Voyage Beyond Affection: Titanic (A Marxist Criticism)

Whole life savings, pennies, dimes and quarters? Would you bet everything you have in exchange for a ride on one of the most luxurious ship at the moment? If you were given a chance to ride the “Unsinkable Ship,” would you give everything up? In the movie Titanic, written and directed by James Cameron, a true to life story that happened in the year 1912, social differences were evident. Indeed, this movie serves as a representation of the division of classes during that time. Resulting to different treatment on the first, second and third-class people which determined who survived and perished.

“I don’t see what all the fuss is about. It doesn’t look any bigger than the Mauritania.” “Jack, you are pazzo. You bet everything we have.” “When you got nothing, got nothing to lose.” The movie starts at the present time, where a captain was in search for the “Heart of the Ocean,” instead they found a painting of a passenger, who was named Rose, who was still alive at the moment and she was the one who told them about what happened on “The Ship of Dreams.” It all started when Jack bet everything he has to have tickets to ride Titanic and Rose riding it with first-class tickets without any sense of excitement seen on her. Even Rose being engaged and a part of the first-class people and Jack being in third class, a form of affection grew between them in just a short span of time. Unfortunately, the ship made contact with an iceberg causing it too sink gradually, life boats were prepared but they could only cater half of the passengers. As a result, first-class passengers, women and children, were the first to catch a ride on them, they were the priority and those on the lower class didn’t have the chance to survive due to class conflicts. In the end, Titanic sunk at the bottom of the ocean, which resulted to killing half of the passengers it catered.

Taking consideration of the Marxist approach, James Cameron has greatly taken into account the social differences that was experienced by the passengers of Titanic. Unjust treatment was shown, given that, first-class people could freely travel around the ship and were given the finest facilities, middle-class people were given fewer privileges but enjoyed the same amenities while, the third-class people were forced to stay at the bottom of the ship and were not allowed to make contact with higher class people. The survival and perishment of the passengers depended on the class they were in. If only third-class passengers were in the first-class, they would have the chance to survive and be prioritized in riding the life boats. Also, they would have been treated better and enjoyed the same facilities as the ones on the higher classes. There was a clear demonstration of class conflict in the movie Titanic, specifically when classes are separated and treated differently, the chances of survival were determined by class given that only 3% of the first-class passengers drowned compared to the 16% of the second-class and the highest of them all, 45% of the third class.

Titanic, over-all, was an exceptional movie. It successfully shown the class conflicts during that time and event. Given the time period it was made, great cinematography, music, blockings and artists were generated in which, these were plus points for the making of the movie. The plot sequence was transitioned properly and the literary device used, flashback, was effective. Actors, lead and supporting, gave a tremendous portrayal of their roles which gave lives to the characters they portrayed. The theme song or ending song of the movie, “My Heart Will Go On” gave justice to the film and it struck the hearts of the viewers, it was also a great conclusion to the movie that despite everything that happened everyone should learn to move on and know that life will always go on. Just like Rose in the movie, would you finally set everything free or hold on to the burden of the past forever?