Well, Canadian film director James Cameron really hit a gusher with this Titanic thing. The film has drawn more viewers than any other in history. It’s spawned a cult of Kleenex-carrying,
Leonardo-crazed movie-goers who dish out their $8 over and over again to watch the ship sink with its good looking passengers. And, in case you missed it, Cameron’s ship epic grabbed the most
Hollywood hardware in recent memory at the recent Oscar Awards.
But while the film clearly has armies of fierce defenders around the globe, it has also attracted some acidic critics. You never hear from them, of course, because Titanic criticism has become
near-blasphemy. Still there are some who see the film as over-budgeted schmaltz woven around apredictable plot and weak acting. And they’re taking their cultural protest to the Internet.
A full fledged anti-Titanic movement is taking shape. Groups are forming over computer lines in a cyber-rally to support the cause. There’s the Anti-Titanic Society (http://www.oocities.com/SunsetStrip/Venue/9764/) with its Top 11 Things That Could Actually Have Happened To The Titanic and its bitingly critical opinion forum. Watch for the A.L.C.S. (Anti-Leonardo Decrapio Society) Web site coming soon.
Then there’s the rather official-sounding People Against the Titanic Hype (P.A.T.H). United in the belief that Titanic is the most overrated film of the year, P.A.T.H. has a controversy-generating Web site (http://members.tripod.com/~anti_titanic/) where the film is shunned as a boring three- hour-long movie about nothing. But those are fighting words in a pro-Titanic world. And they’ve raised the ire of die-hard fans of the movie who are rushing to defend the film’s reputation against the boorish and taste-challenged. Read the knock-down, drag-em-out debate on the site’s discussion board.
Movie critic David Walsh wrote one of the more scathing Titanic reviews (http://www.wsws.org/arts/1998/jan1998/titanic.htm), calling it an “enormously labored and mediocre effort.” And that’s no surprise coming from Cameron, he says, since “There was nothing in Aliens, True Lies, The Abyss or the Terminator movies to suggest that here was an immense artistic talent waiting to blossom.”
To put the mega-budget film into context, the author of “The Titanic Sank, Let’s Move On” site (http://www.pond.com/~uhjeff/titanic.html) makes this compelling observation: “The makers of Titanic wasted over 5 BILLION gallons of water! And for what? So a bunch of girls could sit and ogle Leonardo DiCaprio?”