Tuesday, April 11, 2017

A Night to Remember (1958)

IMDb plot summary: An account of the ill-fated maiden voyage of RMS Titanic in 1912.
Directed by Roy Ward Baker. Starring Kenneth More, Ronald Allen, Robert Ayres, and Honor Blackman.

In my last movie challenge someone gave me Titanic, which I enjoyed pretty well. This time around, I got another film portrayal of the Titanic disaster, though I didn't enjoy this one quite as much, either from a spectacle standpoint (though obviously I wasn't really expecting that) or from an emotional. The film spreads itself so thin among so many characters that you don't ever actually get attached to any of them, so every scene is like watching it played out with strangers. That can sometimes be powerful, but it also means there isn't a lot of opportunity for personal investment in the story, at least early on. The final scenes bring that a bit closer to home not because we've gotten to know the characters but because the circumstances they're in are so extreme it's easy to sympathize with any of them even if we don't know who they are. Overall the movie plays more like an educational film than a narrative, so it's all a little drier, a little more distanced, and a little bit more focused on the historical implications of the tragedy (an ending title card even informs us how regulations adapted in response to the ship sinking). A good watch but nothing spectacular.

3 stars.

How it entered my Flickchart:
A Night to Remember > Outbreak
A Night to Remember < Gone in 60 Seconds
A Night to Remember < The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (2013)
A Night to Remember > The Wedding Singer
A Night to Remember < Fish Story
A Night to Remember < Nine Lives
A Night to Remember > Bee Movie
A Night to Remember > The Last Unicorn
A Night to Remember > The Revenant
A Night to Remember < Seeking a Friend for the End of the World

Final spot: #1105 out of 2607.

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