Critics Consensus

A mostly unqualified triumph for James Cameron, who offers a dizzying blend of spectacular visuals and old-fashioned melodrama.



Total Count: 189


Audience Score

User Ratings: 35,797,635
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Movie Info

This spectacular epic re-creates the ill-fated maiden voyage of the White Star Line's $7.5 million R.M.S Titanic and the tragic sea disaster of April 15, 1912. Running over three hours and made with the combined contributions of two major studios (20th Century-Fox, Paramount) at a cost of more than $200 million, Titanic ranked as the most expensive film in Hollywood history at the time of its release, and became the most successful. Writer-director James Cameron employed state-of-the-art digital special effects for this production, realized on a monumental scale and spanning eight decades. Inspired by the 1985 discovery of the Titanic in the North Atlantic, the contemporary storyline involves American treasure-seeker Brock Lovett (Bill Paxton) retrieving artifacts from the submerged ship. Lovett looks for diamonds but finds a drawing of a young woman, nude except for a necklace. When 102-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 scene then 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 fiance Cal Hockley (Billy Zane). After the April 10th launch, Rose develops a passionate interest in Jack, and Cal's reaction is vengeful. At midpoint in the film, the Titanic slides against the iceberg and water rushes into the front compartments. Even engulfed, Cal continues to pursue Jack and Rose as the massive liner begins its descent. Cameron launched the project after seeing Robert Ballard's 1987 National Geographic documentary on the wreckage. Blueprints of the real Titanic were followed during construction at Fox's custom-built Rosarito, Mexico studio, where a hydraulics system moved an immense model in a 17-million-gallon water tank. During three weeks aboard the Russian ship Academik Keldysh, underwater sequences were filmed with a 35mm camera in a titanium case mounted on the Russian submersible Mir 1. When the submersible neared the wreck, a video camera inside a remote-operated vehicle was sent into the Titanic's 400-foot bow, bringing back footage of staterooms, furniture and chandeliers. On November 1, 1997, the film had its world premiere at the 10th Tokyo International Film Festival. ~ Bhob Stewart, Rovi


Leonardo DiCaprio
as Jack Dawson
Kate Winslet
as Rose DeWitt Bukater
Billy Zane
as Cal Hockley
Kathy Bates
as Molly Brown
Frances Fisher
as Ruth DeWitt Bukater
Bill Paxton
as Brock Lovett
Bernard Hill
as Capt. Smith
Jonathan Hyde
as Bruce Ismay
Victor Garber
as Thomas Andrews
David Warner
as Spicer Lovejoy
Danny Nucci
as Fabrizio
Jonny Phillips
as Second Officer Charles Herbert Lightoller
Ioan Gruffudd
as Fifth Officer Harold Lowe
Suzy Amis
as Lizzy Calvert
Bernard Fox
as Col. Archibald Gradie
Lewis Abernathy
as Lewis Bodine
Nicholas Cascone
as Bobby Buell
Ewan Stewart
as 1st Officer Murdoch
Mark Lindsay Chapman
as Chief Officer Wilde
Anatoly M. Sagalevitch
as Anatoly Milkailavich
Jonathan Phillips
as Second Officer Charles Herbert Lightoller
Jason Barry
as Tommy Ryan
Richard Graham
as Quartermaster Rowe
Paul Brightwell
as Quartermaster Hichens
Ron Donachie
as Master At Arms
Gloria Stuart
as Rose (Older)
Eric Braeden
as John Jacob Astor
Charlotte Chatton
as Madeleine Astor
Michael Ensign
as Benjamin Guggenheim
Fannie Brett
as Madame Aubert
Jenette Goldstein
as Irish Mommy
Craig Kelly
as Harold Bride, Junior Wireless Operator
Linda Kerns
as 3rd Class Woman
Amy Gaipa
as Trudy Bolt
Martin Jarvis
as Sir Duff Gordon
Rosalind Ayres
as Lady Duff Gordon
Rochelle Rose
as Countess of Rothes
Jonathan Evans-Jones
as Wallace Hartley
Brian Walsh
as Irish Man
Rocky Taylor
as Bert Cartmell
Alexandre Owens
as Cora Cartmell
Simon Crane
as Fourth Officer Boxhall
Edward Fletcher
as 6th Officer Moody
Scott G. Anderson
as Frederick Fleet
Martin East
as Lookout Lee
Gregory Cooke
as Jack Phillips
Liam Tuohy
as Chief Baker Joughin
James Lancaster
as Father Byles
Elsa Raven
as Ida Straus
Lew Palter
as Isidor Straus
Reece P. Thompson III
as Irish Little Boy
Laramie Landis
as Irish Little Girl
Amber Waddell
as Cal's Crying Girl
Alison Waddell
as Cal's Crying Girl
John Walcutt
as 1st Class Husband
Terry Forrestal
as Chief Engineer Bell
Derek Lea
as Leading Stoker Barrett
Richard Ashton
as Carpenter John Hutchinson
Sean M. Nepita
as Elevator Operator
Brendan Connolly
as Scotland Road Steward
Garth Wilton
as 1st Class Waiter
Martin Laing
as Promenade Deck Steward
Richard Fox
as Steward No. 1
Nick Meaney
as Steward No. 2
Kevin Owers
as Steward No. 3
Mark Capri
as Steward No. 4
Marc Cass
as Hold Steward No. 1
Paul Herbert
as Hold Steward No. 2
Emmett James
as 1st Class Steward
Christopher Byrne
as Stairwell Steward
Oliver Page
as Steward Barnes
James Garrett
as Titanic Porter
Erik Holland
as Olaf Dahl
Jari Kinnunen
as Bjorn Gunderson
Anders Falk
as Olaus Gunderson
Martin Hub
as Slovakian Father
Seth Adkins
as Slovakian 3 Year Old Boy
Barry Dennen
as Praying Man
Vern Urich
as Man in Water
Rebecca Jane Klingler
as Mother at Stern
Kathleen S. Dunn
as Woman in Water
Romeo Francis
as Syrian Man
Mandana Marino
as Syrian Woman
Van Ling
as Chinese Man
as Olaf
Shay Duffin
as Pubkeeper
Greg Ellis
as Carpathia Steward
Diana Morgan
as News Reporter
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News & Interviews for Titanic

Critic Reviews for Titanic

All Critics (189) | Top Critics (57) | Fresh (168) | Rotten (21)

  • No meager disaster movie, greased by generic formula and goosed by big-bucks technology... Titanic is one big, bruising movie that will appeal on different levels to different audiences.

    Dec 26, 2018 | Full Review…
  • Cameron's aim was to set the most intimate love story possible against one of the century's biggest tragedies, and he very nearly pulls it off. DiCaprio has a captivating presence in a role that might have been written for a young Clark Gable.

    Jan 2, 2018 | Full Review…

    Jack Mathews

    Top Critic
  • Cameron has devised a tender love story between Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio that serves as the main focus of Titanic's storyline, and it works beautifully.

    Feb 25, 2014 | Full Review…

    Paul Tatara

    Top Critic
  • If computer-generated special effects have overpowered human-generated drama, Cameron seizes that dangerously cold technology and recasts it as dream and delirium, profoundly human in its sources and longings.

    Feb 25, 2014 | Rating: 4/4 | Full Review…
  • The execution is state-of-the-art and breathtaking. Titanic offers the full compass of courage and cowardice, and it stands as an achievement that truly is a night to remember at the movies.

    Feb 25, 2014 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…
  • Titanic provides an absorbing blend of historical fact and old-fashioned Hollywood tearjerking.

    Feb 25, 2014 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Titanic

  • Dec 23, 2015
    "Titanic" is an amazing drama/romantic movie of 1997. The plot to "Titanic" is that a group of scientists discover the sunken ship named "Titanic". A woman hears about this and calls up the scientists and claims to have been a first class passenger on the almighty ship "Titanic", she tells them about her survival and love affair she had on the ship. The movie's opening scene is showing footage of the "Titanic" leaving its dock. The last hour of the movie is just pretty much just "Jack" portrayed by "Leonard Dicaprio" and "Rose" portrayed by "Kate Winslet" trying to find a way off of "Titanic", which is suspenseful but can drag on from time to time. "Titanic's" climax is exciting, suspenseful and thrilling at the same time. The plot to the movie is excellent, but there are some issues and unanswered questions at the end of the movie. The acting in this movie is superb; "Leonardo Dicaprio" and "Kate Winslet" are two incredible actors and are stunning in this movie. "James Horner" does a great job at capturing the romance between "Jack" and "Rose". He also does a perfect job at making suspenseful and thrilling music. "James Cameron" is definitely one of cinema's greatest movie directors, he shoots movies beautifully and "Titanic" is no exception. He doesn't shake the camera or use close ups, no he captures a scene perfectly. If you are a person who either enjoys "Cameron's" movies or are a fan of the "Unsinkable Ship" then I highly recommend do you watch "Titanic" as it is an amazing drama/romantic with amazing acting, superb music and a beautifully shot movie of 1997. Although the movie does have some issues, these issues being some unanswered questions and the last hour dragging on and on. I give 1997's "Titanic" a 9/10.
    Steve G Super Reviewer
  • Feb 15, 2014
    I saw this on DVD for the first time in 2014 as part of a DVD binge weekend during 4 days of snow. I liked it because it has a real story--although in retrospect the poor rich girl who was going to kill herself because her fiance was too rich or too controlling was a little over the top, but this is from the perspective of a woman (me) who has lived all that drama decades ago. The sets were outstanding. Really captured the sense of what it was like to be trapped on a sinking ship --talk about being trapped between the devil and the deep blue sea. The class warfare was interesting. Still fighting that. Nit pick: why did Rose keep the multi-million dollar necklace? It was given to her by someone she hated and it was more like a handcuff. And then why did she dump it into the ocean--I got that it was supposed to close a chapter on her life, but it was the wrong symbol. And she has this granddaughter--did she ever think maybe the granddaughter could use a little help paying off her student loans? As I say, those are nit picks, It was a good movie.
    Bathsheba M Super Reviewer
  • Oct 22, 2012
    A great film and the capstone of Cameron's directoral career, although I like almost everything else he did better.
    Jason 123 D Super Reviewer
  • Sep 14, 2012
    One of Hollywood's great "dumb epics". It's absurd, melodramatic, filled with anachronisms and cartoonish characters . . . and yet, it's also highly re-watchable. I don't really know why, but I'm always completely invested in this goofy love story (especially when the boat starts to sink, which still has some of the most thrilling sequences in cinema history). You don't have to like the movie, but I sincerely doubt that people hate it as much as they say they do.
    Alec B Super Reviewer

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