Director: James Cameron
Cast: Kate Winslet, Leonardo DiCaprio
If any film should be redone in 3-D, it’s Titanic. And if any filmmaker should be the one doing the redoing, it’s James Cameron. He’s been a pioneer in advancing this cinematic technology for years now, from his underwater documentaries to the record-breaking juggernaut that is Avatar. And so ironically, for a film that hasn’t got an ounce of understatement in its three-hour-plus running time, Titanic in 3-D is really rather subtle and finely tuned. There’s nothing gimmicky about the conversion process; it’s immersive, it actually enhances the viewing experience the way a third dimension ideally should. It’s also gorgeous: crisp and tactile, warm and inviting — until all hell breaks loose, that is. So often when 2-D films are transformed into 3-D, they’re done so hastily with results that are murky and inaccessible. Cameron and his team clearly took their time. So while the romantic first half of the film remains more emotionally compelling, the disastrous second half has become even more visually dazzling. Cameron has stayed true to the content of his 1997 film, the winner of 11 Oscars including best picture — and that includes his clunky script filled with hokey dialogue and broad characters. What also remains intact is the earnestness of Titanic, the absence of snark or irony, and the sensation that you’re watching a big, ambitious, good-old-fashioned spectacle that can withstand the test of time. Plus, it’s just fun to see the buxom, feisty Kate Winslet and boyish, charming Leonardo DiCaprio in the roles that made them superstars once more on the big screen. PG-13 for disaster-related peril, nudity, sensuality and brief language. 195 minutes. — AP
DVD classics: Releases you may have missed over the years
In 1898, John Henry Patterson, a British engineer, is sent to Kenya to helm a construction project. Work gets delayed because a couple of lions wreak havoc. He teams up with hunter Charles Remington to put an end to the menace, but then things take a grisly turn.
What’s good: Edge-of-your-seat thrills combined with a lurking supernatural twist to the story
Cast: Michael Douglas, Val Kilmer, Tom Wilkinson
Sea of Love (1989)
Burnt-out NYPD cop Frank Keller is put on the track of a serial killer who murders male victims while the hit song Sea of love plays on the jukebox. He falls in love with mysterious shoe saleswoman Helen Cruger along the way, and realises she could be a prime suspect in the case. But Keller is too far gone to care.
What’s good: Jaw-dropping performance by Al Pacino, as the alcoholic, self-destructive cop who falls in love
What’s bad: Tough one — maybe the bloodiness?
Cast: Al Pacino, Ellen Barkin, John Goodman
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