6 Reasons Why 'Titanic' Still Resonates With This Generation
This week marks the 103rd anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic.
Of course, when we think about the cultural influence of the Titanic, it's hard not to think of the 1997 James Cameron film starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet.
Creating a cinematic version of a well-known tragedy is no easy feat, as there is a fine line between paying homage and exploiting an event.
Cameron's movie, however, is arguably one of the former. "Titanic," although heavily focused on the love story of Jack and Rose, is a sensitive and tactful portrayal of the devastating accident.
It's no surprise "Titanic" is still an extremely popular film; it is continuously aired on TV, and it was rebooted in 3D in 2012, which coincided with the sinking's 100th anniversary.
Here are six reasons why we still return to this film over and over again, almost two decades after its initial release:
1. "Make it count."
We still adore the speech made by Jack Dawson at the dinner table, in part because it's true to how many of us strive to live our own lives.
His character is the epitome of a minimalist; he embraces the idea of living life with only the essentials.
Plus, it's that much more romantic when Jack slips Rose the note: "Make it count. Meet me at the clock."
2. "I'm flying, Jack!"
Real talk: How many of us have recreated the classic "I'm flying" pose while on a boat? I'm guessing everyone is nodding because we've all done it.
The scene when Jack and Rose have their first kiss is a completely swoon-worthy, iconic image burned into everyone's brains.
It's basically our representation of the entire film.
3. The film has a great message of resilience.
There are so many strong characters in this film, whether they are lead or minor roles.
One of the most heart-wrenching scenes is when the string quartet plays amid the sinking ship. At the end of their song, they disband, only to return to one another to continue playing.
It's clear they feel the need to continue playing for the sake of the passengers, as well as themselves. It is where they belong. (Cue tears.)
4. We learned about loyalty and love.
For members of Gen-Y, we were just tweens when we first saw "Titanic," but it gave us an image of what we imagined true love to be. The idea can be summed up with the famous line, "You jump, I jump."
We loved the scene when Rose jumps back onto the sinking ship because she can't leave Jack's side, and we cried when Mr. and Mrs. Straus held hands in bed as water rushed underneath them.
We discovered the meaning of loyalty through these characters, and we crafted an ideal for our adulthood.
5. Rose is a kickass feminist role model.
Despite some poor choices along the way, Rose is a woman to look up to (as so many of us did when we first saw this film).
She's smart enough to know what she truly wants, and she's bold enough to get it. This is especially impressive during a time period when women weren't always regarded as strong or independent.
We love to cheer on Rose when she spits in Cal's eye or when she changes her name at the end of the film.
6. "Titanic" allows us to form a connection with an event deeply rooted in our country's history.
For some of us, our first exposure to this historical event was through the 1997 film. And, for many of us, this led to further interest in the tragedy, which popularized follow-up documentaries and articles.
The film, although created in our modern culture, allows us to emotionally connect with something that happened over 100 years ago. And that, in and of itself, is pretty awesome.