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Titanic 3D: A Chance to Relive ‘97
Titanic was momentous and its effect on pop culture was probably bigger than its effect on cinema. There hasn’t been a film since Titanic that has managed to create such a fuss; attracting everybody and their grandmother to the cinema, and dominating everybody’s conversations regardless of age or ethnicity. Even the Harry Potter series, arguably the biggest films of this millennium, have a fan base that maxes out at a certain age. Besides, the Titanic onslaught was also aural; Celine Dion’s theme song was inescapable and remained that way for a few years after. It’s actually a wonder that something so fantastically irritating was so popular, but luckily it seems we’re being spared the musical assault this time around.
In hindsight, Titanic is pretty cheesy. Actually scratch pretty, it’s super cheesy. The dialogue is basically clunker after clunker; one of them in particular: “A woman’s heart is a deep ocean of secrets,” sounds like something out of a bad dating manual. The younger Rose contends with her share of duds where Kate Winslet seems very ill at ease while she delivers them. In fact, she only loosens up somewhat when she starts to fall in love with Jack; it’s the romance that enchanted viewers the first time around that has kept the film culturally relevant and generated it so much goodwill. It’s the epitome of a love story. You have two very attractive leads acting out a forbidden love story between a girl stifled by upper class norms, and a free spirited artist from the wrong side of the tracks. Toss in her stubborn, arrogant fiancé, who she’s being pressured into marrying to save her family from financial ruin, and you have just the right elements of a great forbidden love. The Titanic going down is just window dressing and the only reason we care about the accident is because of its effect on Jack and Rose’s relationship. As a viewer, you spend the length of the film rooting for them to end up together; the iceberg is just one more obstacle keeping them apart. And yes, the part where Rose lets Jack go at the end is still as tear inducing as ever.
It’s interesting to see Leonardo DiCaprio at his teen heartthrob peak. It’s easy to forget now but back in the ‘90s DiCaprio was inescapable; he was to the ‘90s what Zac Efron and Taylor Lautner are to this decade.
The 3D effect adds considerable depth to the picture but like most reissues, the real draw here is seeing the film in the cinema; the 3D doesn’t add enough to warrant another viewing if you’re just lukewarm about the film, or if you’ve already seen it a trillion times on TV. The true experience here is reliving 1997 all over again; in other words, feeling nostalgia. Whether it’s for the days when ‘blockbuster’ wasn’t just a code name for a superhero flick; for when film events weren’t a dime a dozen and managed to capture the general public’s attention for extended periods of time; or for when one film would come along and give everybody something in common to be excited about.
First, it’s important to establish that we cannot place the blame in its entirety on Ramez Galal for his sadistic show. A big part of the blame should fall on us, the viewers, who eagerly wait for pranks and spike the show’s ratings, even reaching the point where café owners will blast these shows on large TVs to attract customers. It’s time to admit that there’s a sadist in all of us.
The premise of the show is a guest will come in to film an episode about the World Cup on a zodiac boat out at sea. The boat malfunctions, one of the presenters dives in to see what’s wrong, and the events quickly escalate to the boat sinking with the guest and a fake shark attack.
In the episode with Rania Mahmoud Yassin and Mohamed Riad, it’s interesting to point out that the boat didn’t sink entirely, and Rania kept a firm clutch on her sunglasses in a situation where any normal person would’ve let go of his/her belongings in exchange for safety. We ignored these points at first, but after several mentions on TV and by other viewers, we couldn’t help but wonder.
The show comes with a lot of legal issues this year, of which, a case that Athar El Hakim filed against Galal, banning her episode from airing, under the pretence that the prank extremely frightened her. The truth behind that is in question, after a video of her discussing her pay for the episode was leaked. Other legal issues concerning the show include damage to marine life from planting metal poles to support the hidden cameras.
Because nothing is black and white, it’s important to admit Galal’s sense of humour and experience, especially when it’s imitated by an artist like Mohamed Fouad in his show “Fo’sh Fil Mo’askar”, a stale and completely void of humour prank show.
We have to admit, we were impressed by the shark boat Galal uses to rescue the guests. He is a smart actor who was able to establish himself within Ramadan TV and create shows that people wait for year to year.
The sequel to the 2012’s sleeper hit, Think Like a Man, is unfortunately, not as smart or funny as it thinks it is. Based on the bestselling relationship-advice book, Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man, the story seems to have taken on more than it can handle and as a result, ends up bringing in a whole load of concern and very little excitement.
Set in L.A – before travelling down to Las Vegas - Think Like a Man Too follows the story of four male friends; Dominic, (Ealy), a dreamer and aspiring chef who becomes involved with the career-obsessed Lauren (Henson). Michael, (Jenkins), a real Mamma’s Boy whose unusual attachment to his widowed mother, Loretta (Lewis) is causing concern with his current girlfriend – and wife-to-be - Candace (Hall). Zeke (Malco), a serious player and a true ladies man who is forced to try and court Mya (Good). Jeremy (Ferrara), a man who has been in a relationship with Kristen (Union) for over nine years, but is refusing to grow up and pop the question, and finally, there is Cedric (Hart); the divorced guy who enjoys dishing out advice and provides the necessary insights into the workings of a woman’s mind.
So, when the girls stumble upon a new self-help book - written by comedian and game-host, Steve Harvey - they decide it’s time to turn the tables on their respective partners, but it’s not long before the men figure out what is going on and begin doing the same thing.
Directed by Tim Story - see Barbershop or any of the Fantastic Four movies – and written by Keith Merryman and David A. Newman, Think Like a Man Too appears overworked, disjointed and a little timeworn. There is very little comedy hiding beneath the neon lights of the infamous Sin City, and although the characters shared a decent amount of chemistry on screen – special nods to Hart who ends up carrying most of the comedy as the bitter and “knowledgeable’ divorcee – but, there are just too many of them to keep up with, let alone fully connect to.
Think Like a Man Too is neither ground-breaking nor completely dreadful; relatively funny but overly long and a little loose, the movie offers too many storylines - and very little relationship advice - but not enough story, or focus, to see any of them through until the end.