Did the Maker of True Lies Tell the Truth about History?
By Robert Brent Toplin In preparation for an appearance on the History Channel last November, I sat in the Walter Reade Theatre in New York, waiting to watch a screening of Titanic for the press and the television industry. Eager to meet some of the media personalities attending the event, I turned to the individual sitting next to me in the theater and introduced myself. The new acquaintance was a journalist for the national media, and when he learned that I was a historian, he quickly posed a question that he considered important for evaluating the motion picture. Did I think the film would communicate the latest scientific knowledge about the ship’s technological flaws? He wondered if the movie would reveal that the famous sinking resulted from popping rivets rather than a giant tear in the hull’s steel plates, an understanding scientists gained very recently from undersea exploration at the site of the Titanic’s grave on the floor of the Atlantic. I was struck by the irrelevance of
*Sadly, we had to bring back ads too. Hopefully more targeted.