Friday, April 6, 2012

Even in 3D ‘Titanic’ still sinks

I’m not a fan of taking “classic” movies and updating them.

Sure, digitally remastering older movies like ‘Harold and Maude’ and ‘The Godfather’ so they’re available on new technology formats is a welcome move – but this current fad of taking old movies and making them 3D just to add to their haul is ridiculous.

The two most recent examples are ‘Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace’ and ‘Titanic.’
As a huge ‘Star Wars’ fan, I did go see that film when it came out last month. And, since it is laden with special effects, there were some nice scene tweaks.

It was still the same movie, though. It still had the same wooden kid and the worst character ever created (Jar Jar Binks – for those that haven’t seen the film). Just because you update to 3D, that doesn’t mean those things have disappeared.

There’s no difference with ‘Titanic.’
 When the movie first came out in 1997, I didn’t get the hoopla surrounding it then – so I most certainly don’t get it now.

Sure, Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet are tremendous talents – but it’s still a bad movie.

Even I will admit the cinematography was great, but the central love story was so contrived and overblown that it sucked the air out of the theater. Only a teenage girl would find that romance engaging – much like ‘Twilight.’ Yeah, I said it.

When you add the bad romance to bad acting turns by Billy Zane (really, didn’t he peak with ‘Memphis Belle’?) and the majority of the faux partying Irish in the belly of the ship the whole movie stinks of cliché after cliché.
The final hour of the film is the ship going down – and some of those special effects were pretty spectacular at the time – but they certainly don’t warrant the 3D treatment. It’s like James Cameron is just trying to add to his own mystique – no matter if it is warranted or not.

It is also the final hour of the film that draws my ardent disdain.

Don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t thrilled with the first two hours of the film – Victor Garber’s always welcome presence not withstanding – but the final hour is just a travesty.

Forget for a moment that through her own stupidity Rose causes Jack’s death. Actually, you know what, don’t forget that. If she had moved over on that stupid piece of floating wood and let him up with her he wouldn’t have frozen to death. And what’s his deal? He can’t leave her for two seconds to find his own piece of wood to save his life? It’s better to just sit there like a lump and freeze to death?  If that isn’t a stupid death, I don’t know what is.

Heck, if Rose had stayed on the lifeboat then Jack could have had the piece of wood all to himself. Does it sound like I’m ranting? Well, I am. That absolutely ridiculous scene dumbfounds me – and so do the people who find it romantic.

‘Titanic’ should have been a haunting tale. I mean, in this day and age of the 99 percent and all the attention that is getting, ‘Titanic’ is actually politically relevant today. So how did James Cameron screw it up so badly?
At the end of the day, this rerelease was timed for the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic. There are bound to be fans out there that get sucked in for this – the same way I did for ‘Star Wars.’ On its Wednesday opening, the movie pulled in $4.7 million in ticket sales, in fact.

Fans should remember, though, that just because it’s in 3D – that doesn’t mean that the storyline still doesn’t sink.

What do you think? Are you going to see ‘Titanic’ in 3D?


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