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    How was this review?

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    Stars:Leonardo deCaprio, Kate Winslet, Bill Paxton
    If only all movies were this easy to review. Titanic is one of the best movies I've seen, and history will rank it with the True Great Epics along with Braveheart and Sparticus. Forget all the jokes about knowing how the movie will end. Yes, we know the boat will sink. The impending fate of Titanic adds the tragic element which makes the film so emotional, but this movie isn't about the sinking.

    Everyone knows what a huge fan of James Cameron's films I am. I might be wary of a "love story" that costs over $200 million to make, but with Cameron at the helm, I was sure that Titanic wasn't going to be another Waterworld. The movie's 3 hours 14 minute length might scare some people away, but there is no time wasted.

    The story is told from a flashback perspective. The "present-time" sequences, while they make up the vast minority of the movie, are still very high in importance. They keep things in perspective, pulling you back into "reality" from time to time. And the transitions between the two time periods are very smooth and interesting to watch.

    The special effects are near-flawless (there was one scene where you could tell the Titanic was a miniature). Unlike a movie such as, say, Lost World, Titanic's special effects take a back seat to the writing, which focuses on the human element. And the true story of the Titanic is better at exploring humanity than any fictional story I can think of.

    Imagine yourself onboard the crowning achievement of Man: the most massive vessel ever constructed, unprecedented luxury, something that "God Himself could not sink." Look at this marvel that we have created. Look at our capabilities. We are more powerful than nature itself.

    The separation between socioeconomic classes also plays very, very heavily. The wealthy would have nothing to do with the lower class. And why should they? The poor have no talent, no sophistication. They are barely even human. Those well-off deserve perfection in their accommodations and service. And, in the event that the ship sinks, they should be seated in the lifeboats first. After all, the upper-class has more to lose.

    If you can understand my sarcasm, you understand a vital part of the Titanic story. Another important part can be conveyed in the form of a question which was posed on an episode of Dateline: NBC. If you had a seat on a lifeboat, but your spouse did not, would you stay on the lifeboat and live, or relinquish the seat and die alongside your spouse? Bear in mind that the death would be by drowning, one of the worst ways to die in my opinion. If you somehow don't drown, then you would freeze to death in the frigid Atlantic. How strong is love against the desire to live? These are the questions Cameron explores so dramatically in his story.

    Strange. I usually go into the theater experience before I actually talk about the meat of the movie. Better late than never, I suppose. We went to the premiere screen in Colorado Springs, Carmike 10. The sound in the theater was perfect, and added a lot the Titanic experience. But it wasn't loud enough to drown out the conversation between two very large women sitting to my immediate right. As if it weren't bad enough that these women were talking loudly, they apparently suffered some strange biological affliction where their brain cells were converted to fat cells. At one point, one of the women actually said (and I'm not making this up), "This must be where they hit that big rock." It was an iceberg, you idiot. And could you say it any louder?

    So often do I complain about the gross indiscretion of my fellow movie-goers. What kind of world are we living in? People who have difficulty FITTING in the roomy movie theater seats should wait until the movie comes out on video. And people should be able to refrain from carrying on a long, loud conversation until AFTER the movie has ended. Too many times have I had to refrain myself from becoming violent toward other people in the theater. To quote Dilbert, "Must -- Control -- Fists -- Of -- Death."

    Whether or not you are in a theater with citizens that respect your right to enjoy the movie, you have to see Titanic. Do I smell a Best Picture Oscar?

    Comments? E-mail movies@aldebaran.net