Their hearts went on. But would life have been different if Jack Dawson (Leonardo DiCaprio) had just gotten on the raft with Rose DeWitt (Kate Winslet) at the end of 1997’s “Titanic”?
Some folks with extra time on their handsInternet scholars over at Reddit have been doing the calculations, and while photographic experimental evidence appears to say yes, physics calculations say no way.
For those with fuzzy memories: At the end of “Titanic,” the ship goes down (spoiler!), Rose and Jack end up in the water, and she takes refuge on a pine plank from the ship’s Grand Staircase. Jack dangles from the side and they both pass out. When Rose wakes, Jack has frozen to death, half-in and half-out of the water. She is rescued and goes on to live a long, long time.
But couldn’t they both have fit on that big plank?
Fans say yes, and offer up photos of a taped-off section of floor representing the raft, which makes it clear that two grown adults could have fit in the physical space of the plank.
But as Reddit poster Khromatic noted (along with mathematical/physics calculations), they’d both have sunk. He/she wrote: “As force of gravity is larger than that of buoyancy, Leo and Kate will be swimming with the fishes.”
The fate of Rose and Jack has has been well-discussed on the web. Even if there wasn’t room on the plank, did an earlier decision by Rose doom Jack?
Askville over on Amazon.com dealt with this one a few years go, when submitter Layyla said her son had a theory about the film: “If Rose had stayed on the lifeboat she would have been safe and Jack would then have been able to worry only about himself. Jack is a survivor and he would have made it.”
Would he? Nobody knows, but those who read the post decided this explanation from 67alecto was best: “I still see him going down with the ship as opposed to getting on a lifeboat — he still would have let (women) and children go first. But, having gone down and not needing to worry about Rose, I think he’d have had a greater chance of surviving. He (put) her above himself, both literally and figuratively, as she floated out of the freezing water…. I’d give him 75% odds of surviving had he been just looking out for himself.”
But it would have made for a very different movie.