Why did Cameron show the bow hit the ocean floor but not the stern?

Dan Kappes

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Sep 26, 2018
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In the movie, when Bodine shows Old Rose the computer sinking simulation, Cameron only decided to show the bow section hitting the ocean floor, but not the stern. The published book of the screenplay said the stern part was deleted in post-production.

Did Cameron only decide to show the bow because it is more intact than the stern and it "planed away" gracefully to the bottom, while the stern imploded and corkscrewed to the bottom in a devastating manner?

I bet some people who saw that in the theater were wondering "What happened to the stern?"

The whole simulation with both the bow and stern hitting the ocean floor are included on the 2005 3 disc DVD set, and disc two of the 2012 Blu-Ray.

Interestingly, in the extended cut of Cameron's 2003 documentary film Ghosts of the Abyss, the simulation is shown again, but this time the stern is shown hitting the ocean floor and not the bow.

This is the simulation on YouTube.

 

Kyle Naber

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It's probably too much to explain to a general audience how the stern was so destroyed, so most of them had falsely assumed the stern met the same fate as the bow.
 
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Harland Duzen

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Since the wreck scenes (shot in real life and with a scale model) were all of the Bow section (also where the iconic "I'm flying" bit took place,) it would have been confusing to see the stern wreckage.

Also, as the Poop Deck is nearly unrecognisable lacking the capstans, benches and other things from being bent backwards it would have been difficult for the audience to perhaps understand what they were seeing until it was too late and take away from the sadness expressed in the scene prior.

Finally in terms of symbolism and emotional impact, it probably made more sense to Cameron and the editors to end with the subs leaving the bow plunging it into darkness since that was where Rose was probably happiest and it (could) be construed the Bow fading into darkness is akin to her memory of the event fading*.

*Sorry if the last sentence sounds a bit pretentious. o_O
 

Kyle Naber

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A bit unrelated, but i would’ve liked to hear some booms from the stern when it fades away behind Jack and Rose in the water.
 

Dan Kappes

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Sep 26, 2018
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Since the wreck scenes (shot in real life and with a scale model) were all of the Bow section (also where the iconic "I'm flying" bit took place,) it would have been confusing to see the stern wreckage.

Also, as the Poop Deck is nearly unrecognisable lacking the capstans, benches and other things from being bent backwards it would have been difficult for the audience to perhaps understand what they were seeing until it was too late and take away from the sadness expressed in the scene prior.

Finally in terms of symbolism and emotional impact, it probably made more sense to Cameron and the editors to end with the subs leaving the bow plunging it into darkness since that was where Rose was probably happiest and it (could) be construed the Bow fading into darkness is akin to her memory of the event fading*.

*Sorry if the last sentence sounds a bit pretentious. o_O
Also, the final scene (which either takes place in heaven or in a dream sequence) shows the bow section.