A Sea’s Worth of Schlock

Titanic 2, with Shane Van Dyke, Brook Burns and Bruce Davison. Written and directed by Shane Van Dyke. Not-rated, though some mild scenes of injured people.

Titanic 2 PosterFyddeye’s mission to survey all things happening today related to maritime history means we have to examine all media remotely inspired by historical events, even if it’s just the name. That’s about the only connection between the epic 1912 disaster and the execrable direct-to-DVD motion picture Titanic 2, which posits the sailing of a SS Titanic 2.0, only this version is doomed before it leaves the dock.

Written, directed, and starring Shane Van Dyke, Titanic 2 opens with passengers boarding what every cruise liner maven will recognize as the Queen Mary at its Long Beach, Calif., berth. Perhaps we could forgive Van Dyke for failing to mask the nearby Russian submarine Scorpion from the shots, but we won’t, because the sub’s sail practically struts behind the actors. And the rust streaks on the Titanic Do-Over’s lifeboats immediately raise questions about this new craft’s seaworthiness.

The cast is led by Sandra Bullock look-alike Brooke Burns, who plays a government scientist warning of ship-sinking tsunamis caused by calving glaciers, and Bruce Davison, playing a Coast Guard captain trying to save Titanic 2 from its inevitable (and blessed) destruction. Burns and Davison give the 20-something cast a mild bit of heft, and Davison could’ve created a real character if Van Dyke had bothered to give him readable lines. As it is, Davison mumbles along as the helicopter he’s riding seems permanently out of fuel.

Titanic 2 is a product of The Asylum, the current master of the B movie, including the recently released 2010: Moby Dick, an updated version of the classic novel. (Review coming soon.) The Asylum’s budgets rarely top $500,000, and Titanic 2’s special effects show it; the computer animation of the liner resembles something that might have been rendered for a Wii game demo. Could someone please publish a game featuring this tub so I can wave a Wii wand and torpedo it with a shot from the Russian sub?

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