Thursday, December 01, 2005

"You're here, there's nothing to fear"

First (December 1st) was World AIDs Day. Just a reminder that this pandemic is just that...still a pandemic. Too many people have died and too many are still suffering needlessly. (I remember John, Kelvin, Aaron, Joseph, Jose, Michael, Frank...)

The other news of the day: I just learned that Octavia Butler has a new book out about vampires. This begs the question: Where the hell have I been? I got an e-mail spam...that's how I learned about this! Well, we know what I'm doing tomorrow morning (although, I might save it to read when I'm in Minnesota for Christmas).

So the time of the week is's our weekly feature of movies we like the least. This week I'd slated Mark from Fear and Loathing in England, but those of you in the know are aware that this week he's been 1) violently ill, 2) finishing a novel, and 3) closing on his new home. I think it's fair to say that when he bowed out, I wasn't too surprised. Hopefully, he will grace my blog next week?

So it's left to our lovely Charby to save the day. And save the day she is, for if there had been a post-vacuum you all would have been treated to a diatribe on why Medicare Part D is evil and must be destroyed (preferrably before it is implemented). Let's all breathe a collective sigh of relief, and read the thoughts of a woman who is, plainly, just incredible!


I'd like to nominate Titanic as my worst film ever.
I'm not very into the whole chick-flick genre and wondered if I could nominate all of them in it, and then finally decided on Titanic, your typical rich girl-meets poor boy then meets tragedy story.
I went to see this in the cinema with a few friends after it came out, swayed by the hype and did my very best not to giggle all the way through at the terrible predictable lines.
I remain convinced to this day that the only reason it made so much money that it did was for all the teenage girls who went over and over again to cry as Leo (who in my opinion is one of the most painfully wooden actors ever!) dies.
And Kate Winslet sleepwalks her way through such classic lines as "I
want you to draw me like one of your French girls" or the fab bit where she tries to impress all the irish fellas by standing on tippy-toes.
It is said that Titanic is really two love stories, the Jack/Rose Snoozefest and the directors interest in the ship itself. The second story is easily much better, it is hard not to be touched at the mother reading her children a story as the ship sinks, or reassuring them that people will come for them.
But its still terribly overacted, perhaps if he had spent less attention on the CGI-ness of the ship and read the script a few times before shooting, it wouldn't have been so dreadfully cheesy.
What possibly irritates me most, is where Kate's character is on the floating plank of wood and Leo is dangling in the water.
(rant over)


Interesting...I recall recently a few of you reminiscing shedding a tear over this flick. So what think you?


Bee said...

I've never seen it myself, and have never wanted to - for what I think to be three excellent reasons:

(1) I don't like Kate Winslet
(2) I don't like Leonardo di Caprio
(3) I don't like Celine Dion.

Good enough reasons, you think?

One of my housemates in the house I was living in a few years ago borrowed the video, and was watching it - with the volume turned up VERY LOUD - in the room next door to my bedroom. All I could hear was a load of screaming and crashing, with occasional bursts of Celine Dion,* and I can remember thinking: "Jeez, how f***ing long is it taking for this ship to sink? Get on with it!"

*I wish she would burst.

Bee said...

I've just realised what a bad-tempered old cuss I sound in that last comment. I'm sorry. But just thinking about Celine Dion makes me cross. I'll calm down now and go back to thinking about food instead ...

Charby said...

I could have talked about the awfulness of that song forever!

my word Verification says "lSHIPnvh" :)

Hyde said...

Oh Charby! What is there to say?

I LOVE Titanic!

I agree with you in regards to its many flaws (especially the bit about the float at the end!). I also hate the awful screenplay. The entire second half of the movie is filled with nonsense like "Jack!" "Rose! We have to get off the ship, Rose! We have to not freeze!" They just yell each other's names and state the obvious over and over and over.

That said, I still think it's a magical movie. I saw it in the theaters and cried several times. The "love story" with the ship is what it's all about, as you pointed out. And even more-- it's about the ending of a cultural era.

I don't want to occupy all of Spins' comments space with a specific defense of the movie, as for me, it's mostly visceral. So, here's the bottom line--

I agree with you about its flaws, but I love it anyway.

Isn't it possible to intensely love something that's intensely flawed? (Hell, sometimes flaws are part of the charm!)



shadow51 said...

Well, okay, I loved Titanic. I went to see it at the theater several times. I dragged whoever I could find to drag to see it with me, including spinsterwitch (very tolerant of her, eh). I took my parents and my nieces to see it (and how many other movies can three generations sit down and enjoy together). I never saw it as a chick flick or as a rich girl mets poor boy flick. That is because I am a Titaniac.

As a small child I remember my grandfather telling me stories of his youth and one of those stories was about how the news of the Titanic's sinking came to them in newspapers and how it was talked about in church and community gatherings and at home. Growing up I read books, I watched documentaries, I knew the stories. On late night movies I watched Clifton Webb and Barbara Stanwyck play out their family drama on the sinking ship and David McCullum stay at his telegraph post until it was almost too late. I knew the stories of the passengers. Jack Thayer who was 17 and survived by riding the ship down (pretty much like Rose and Jack) and managed to get picked up by a lifeboat. Only to take his own life in the 40s after one of his sons went down in a plane over the North Sea. Perhaps he couldn't bear to think of his son sinking in those frigid waters. I always thought that one particular sad. I was thrilled when Robert Ballard discovered where the ship lay in 1986.

So for me this movie was definitely not a chick flick or boy/girl movie. A romance - oh, yes. Because I loved this ship and it's story. Who knows why, early exposure perhaps, the curiosity of a child that grew.

I thought that Cameron did a great job with all the details. I still watch the movie every so often and still see something I had missed previously. And there is one part of the movie (having nothing to do with Jack/Rose) that still chokes me up.

Please excuse the excessive wordage. But, you know, Titaniac.

MrMystic said...

Spinny first of all the Movie Titanic, was just Romeo and Juliet on a ship. Thats why it was so predictable.

Secondly not only did I notice there was room on the raft but probably on a few others also.

Not that it matters because in reality neither of them would have survived.

All that aside I liked the way the two actors workrd on screen they suited each other perfectly.

Hippy Chick said...

I loved Titanic I have to say but every now and again I need a good chick flick. And that's when I usually call Spin to join me - hee hee, sorry to out you Spin! :)

red one said...

Never saw it, never wanted to. If I ever see a film with Leonardo di Caprio in, it will mean either he or I have changed our taste in films quite dramatically!


spinsterwitch said...

I enjoyed this movie...although I also find it frustrating to watch for all the reasons that Charby states. The vehicle story (Rose & Jack) which gets us to the real story (the Titanic) was pretty awful. But I still did like it.

HC - I don't think they'd be surprised that I can enjoy chick-flick' long as they don't pretend to be something else (as Legends of the Fall did).

the urban fox said...

I am the only person I know who thinks DiCaprio is a decent actor. Titanic was spectacular mush though. I thought exactly the same about the raft scene, so it made me laugh out loud when I read Charby's rant.

Mark said...

DiCaprio can be a great actor when he wants - and he hasn't wanted to be for about a decade. I like Titanic, but I can see it's flaws. The commentary on the DVD when they talk about Celine Dion is funny. Dreadful song.

Ka said...

I was a Titantic hold out, finally seeing on television YEARS after the worn tape (remember the warning signs saying that the picture quality was deteriorating due to overuse?) had vanished from theatres. The movie made me furiously interested in the ship itself and pathologically anti-Kate Winslet (I've always been ant-Leo), which lasted until I saw Heavenly Creatures last month. There's not a bit about the love story that interested me - what WAS that tiptoe thing anyway? is going on pointe really that impressive? - but the boat scenes and the incidental stories (Kathy Bates, you rule my world) were very interesting.

I'm surprised to hear you think Leo is a good actor, Fox. Really? Like really really? Wow. You might well be the only person indeed...