Why do people dislike the 1997 Titanic movie?

Dec 2, 2000
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Easley South Carolina
>>Was there any report of red water amidst the bodies and debris<<

Nope. Not in any extant material that I've seen, and not a peep in the newspapers either. Not even a fabrication, and the newsies then didn't mind creating stories pulled out of the nastier parts of their anatomy either. (Nor do they mind pulling out stories from the same source today, but that's another rant!)

>>and they appear to have plain stoneware cups (naval issue?) <<

Very likely they were. Warships are a lousy place to use fine china, but you see the plain robust, to say nothing of cheap and expendable, stoneware on messdecks everywhere.
 

Steve Dunham

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May 28, 2015
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I agree with a lot of the criticism of the movie, especially 1990s characters (Jack and Rose) in a 1912 environment. One thing I didn't see mentioned is the scene of an afterlife on the Titanic, in which all the disaster's victims seem to be some kind of saint by virtue of having died. Two disaster books I read (not about Titanic) touched on this. In Out of the Channel: The Exxon Valdez Oil Spill in Prince William Sound, John Keeble quoted Susan Sontag: "Death is regarded not as natural and inevitable but as a cruel, unmerited disaster." In The White Cascade: The Great Northern Railway and America’s Deadliest Avalanche, Gary Krist referred to the "indiscriminate praise that victims of major disasters often receive." The passengers on the Titanic were handed an unmerited disaster, yes, but that doesn't make them better people than those who died in other ways. That scene in Cameron's movie reminds me of what Krist wrote. (I know I'm adding to a dormant thread, but I only discovered ET this year and am still exploring it.)
 

Jason D. Tiller

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Dec 3, 2000
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Stanley, Ing,

FWIW, I can recall from memory that Lightoller was not shown drinking tea on the bridge, in the movie. Other than Captain Smith, Moody was the only other officer to be shown with a cup and saucer in his hand.
 

Will C. White

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Apr 18, 2007
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Michael-Great Whites are known to be in colder water, since we still have a good number of them north of us off the Golden Gate (San Francisco), but I'd believe that the water that night was even too cold for them. WILL
 

Inger Sheil

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Dec 3, 2000
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I agree that the image is incongruous, Stanley - Moody's depiction on the bridge during the collision is one of my least favourite character moments. He was a strapping near six-foot Yorkshire lad, but they cast a fairly petite American actor because he could "do" a British accent (a sort of BBC English). Speaking to men in the merchant service and reading contemporary sources, on cold nights they usually liked a mug of coffee, cocoa or Bovril...I don't think fine bone china teacups were of very practical use! Another British stereotype hits the screen.

Great White Sharks are typically a tropical & temperate water dweller, inhabiting a temperature range of between 12 and 24° C (54° to 75° F) in coastal and off-shore waters. There is almost a tradition of yearly summer reports of them appearing of the coast of Cornwall - it's a great UK tabloid perenial, now that seas are warming. None of the reports had yet been confirmed while I was living there, but I wouldn't be surprised if one did find its way up that far North. I wouldn't expect to find them in any large numbers too far off shore - they tend to be adapted to feed on pinnipeds, although they'll also opportunistically go in for windfalls like whale caracases. They do, however, have large ranges, so I suppose it's possible.

Greenland Sharks are probably the most well known of the few species that live in Polar waters year around. Another Sleeper shark that lives in Polar waters is the Pacific sleeper - it range is identified as the Chukchi Sea, East Siberian and Beaufort seas, to the Bering Sea and in the Pacific Ocean to Baja California and off Japan including the Okhotsk Sea.

Pelagic Alantic sharks might have consumed parts of the bodies - Blue sharks, for example (another shark that does venture into both polar and tropical waters). I only recall one report of damage done to bodies by "sea life" (unspecified).
 
Dec 2, 2000
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Easley South Carolina
Bovril?

(Looks at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bovril ) Ahhhh...I get it. Yeah, I wouldn't mind having a cuppa that stuff. I'll still pass on the Vegimite mentioned in that article.

>> don't think fine bone china teacups were of very practical use!<<

I'd make a concession for the 1st Cabin dining saloon, but not for a working environment on a ship.

BTW, thanks for the information on the Great Whites.
 
Jan 2, 2008
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Personally I don't dislike the movie at all. Taken for what it is, a mainstream Hollywood blockbuster, its quite good. And despite it's inaccuracies I'd give credit for things it did get right. I also think the whole Jack and Rose story served its purpose quite well for those who like that kind of thing. If Cameron had concentrated on the real stories of real passengers he wouldn't have had the freedom to do what he wanted with their plotlines. So I think it works reasonably well. Although not 100% accurate the recreated exterior and interior of Titanic was still breathtaking. I praise the fact the correct painting was depicted in the smoking room, not even ANTR got that right.
 
Feb 24, 2004
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>>I praise the fact the correct painting was depicted in the smoking room, not even ANTR got that right.

ANTR-the-film didn't get it right because Walter Lord-the-author didn't get it right. Re: the Cameron film, you can probably credit Don Lynch and Ken Marschall for seeing to it that the correct painting was put on display. Cheers, guys!

To me, the two best things to come out of the 1997 film were 1) the new generation of serious young researchers who were inspired by it; and 2) the insufferable smirks it wiped off the faces of various and sundry media pundits.

Roy
 

Martin Cooper

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Dec 13, 2007
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Historical events mixed together with fiction, ie; 'film makers or poetic licenece', just to get bums on seats and make a load of dosh, should never be allowed. Those that are well read and in the know can sort out the fiction from fact, but for others that are not in the know or are prone to believe that what they see on the silver screen is 'real', then this is fixed in their heads as being the truth. They tend to believe all this 'licence' and even quote these fictional events as being 'fact', which in time can lead to the historical fact being replaced by film makers fiction. Take for instance the 1964 film 'Zulu', the film was based on an actual event that took place during the Anglo-Zulu War of 1879. After the earlier same day battle at iSandlwana, in which a zulu impi of over 20,000 massacred and butchered a force of over 1000 men, the zulu reserve of around 3-4000 (who had not been involved at iSandlwana), went on to attack the mission station at Rorke's Drift, which was being used as a depot and hospital by the British. The film depicted these men of the British Army as being a Welsh regiment, however, the actual regiment that fought at Rorke's Drift was called the 24th (2nd Warwickshire) regiment of foot, and of the 123 men of the 24th (2nd Warwickshire) regiment, there were just 14 that were Welsh, the majority of the rest being English. The main reason why this happened is because Stanley Baker was Welsh, and he had a chip on his shoulder, so he fictionalised the regiment as being Welsh and included many fictional characters with Welsh sounding names, had them pretending to have a Welsh choir so that they could start singing 'men of harlech' just to add to all the false Welshness. Since this film was made in 1964 the number of people who believe this Welsh myth that it was a Welsh regiment is unbelieveable, the facts have been replaced by fiction and the myth has replaced the truth. Those who have studied the AZW of 1879 know that the film is mainly fiction, however, those who just watch it for the action think that it is the truth, and continue to quote the regiment as being a Welsh regiment rather that the actual regiment which was the 24th (2nd Warwickshire) regiment. Welshman Baker got away with it back in 1964, and since then the myth is replacing the truth, the ironical thing about it is that although Baker was Welsh, he played the part of Lt Chard, who was an Englishman. As you can see, I feel very strongly about fiction replacing fact, and feel that historical events like this should be portrayed as near to historical fact as possible. So my gripe against the film 'Titanic' is that it is almost all fiction, and when I mention to anyone that I am interested in Titanic, they automatically assume I mean the film, and when I mention the AZW and iSandlwana and RD, they nearly always say " Oh, yes the 'Welsh' regiment", this cannot be right when fiction takes over from fact. Jack and Rose, the 'Welsh' regiment, all fiction yes, but it starts taking over from fact, and eventually replaces the actual events with fictional rubbish. I have no time for film makers that do this sort of thing to historical events, just to get bums on seats and make a pile of dosh, keep to the facts and leave out the fiction.
 
Jan 2, 2008
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It is fair to say that since the movie was released, interest in Titanic has soared. When the movie came out my great aunt was still alive (she was 95 at the time), she had crossed on the Olympic twice before April 1912 and watched Titanic sail from Southampton. She got quite emotional watching the film.
 
Jan 23, 2019
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Just to throw my thoughts out, Cameron went pretty far out of his way to make it authentic and historically accurate as possible (putting aside the errors for now) only to throw a totally fictional story on top of it. He had tens, hundreds of millions of dollars at his disposal and the result is Jack and Rose. My girlfriend and I had a bet on who said the other's name more times in the 1912 scenes alone. I won because I picked Rose saying "Jack." It was well over 100 times between the two, but I can't recall the exact figures.

I think it's also a bit weird how invested Andrews is in Rose's opinions and well-being. The constant interaction of fictional characters with historical figures can come off as morbid episode of The Magic School Bus or Mentors. It's not helped by the cartoonishly evil Cal and his henchman.

To defend him, he had to make it as massively popular as possible to justify the cost to his superiors and it takes a lot of skill and talent to accomplish what he did. It's hard to write a stupid script well. He's not just faking it either, his love for Titanic is genuine. You can tell by the years he spent exploring her after the movie came out and the 100-year anniversary he did. For better or worse, he is a Titanorak.
 
S

SmileyGirl

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Ironically as a huge fan for films from the 30's-60's, i never had like ANTR at all (love the book though). I always find it filled with enough historical blunders that i often put it in my mind with the 53 film. Not saying there is nothing historically great about the film, there are lots of great moments with it, but its quite clear it was made for Kenneth More, and since i have never been a huge fan of Lightoller i think that is the main reason iv never liked it.

As for the way JC showed Murdoch, i myself have always really enjoyed it.

As the Sea Of Glass extensively talks about, there is no doubt that a suicide or shooting of of some sort did occur in the final moments and it happened on the starboard side near the bridge.

Since we know there is only one confirmed person who had access with a firearm in the location at that time interval, one can start to connect the dots. Now no one can 100% prove it, but much like other aspects of the sinking if you are going to show the Titanic sinking, these are the kind of things if you want to be accurate that you have to show in some form or other
Why don’t you like Lightoller? I know he told lies etc, is it because of that?
 
Feb 24, 2004
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Tonya, I believe we also need to think of and respect Jim Cameron's tremendous contribution to the Titanic research community since the 1997 film. If he had just released his film and called it quits, that would be one thing, but think of all the important new discoveries and insights that now have his name attached to them.

Roy
 
Dec 23, 2017
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I think that for the big screen, we are never going to get a film as accurate as the 97 film, regardless of our thoughts of the love story.
Jim is one of the few people in Hollywood who actually care enough about the subject to go out of his way to make sure its accurate cough Pearl Harbor cough. One thing i loved was that they recreated the sheer of the ship, Ken M. said he never grew tired of seeing that detail!

My personal thoughts on the movie are that i most likely seen it about 300 million times:p As the years have gone by, the love story is something i find i care less and less about, but if its connected to near full 100% recreation of the ship and her interiors i can take it:D

I also LOVE James Horner's score, i *gulp* even like that one particulate songo_O

Overall i can see why people dont enjoy it, but i think we can say that for the most part, its a really well done script and the actors play their parts really well.

Always thought this video goes into the film well
 
Jan 2, 2008
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Exactly. He's as intrigued and in love with the Titanic as we all are. And so what if the movie wasn't all that accurate, the stunning sets and effects had me falling in love with the ship all over again!
 
Feb 24, 2004
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I forgave any inaccuracies and excesses in the film the very first time I watched GOTA. I knew then the guy was on the right path. I also marvel at how much deep sea photography and video have improved over the last several years, due greatly to the "push" they've received from Jim and his brother. It seems cold-hearted or even snide not to be grateful.

Roy
 
Nov 14, 2005
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I do remember saying to myself the first time I saw the movie was "wow, she's a pretty girl. Its nice to see young pretty actress that isn't another anorexic herion addicted model type for once". I hadn't then and still dont really keep up on modern movies so it was the first time I saw her in anything.
 
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Dec 29, 2006
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Witney
The question posed in this thread is why do people dislike the film, not "what do they like about it". To that extent, many of the comments are likely to be somewhat negative. However, supporters of Cameron's Titanic can perhaps take some comfort from the fact that most critics seem to have focussed on the (many) irritating features about this film - which is not the same as saying that they actually dislike it.
 
Jun 12, 2004
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quote:

most critics seem to have focussed on the (many) irritating features about this film - which is not the same as saying that they actually dislike it
Stanley, the title of the thread is "WHY do people dislike the 1997 Titanic movie?" By pointing out the many irritating features about the film, posters/critics are being consistent with the purpose of the thread.

By the way, pointing out certain unfavorable features need not be the same as disliking the film altogether. The two are not intended to be the same thing.

This film has, in my opinion, questionable aspects throughout, but that doesn't mean I dislike the film because of that. I just keep in mind that it is, in fact, only a film, not reality.

Or did I misunderstand your point?​