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"TITANIC"
(1997) (Leonardo DiCaprio, Kate Winslet) (PG-13)


At-A-Glace Content Summary

Alcohol/Drugs Mild
Blood/Gross Stuff Mild
Disrespectful/Bad Attitude Heavy
Frightening/Tense Scenes Heavy
Gun/Weapons Heavy
Imitative Behavior Heavy
Jump Scenes None
Music (Scary/Tense) Heavy
Music (Inappropriate) None
Profanity Heavy
Sex/Nudity Heavy
Smoking Moderate
Tense Family Scenes Heavy
Topics to Talk About Moderate
Violence Heavy


NOTE:
The following review was done back in 1997 and due to changes in how we review films for content since then, some of the following might have a different feel to it, and thus should be considered a bare minimum.
QUICK TAKE:
Drama: Two lovers from different societal classes must deal with their differences and the fact that they're on board the doomed cruise ship, the R.M.S. Titanic.
PLOT:
Brock Lovett (BILL PAXTON) and his oceanographic crew have been searching the wreck of the R.M.S. Titanic for a diamond, "The Heart of the Ocean," originally worn by Louis XVI that today would be one of the most valuable jewels in the world. Unable to find it, his crew does find a painting of a nude woman wearing what appears to the necklace he's looking for. Thousands of miles away, Rose (GLORIA STUART), a centenarian survivor of the famous tragedy, sees Lovett on TV and recognizes the sketch. Meeting the explorer miles above where the wreck lies, Rose explains that she's the person in the sketch and then goes to tell her story about the Titanic.

Eighty-five years earlier, as a young woman, Rose DeWitt Bukater (KATE WINSLET) comes from high society and is engaged to marry tycoon Cal Hockley (BILLY ZANE), an elitist who doesn't treat her well. Her mother, Ruth (FRANCES FISHER), urges Rose to put up with his behavior so that they'll remain in the wealthy upper class of life. Rose, however, can't stand it anymore, and once at sea, climbs onto the back railing of the Titanic, preparing to jump. Her luck changes when Jack Dawson (LEONARDO DiCAPRIO), a third class passenger who won his way on board via a card game, stops her from jumping.

Soon, a romance flowers between the two, much to the dismay of Cal and Ruth, although the unsinkable Molly Brown (KATHY BATES) thinks it's a hoot that Jack's stirring things up a bit. Their love is threatened, however, when Cal's thug assistant, Spicer Lovejoy (DAVID WARNER), plots to put an end to it, as well as when the Titanic hits an iceberg and begins to sink. As the ship takes on water and Captain Smith (BERNARD HILL) and managing director Bruce Ismay (JONATHAN HYDE) decide what to do, Jack and Rose try to stay together as long as they can.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
Preteens probably won't, but teens might just be drawn by teen heartthrobs DiCaprio and Winslet. Additionally, the story may draw others as well.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: PG-13
For disaster related peril and violence, nudity, sensuality and brief language.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • LEONARDO DICAPRIO plays the young carefree street urchin who smokes a little and has sex with Rose. Other than that, he's quite the gentleman with her.
  • KATE WINSLET plays the upper class young woman who lets loose once Jack breaks her free from her rigid confines. She drinks and smokes a little, and does have sex with Jack.
  • BILLY ZANE plays Rose's snobbish fiancÚ who looks down on Jack, and also on Rose, although in different ways.
  • CAST, CREW, & TECHNICAL INFO

    HOW OTHERS RATED THIS MOVIE


    Curious if this title is entertaining, any good, and/or has any artistic merit?
    Then read OUR TAKE of this film.


    (Note: The "Our Take" review of this title examines the film's artistic merits and does not take into account any of the possibly objectionable material listed below).


    OUR WORD TO PARENTS:
    Being a film about a sinking ship, there are obviously many tense and suspenseful moments that may be too intense for younger viewers. 1 "f" and 12 "s" words highlight the worst of the profanity. There are two scenes with sexually related material -- one that's more sensual with bare breasts, the other is where Rose and Jack have sex. Apart from the ship sinking and people dying, there is some human generated violence and even more bad attitudes of the rich toward the poor. Since many teens will probably want to see this film, we suggest that you examine the content to determine how appropriate it is for them, you, or other members of your family.


    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • Lovett's crew celebrates with champagne.
  • Throughout the flashback scenes, we see various people drinking onboard the ship, including Cal and his associates who drink brandy several times, and others who drink wine or champagne during meals.
  • Jack, Rose and others drink beer at a third class party, and Rose downs half a glass in one gulp.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • A man has a slightly bloody nose after Rose punches him.
  • Two men who've been shot are a little bloody.
  • A passenger's head is quite bloody after he's been injured.
  • We see many dead bodies in the water after the sinking.
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • The ship itself, representative of the early 20th century, is segregated by class.
  • Cal is extremely condescending toward Rose, and his behavior gets worse as the story wears on. He tells her what she can and can't do, with more of the latter occurring as the story progresses. He says, "You'll honor me, the way a wife is required to honor a husband," among other things, all in a very condescending and confrontational manner.
  • Cal, Rose's mother, and most of the other upperclass people look down on Jack and the rest of the third class passengers (Cal tells him, "Dawnson, you could almost pass for a gentleman."). Additionally, when it's time to evacuate the ship, the third class passengers are left locked below deck until they have evacuated the upper class people.
  • Cal and his associates plant the diamond on Jack and then accuse him of trying to steal it.
  • A man makes a comment, "Machinery and woman don't mix."
  • Cal grabs an abandoned child and acts like the guardian to be allowed onto a lifeboat.
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • After stopping Rose from jumping from the ship, Jack must save her as she slips and dangles from the end of it.
  • The second half of the film becomes one, long suspense scene as the ship begins to take on water and sink as the passengers try to make their way up through the many levels and get to the upper deck.
  • Jack finds himself handcuffed to a pipe in a room filling with water. Rose then tries to find help and must wade through chin deep water to do so.
  • Cal chases after Rose and Jack, firing a handgun at them many times.
  • Rose and Jack travel back through the deep water and rush to unlock a gate as the water quickly rises around them.
  • The final sinking sequence is quite tense, as are the moments afterwards where the survivors find themselves in freezing cold water.
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • Handgun: Carried by Lovejoy and later taken by Cal who shoots at Jack and Rose as they flee from him.
  • Handguns: Aimed by the ship's crew at passengers to keep them from overcrowding the lifeboats.
  • Handgun: Used by a crew member to shoot several passengers and then, seeing what he's done, to shoot himself.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "Moron," "Bastards," "Shut up," "Slut" and "Whore" (what Cal calls Rose), and "Bloody" (the British adjective).
  • Despondent about her life, Rose prepares to jump to her death from the back of the ship. Later, a man shoots himself with a gun.
  • Jack teaches Rose how to spit "like a man," and later she spits in Cal's face as he tries to drag her away.
  • Rose gives Lovejoy "the finger."
  • Rose poses nude for Jack so that he can draw her.
  • JUMP SCENES
  • None.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • There is a moderate amount of suspenseful music, with most of it obviously occurring in the second half of the film as the ship begins to sink.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • With all of the panic and pandemonium toward the end, there may be more exclamations (especially of the religious variety) than noted.
  • At least 1 "f' word, 12 "s" words, 8 damns, 6 hells, 3 asses, 2 S.O.B.'s, and 9 uses of "G-damn," 4 uses each of "For God's sakes" and "Oh God," 2 uses each of "God," "Jesus" and "My God," and 1 use each of "Jesus Christ," "Christ," "Oh my God," and "God Almighty" as exclamations.
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • Lovett's crew finds a drawing of a Rose who's nude (bare breasts). Later (in flashback) Rose looks at Jack's drawings and sees several more sketches containing full frontal nudity.
  • Rose's dress shows a little bit of cleavage in one scene.
  • Rose poses nude for Jack to draw her, and there are many glimpses of her bare breasts with the rest of her body blocked by Jack's drawing pad. Back in the present, old Rose comments, "Did we do it?" in response to the crew's intrigue as to what happened next, but she says they didn't (at least not until the following).
  • In the backseat of a car in stowage Rose tells Jack to put his hands on her. He feels her clothed breast, they passionately kiss, and then have sex (we see them, sweaty, undressed, and out of breath afterwards, but don't see any objectionable nudity).
  • SMOKING
  • Lovett has an unlit cigar.
  • Jack smokes in several scenes.
  • Rose starts to smoke in one scene, but her mother says she doesn't like her doing that, and Cal snuffs out the cigarette. Later, Rose takes a cigarette from a man and smokes it.
  • Throughout the flashback scenes, we see various people smoking onboard the ship, including Cal and his associates who smoke cigars.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • Rose's mother tells her that she can't see Jack anymore.
  • The sinking causes families to be separated as fathers and husbands are left on board while their families leave in the lifeboats.
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • The real life events that inspired the film, and its accuracy in portraying them.
  • VIOLENCE
  • One man punches another man after the second's bad hand in cards loses their boarding tickets.
  • Cal overturns a breakfast table in anger while mad at Rose.
  • Cal slaps Rose, calling her a "slut" for posing nude for Jack.
  • Lovejoy punches Jack who's handcuffed to a pipe.
  • Cal violently grabs Rose when angry with her.
  • Rose punches another passenger who's dragging her away from Jack.
  • Third class passengers and crew members fight as the passengers try to get through locked gates that the crew won't let them through. One aims a pistol at them while another pokes them with an ax handle.
  • A crew member, holding off panicking passengers with a gun, shoots two of them. Seeing what he's done, he shoots himself in the head.
  • Cal fires a gun several times at Jack and Rose as they flee from him.
  • Many people are killed as they fall from the ship, have parts of it land on them, and drown and/or freeze to death.



  • Reviewed December 9, 1997 / Posted December 19, 1997

    Other new reviews available this week include:

    [Boyhood] [Get On Up] [Guardians of the Galaxy] [A Most Wanted Man]

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