Of course I didn’t want to give James Cameron anymore money.
Of course it’s a smart marketing tool to take advantage of the upcoming 100th anniversary.
Of course it’s ridiculously long without an intermission, something that even “Gone With the Wind” gave us.
But after watching Titanic (in 3D) for the first time in its entirety since it came out in 1997-98 (hey, I still have the two-VHS set, not the DVD!), I was pleased to find it to be the same story I fell in love with as a third-grader.
Back then, I was one of those girls madly in love with my first crush, Leonardo Dicaprio. I constantly sang along to Celine Dion’s “My Heart Will Go On.” It was more than likely my first PG-13 movie at the theaters.
Though the film goes down as arguably one of the best love stories in Hollywood history, this time around it was much more than just that.
As Rose (Kate Winslet) discovers earlier on in the film that there aren’t enough lifeboats but the ship is deemed unsinkable and destined for infamy, it made me think back to a story that occurred earlier this year.
In January, we had the Costa Concordia partially sink off the coast of Italy, killing 30 people and injuring 64. Two still remain missing.
That’s what got me this time around moreso than Rose telling Jack (Dicaprio) that she’ll never let go.
How, nearly a century later, could a similar mistake happen?
Those moments — from a mother telling a story to her two children as they’re about to drown to the old couple that prepares for the end while laying in bed (take that, “The Notebook”!) — resonate more than the doomed lovers.
Suddenly, you wonder if some of those same things happened a mere three months ago, in an age when we have iPhones. When safety on cruise ships shouldn’t be called into question.
And unlike the captain of the Concordia, the captain of the Titanic, Edward Smith, stayed on it, perishing into the sea with his honor intact.
That human element we all can relate to is what makes “Titanic” work.
Sure, it doesn’t hurt that James Horner’s score is grand, as is the scale of the undertaking of such a film. It is still tied for the most nominations (14) and wins (11) for a film in Academy Award history. It incorporated the present day/flashback story before “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” did so to earn a Best Picture nod a few years ago.
Titanic will remain a part of my childhood, just like Harry Potter. As the second-highest grossing film of all time (Cameron’s “Avatar” overtook it in 2009), it will also remain with the billions who have seen it worldwide.