Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Encore’s Birthday Marathon: Day 7

There are some movies that exist almost like historical occurrences. I was seven when Titanic was released and I remember hearing about its infamy long before I actually saw it, so for a long time afterwards I used to think that Rose was some homicidal nut who somehow “killed” Jack. I still wonder if persons really didn’t get the concept behind that final “I’ll never let go”, but I suppose I’m already getting ahead of myself.
I can’t think of any movie released in my time which would qualify as a movie event as much as Titanic. On good days I might bet on The Lord of the Rings, but even though – artistically –I prefer it I can’t credit anyone but Cameron with the grandiosity that’s so essential to this one (and I know my fellow Titanic aficionado Nick would agree with me). I already reviewed Titanic for my top 100 countdown but I suppose it’s proof that you like a movie when you keep finding new things to discuss about it.
This time around I want to focus with specificity on Cameron’s screenplay. With all the madness that went on the nineties I can’t say that it was some sort of Oscar highway robbery, but I have to admit I still get incensed that it didn’t get an Oscar nod which I silly considering the general unimportance of the Oscar and the lineup which was generally strong. Fine, forget sentimental dialogue and hackneyed concepts, maybe I’m overreaching but the only way to make the fantastical sinking of the ship work in context without turning it into some plaintive docudrama IS to set it against the backdrop of something as emotionally manipulative as a similarly fantastical first romance which is marked by its ephemeral nature. Titanic (the real one) is already a historical entity the movie can only work with the audience being allowed to focus on the disaster to occur and the story Cameron carves is a perfect complement. Emotionally interesting, but not arcane and sanguine enough to not distract from that catastrophic second half. Whatever, I’m a fan.
What about you?


Yojimbo_5 said...

I've sent you my reply. I don't want to blow out your candles.

Nicholas Prigge said...

Beautiful. Love the entire last paragraph. I just want to copy it and forward it to anyone who I've ever argued with about this movie. And love the line "it's proof that you like a movie when you keep finding new things to discuss about it." Ain't that the truth?

Also, linkage! Thank you! That's one of my favorite posts!

TomS said...

A spectacular visual experience at the theater; it probably would not read as well on the page, which may account for its screenplay snub. For one of your first moviegoing experiences, it was certainly an impressive introduction to cinema craft. It's telling how our early movies shape our critical eye for years to come. My first movie at a theater? "Mary Poppins".
A nice tribute to this "titanic" movie!

Jose said...

I'm a huuuuge fan too! And to the day I always defend it, at the risk of being uncool, when people attack it.

Andrew: Encore Entertainment said...

yojimbo well, i already sent you my response so i don't need to reply :)

nick that's one of my favourite posts of yours too. it was when i knew i'd found a kindred spirit for the sinking ship.

tom ah, i love mary poppins (my favourite musical of that year).

jose YAY (you know how much your opinion is valued, hee). what i don't get is how almost everyone seems to hate it today and it made all that money only recently. i mean, did the same people go see it in the cinema every day for a year?

Ryan T. said...

I'm a fan. I just remember watching it and loving how epic and romantic it all was. Had a total crush of DiCaprio, but really Winslet captured my heart then and she still has it.

Andrew: Encore Entertainment said...

ryan all the closet fans are coming out.