Did She Love Him [Titanic]

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Did She Love Him [Titanic]

Post by LoneRider on Thu Dec 21, 2017 1:52 am

Recently I was mulling over the film Titanic. Since 2014 that love story's been a guilty pleasure of mine. From the movie's plot we know that Rose, the protagonist, married a fellow named Calvert after the film's end. Honestly, having read this blog post (linked https://them0vieblog.com/2012/04/03/my-heart-will-go-on-titanic-we-need-to-talk-about-calvert/). Interestingly enough I first mulled this point in late 2016 and revisited it again today, shortly after reading the excellent article on emotional intelligence.

This begs the question. Did Rose really move on after Jack? And far more importantly, did she really love her husband? There are some rather compelling arguments that she didn't. One of which is this line Rose says to her granddaughter:

“And I’ve never spoken of him until now, not to anyone. Not even your grandfather. A woman’s heart is a deep ocean of secrets. But now you all know there was a man named Jack Dawson, and that he saved me, in every way that a person can be saved.”

She never told her husband a thing about Jack.That smacks of blatant dishonesty on Rose's part. I can't help but feel that the poor bastard wasn't loved to the extent that Jack does. I mean Calvert gave Rose all the remaining decades of his life for very likely a love that probably wasn't as great as the one she had for Jack. To me my sympathies lie with Calvert.

This post also helps illustrate further why I sympathize with Calvert: https://movies.stackexchange.com/questions/47161/is-roses-heaven-her-dead-husbands-hell.

If the final scene of Titanic is Rose's death and entering the afterlife to reunite with Jack then her poor husband really got a raw deal in my opinion. It's very obvious to me that she married the poor bastard for comfort and not love. He may have loved her but she never loved him. At least that's what my early 2016 opinion was.

I've lately been mulling this point's wider implications about when it comes to a first love. They say a first love is a thing that's hard to forget. And boy it seems like it would be something rather complicated, as many things in life invariably are...

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Re: Did She Love Him [Titanic]

Post by Enail on Thu Dec 21, 2017 3:07 pm

I haven't actually seen the movie, so this will be a slightly more uninformed opinion than my usual Wink. But I do think the fact that her love for Jack seems to, er, go on very intensely doesn't inherently mean that she didn't love her husband as much or better, if one love can be said to be 'better' than another.

It's the Romeo and Juliet thing, a romance tragically cut short through death is more dramatically romantic than a decades-long relationship. Jack died, saving her life no less, after (I assume) a few weeks together, they were barely steps into the honeymoon period, let alone out of it. They never had time to get annoyed at the way the other one chews, or to have to figure out how hot they want to keep their house or how to compromise on different sexual preferences, or to clean up vomit when the other has the flu (okay, they might have had time for that, being on a ship at sea Wink, but that's still different from when they're also dealing with their day-to-day lives and he's also rushing off to a long day at work or she's staying up late darning socks while worrying about how to make the grocery money stretch for a few more days). It's all heroic romance, there's none of the abrasions and hurts and irritations of building a life together (not to mention of breaking up if they found they weren't compatible over time, a pretty likely outcome for any weeks-long romance), so it makes a nice, clear picture in the memory - but there's also none of the thousands of little thoughts and efforts and kindnesses and moments of affection put forth through all the stresses and burdens of decades of daily life, that goes into a longer relationship. Whatever she had with Calvert would have been such a different thing to what she had with Jack, that I don't really think you can compare them that easily.

That said, I think you're right that it's pretty telling that the afterlife vision, involves her reuniting with Jack and not her husband. By today's standards, I'd probably say she wasn't over Jack enough to be in a serious relationship with anyone else, or at least not without disclosing how prominent a role Jack still played in her feelings and seeing if Calvert was okay with that.  But OTOH, it doesn't sound like Calvert is ever on screen, or that the audience knows anything about his feelings for her or how they defined their relationship to each other; we have no particular reason to think that Calvert was yearning for a firey, epic romance of first loves with Rose. In that time period, marriage was more of a requirement than now, and women in particular didn't have as much option to not get married, so I don't think it's quite right to assume either of them expected their relationship should be the one true romance in their hearts, or to judge them for secret inner feelings that don't fit that model.
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Re: Did She Love Him [Titanic]

Post by LoneRider on Thu Dec 21, 2017 7:30 pm


Enail wrote:
That said, I think you're right that it's pretty telling that the afterlife vision, involves her reuniting with Jack and not her husband.

Part of me is inclined to call that a betrayal. I mean Calvert gave Rose 50-60 years of his life, and if he did faithfully love her, then she just screwed him over by that afterlife vision right there in my eyes.

My journal entry on that subject says as much, but with much harsher language than I'd prefer to use here...even if it is the internet. Yesterday's entry on this subject, which occured after I did some more reflecting on the subject (incidentally after a re-read of Dr. Nerdlove's emotional intelligence article) was a bit more nuanced.

In the more nuanced one, from personal experience I know a first love is hard to forget. And honestly I feel one loses something if a first love is entirely forgotten. Having a soft spot for the first romantic love, per a talk with a trusted individual, is just part of the human condition. So aware of that, and some of my own reflection the more nuanced view isn't as likely to judge Rose so harshly but I still think it's rather fucked up with that afterlife vision.

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