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“Titanic 3D” – Early Review (SO-SO POSITIVE)

February 15, 2012

The number one movie in the world…errr, scratch that, it’s #2 now (thanks a lot “Avatar”), unless you count inflation, but…wait where was I going with that? OH YES! “Titanic” returns to the big screen! After 15 years, James Cameron’s Oscar winning romantic epic tragedy will grace the silver screens once again, this time in 3D! But, was the 3D worth it?

For those who don’t know (LOL), the story goes as followed; it begins in present day – 1997. An American treasure-seeker Brock Lovett (Bill Paxton) is retrieving artifacts from the submerged ship. Lovett is looking for a famous diamond known as the Heart of the Ocean. But alas, instead of finding the diamond he finds a drawing of a young woman, nude except for a necklace…the diamond he’s been searching for When 100-year-old Rose (Gloria Stuart) reveals she’s the person in the portrait, she is summoned to the wreckage site to tell her story of the 56-carat diamond necklace and her experiences of 84 years earlier.

The film briskly shifts to 1912 Southampton where passengers boarding the Titanic include penniless Jack Dawson (Leonardo DiCaprio) and society girl Rose DeWitt Bukater (Kate Winslet), returning to Philadelphia with her wealthy fiancé Cal Hockley (Billy Zane). After the April 10th launch, Rose develops a passionate affair with Jack, and Cal’s reaction is ruthless. At midpoint in the film, the ship collides to its faithful demise against the iceberg. Water rushes into the front compartments. Even engulfed, Cal continues to pursue Jack and Rose as the massive liner begins its descent.  But, will the young lovers passion for one another overcome Cal & the sinking ship?

Let me just put this out there, I’m thankful that I actually got to see this movie on the big screen. I was only 9-years-old when this movie was released and I remember it being the talk of the town, but my parent refused to take me to see it, saying it was too intense for a small child like myself. Ironically at the screening I attended there were quite a few young children present who looked to be the same age I was back in ’97. I’ve only had the experience of seeing this movie on the small screen for the last 13 some odd years. Seeing this movie in theaters is a complete different experience; the Oscar winning sound effects were like music to my years during the last third of the film. The visual effect, while grand, there are a few portions that look dated. But, to James Cameron’s credit he left EVERYTHING intact, except for the 3D portion…

So, I guess the real question is this: how was it in 3D? Well I can say that this movie works on it’s own even without the 3D, mostly at least. The cliché story arc and the hammy acting isn’t what made this movie such a classic, much like Cameron’s “Avatar” this is a visual treat of a film and to give it a 3D face lift had it’s pros as well as it’s cons. Personally, all the boring talkie scenes served no purpose to the 3D upgrade. The best part of the 3D experience, remains to be seen in the best part of the movie in general: the last hour when the ship is sinking. All the action, all the suspense of the ships slow demise works for the 3D.

This is 3D conversion; much like what George Lucas is doing with his “Star Wars” saga, Cameron’s doing the same with this film here. However, there wasn’t much depth to the films overall 3D look. I felt that “Phantom Menace” has a better conversion job, mainly because of the context of the movie in some ways needed it. That movie is an action movie; this movie is a drama, plain and simple. So, I guess the 3D in this film is really a double-edged sword.

“Titanic 3D” doesn’t hit theaters nationwide till April, just in time for the 100th Anniversary of the S.S. Titanic’s maiden voyage, which is smart marketing in my opinion. People will go, oh yes, people will go, and lucky enough Cameron is giving us the option to see it in 3D or 2D. If you’re interested in revisiting the film, go see it in 2D, save the extra $3 for candy, you’re not really missing much.

MOVIE GRADE: B

3D GRADE: C-

OVERALL GRADE: C+

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