Some interesting points about Camerons film from a well known Titanic author


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Jon_dalbyball

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While he does praise certain aspects of the film he also made some interesing points. Its by David Hutchings.

>>By far the most disturbing part of the film lay in the many historical inaccuracies and in lights on the character of those who played major parts in the saving of many lives that night. For here we see to that 'Hollywood Epic Syndrome" that casts British actors - or even actors playing parts of British citizens - as arrogant, posturing and, one might say, 'weak-kneed' individuals. Any heroism that had emanated from the British officers of Titanic on that fateful night has been deliberately annihilated. Captain Smith is represented as practically ineffectual as he is portrayed meekly accepting instructions on the ships speed from an overbearing White Star chairman, Bruce Ismay. Second Officer Lightoller, who did so much in getting lifeboats safely away before demonstrating his own heroism on an upturned lifeboat, is shown as an arrogant, posturing individual rather like those Victorian military-sterotypes so often parodied on old style music hall stages. First Officer Murdoch, depicted as a nervous type, is scandalousy shown as accepting a bribe, and then shooting a Steerage Class passengers ( who just so happened to be Irish ) before committing suicide. The orginal script was had this gallant officers body floating in the water with dollar bills floating out of his pocket. Outraged representations had Cameron promising to cut this scene which he the rewrote in its current form, apparently, to the grief of Mr. Murdoch's desendants who are understandbly threatening to sue. Watching these caricatures of British officers and crew on the screen one wonders how the 'Ship of Dreams'managed to have sailed, let alone have been built, by such men of inferior courage!

Hollywood's researchers seem to have suffered mass amnesia throughout the film as the whole of Ireland was under British rule in those days.

The film inherent anti-Britishness also extends into the credits. All American involvement has to be acknowledged - including the tea-boy! - but of the British organisations involvement ne'er a word. Of course Southampton Museums - nothing: Cobwebs. Ocean Liner Memorabilia who provided originals for copying dinning room chairs, china, etc - nothing. The British Titanic society - nothing. Of private people who allowed original panelling to be copied - nothing! The Ulster Folk and Transport Museum had a mention but perhaps here Cameron forgot that Ulster is still a British Province.<<

Just goes to show what a very small minded twit Cameron really is! I mean what a stupid petty man
 
Dec 2, 2000
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>>Just goes to show what a very small minded twit Cameron really is! I mean what a stupid petty man.<<

Noooooooo...it show's that he's a film maker who produces movies for a mass market. Unfortunately, Hollywood is not called "Tinsletown" for nothing. It's a realm of fantasy and unreality made to look real.

I'm not going to defend the film itself. Love it or hate it if you will, but don't confuse the production for the mindset of the man who had to make any number of compromises in order to satisfy investors to get it made. Whatever James Cameron may be, he is anything but stupid and small minded. Far from it. The fact that he managed to get people and financing together for two bona fide expeditions to the Titanic says otherwise.

That he did it with what were...at the time...two cutting edge remote operated vehicals...has done more to add to our knowladge and understanding of the wreck then anybody had been able to accomplish prior to that time.

I'm not saying the man is perfect, but he's accomplished quite a bit that actually matters. Calling him stupid because of a work of fantasy whilst ignoring all of that, that's stupid and petty!
 
J

Jon_dalbyball

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Sorry don't agree with you at all. He's a very petty small minded little american twit in my personal opinion. We can talk about this until we are blue in the face but there would be no point, we will just have to agree to disagree.

How you can't see leaving all the british people like BTS or Cobwebs that were kind enough to work on the film out of the credits is not petty to me is quite bizarre. How is this just being just the result of being a Hollywood 'film maker' for the mass market ? If anything it is completely unnecessary and bad mannered to deliberately cut people out of the credits film purely because they are british. How is that not petty ? And how would that please the people financing the film or make it more of a hit ? After all you imply he was doing this to make a 'blockbuster' and appeal to the 'masses' and that is all he is guilty of or rather trying to do - but the fact of the matter is giving credit where credit is due to people that helped out in the movie during the end credits would not have detracted from this. Not at all.

But like I said we will just have to agree to disagree. You think it's not a petty by not including the British people who helped in the movie - just because they are British - I don't.

Cheers

Jon
 

Paul Lee

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Aug 11, 2003
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What on earth makes you think that James Cameron was in any way involved in typing up the list of people involved for the credits? Thats not his job, so why should he be blamed?
 
Dec 2, 2000
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>>Sorry don't agree with you at all.<<

You don't have to.

>> He's a very petty small minded little american twit in my personal opinion.<<

Which is only your opinion, but that doesn't make it right. Some share it, some don't.

I don't.

If you want to know why, take some time to search out the discussions we've had over the years on the expeditions he's organized and led and what they accomplished. If all you do is judge the man by his movie, then you are not looking at the whole picture.
 
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Jon_dalbyball

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>>What on earth makes you think that James Cameron was in any way involved in typing up the list of people involved for the credits? That's not his job, so why should he be blamed?<<

Maybe it wasn't him. You may well be correct. I could just as easily say to you "how an earth do you know that's it was 'not' his job"? You don't know - at least not for sure. He might have been involved with all aspects of the film including the credits - he seemed very hands on! So yes I don't know he was responsible for the credits but then again you don't know if he was not. It works both ways.

Cheers

Jon
 
You know, everyone, the term "historical inaccuracy" shouldn't be applied to the fact that the focus is on fictional characters. The film Titanic was always supposed to be a love story between fictional characters...not a docudrama.

Every single Titanic film...every last one of them...contains fictional characters and inaccuracies. There is not one, even ANTR, that 100% follows the disaster.

If you want a document of the disaster, pick up Lord's book or the Marshall/Lynch book. Otherwise, you're going to be disappointed.

As far as the so-called "interesting comments". Apologies for being brutally honest, but these are far from interesting. It's just the same old carping and stomping one's feet in writing that makes up the majority of threads on Titanic message boards about what a horrible film Cameron's is. And 12 years later, I think it's time to move on.

Every film is going to have its detractors. Not everyone likes everything. But it would be really nice to be able to discuss this film without the discussion degrading into a complain session.

As someone whose main interest in the Titanic is the films on the disaster, it's very frustrating to have to avoid the majority of the threads in this folder.
 
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Jon_dalbyball

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>>expeditions he's organized and led and what they accomplished.<<

Yup we would not have had the footage of the wreck if it were not for him. And its the best footage so far.

>>That he did it with what were...at the time...two cutting edge remote operated vehicles...<<

You say 'what he did' and 'two cutting edge remote operated vehicals' - but take into account he did not design or build these vehicles. You say 'what he did' as if it were just him and don't give the technical people any mention - the real genius behind them. It's funny how one man can take credit for so much.

>>has done more to add to our knowledge and understanding of the wreck then anybody had been able to accomplish prior to that time.<<

As I am sure you know there is a huge team of people on expeditions. In my opinion it is these people that gave us a greater understanding of the wreck more than anybody else. The true professionals. It's all very well to say you want this and that and then bring in all the best people to do the hard bit for you. But yes it can't have been easy making it happen - so I will give him that.
 
J

Jon_dalbyball

Guest
>>how do you know I don't know it was his job?<<

And how do you know I don't know what his job is also??? Again it works both ways. How do you know he was not involved with any aspect of movie the credits ? After all you blatantly implied 'it was not his job' But I doubt you know for sure to make that assumption! At least I said you may be correct. But you don't know for sure do you ? Hence you may also be wrong. Anyway this is silly now so I'm off to watch tv.

Cheers

Jon
 
J

Jon_dalbyball

Guest
>>As far as the so-called "interesting comments". Apologies for being brutally honest, but these are far from interesting. It's just the same old carping and stomping one's feet in writing that makes up the majority of threads on Titanic message boards about what a horrible film Cameron's is. And 12 years later, I think it's time to move on.<<

Sorry only just saw your comments. Agree with it or not the person who wrote it is a well known Titanic author that brings up some very real facts. Sorry I will say facts - as what he points out is blatantly obvious. The anti britishness is not just a matter of opinion - it's there - in the film and is and is very real. It's not another mindless hate article for the film. Far from it. It's a very truthful, well thought out and well written review making valid points. I don't think the reviewer 'stomps' his feet with the same old 'rubbish'! Don't forget he also praises a lot of other aspects of the film - I would have copied it all down but it was a bit long. Why do you think so many people have problems with Camerons film ? I suppose they are just 'imagining' things!

As they say there is no smoke without fire and this film (as much as I love it in many respects) certainly has created a lot of fire - and for good and quite valid reasons! It's certainly not stomping ones feet - I think the reviewer/author is a bit above that!
 
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Jon_dalbyball

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I'm sorry you get that impression Lee! So I have to love the fact that the British in Camerons film are portrayed in a bad way. In fact yes - actually I will agree with you, I do have sour grapes - very much so over this matter.

At least you gave a bit more thought to your last reply. The one before that was a bit odd.

Anyway I'm off to bed.

Cheers

Jon
 
J

Jon_dalbyball

Guest
>>Like it or not, he was the prime mover.<<

And before I go to bed if you read back to what I had written I clearly gave credit to Cameron for making the expeditions happen. In other words I stated that I thought he was the main 'mover' and that this could not have been easy.
 
>>> He's a very petty small minded little american twit in my personal opinion. <<
>
> For the record, Cameron is Canadian, not American.

And he's writing for a studio that's writing the checks and is approving the script. He's also writing to appease an audience that is first and foremost American. He's writing what people are going to expect.

I'm not canonizing him. Not in the least. But I think we need to be realistic about how films are made and be realistic about how many people are involved.

Actually, it's kind of small-minded to dismiss anyone like that.
 
Dec 2, 2000
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>>Yup we would not have had the footage of the wreck if it were not for him. And its the best footage so far. <<

Which is not what I said, Jon. Please refrain from contriving a strawman arguement and deal with what is actually said.

That aside, there is in fact footage, most all of it from the interior of the ship which we would not have were it not for the expeditions which James Cameron organized and led. That includes what's left of the Strauses stateroom and the Turkish Baths. Ghosts Of the Abyss would be a good one for you to watch if you want to get a sense of what they found as would Discovery's "Last Mysteries of The Titanic."

>>You say 'what he did' and 'two cutting edge remote operated vehicals' - but take into account he did not design or build these vehicles. You say 'what he did' as if it were just him and don't give the technical people any mention - the real genius behind them. It's funny how one man can take credit for so much.<<

Leaders and organizers who get things together have a funny tendency to get the credit. Dr. Ballard for example was the co-leader of the expedition which found the ship and opened the door for everything that followed. You don't see a lot of his people getting the press but I doubt you'll find anybody in this forum who isn't aware of the fact that they were there.

Same with James Cameron. He got the people together...some very bright, knowladgable, talanted and well informed people...and some of them are members of this forum or have been at one time. Were all mindful of the part they played, but were also mindful of the fact that if he wasn't doing the moving and the shaking, none of it would have happened, or it would have happened at a much later time if at all.
 
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Jon_dalbyball

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>>>He's also writing to appease an audience that is first and foremost American. He's writing what people are going to expect<<<

Well if making the british crew appear to be whimps appeases the american audience then it does not say much for America people.

Funnily enough both you and Michael have not said if you think it was the decent thing to do to portray brave men, some of which saved many lives and died in the manner of which they were in Camerons film ? You have not given them a single mention. Do you honestly think this was the 'decent' thing to do town Tinsletown or not ? For me it's black and white. Without side stepping the question with a long answer do you really approve of the portrayal of them ?
 
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>>For me it's black and white.<<

For me, it's not.

>>Without side stepping the question with a long answer do you really approve of the portrayal of them ?<<

I don't recall you asking the question in the first place though I do recall you making a declarative statement to the effect by quoting David Hutchings. I don't recall anybody disagreeing with it either. I certainly didn't. Why fuss over a point that's not in dispute?
 
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Jon_dalbyball

Guest
I thought it was quite clear that it was a 'new' question of which I never claimed to have asked before, and I got the answer I expected. Cameron 'suportors' do not/will not admit the obvious - that the british crew were given a raw deal in the movie as it detracts from the argument they make. Hence they tend to side step the matter saying it was never in dispute (when it clearly was)or start talking about 'Hollywood' etc granted they make some very valid points. For me the point was always in dispute as I made my feelings very clear on why I thought Cameron was petty - in other words because of his portrayal of british in his movie. I am sorry if you got the wrong end of the stick but I thought it was obvious. Anyway you side stepped the question declaring it was never a point of dispute rather than giving a straight answer. And how you can not see that the portraying of brave british crew as useless wimps in this film is clearly a great injustice is to be frank quite beyond me -it's very black and white.
 
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Jon_dalbyball

Guest
And I think it quite understandable that someone who comes from England would be just a tiny bit annoyed by the unnecessary portrayal of the British crew in the film. I'm not saying all Brits are (but some obviously are - Hutchings included) and they have good reason to be. Just because that's the 'laws' of 'Tinsletown' or the realms of Hollywood fantasy does not make it 'right' ...

And Michael I can clearly see you won't budge on this. You won't admit the unfair treatment of the British in the movie although it is quite blatant but rather insist on making countless excuses for it. Maybe that is not your intention at all but it certainly comes across that way to me. That said forums are funny places and it's easy to get the wrong end of the stick when you are not having the debate in person. Hence I will leave it at that and call it a day.
 

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