Even before its release, stories and rumours regarding the making of Cameron's obscenely expensive Titanic had become the stuff of
Hollywood legend - budget blow-outs, on-set tantrums and
unimaginable attention to detail. All for a story we've heard before - the sinking of a ship.Still, for a fleeting moment (three hours and fourteen minutes, to be exact) Cameron manages to resurrect this nautical monument of human engineering to give us a more intimate story.
The tale of Rose (Winslet) and Jack (DiCaprio) is a classic tragedy of forbidden love, told in flash-back and framed by a present-day 'treasure hunt' for the Titanic's watery remains. Whilst the framing device is clunky, the romantic tale works, mostly because of the genuine chemistry that seems to exist between the two leads. But the rest of the cast are mere cardboard cut-outs, Cameron depicting them via the familiar stereotypes - the self-interested and heartless upper classes versus the 'underlings,' who are lovable larrikins and pure in spirit.
This is not about characters, it is about symbols of humanity. It is also about very lavish special effects. In the end, stripped of all the hype, effects and money, Titanic is just another love story, though a good one.
The obvious irony is that spending so much money (over $250 million) on it merely serves to reinforce the sheer arrogance and self-indulgence of the many whom Cameron accuses in this film.The only difference is that, this Titanic has managed to keep its head above water. ---Paul Garcia