Titanic Myth Busted: Jack and Rose Could Have Lived Happily Ever After

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Paramount Pictures

Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet shoot a scene in "Titanic" that requires them to balance on a floating piece of wood while get advice from director James Cameron.

We knew there was a way Jack and Rose could have lived happily ever after in the hit movie Titanic. All Rose needed to do was scoot over.

Jamie Hyneman and Adam Savage, the duo behind the Discovery Channel show Mythbusters, made that point on Sunday’s episode, braving the waters of San Francisco Bay with an exact replica of the board that allowed Rose to float to safety at the end of the movie.

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In the movie, Jack (Leonardo DiCaprio) lets Rose (Kate Winslet) float on the board above the water while he hangs on, eventually freezing to death in the ice-cold North Atlantic. With only one life preserver and the single fragment of wood, there just wasn’t the room and there wasn’t enough buoyancy to keep both doomed lovers afloat.

But it worked for a pair of grown men on a television show—sort of. The Hyneman and Savage showed how they could, after much finagling, manage to both climb aboard the piece of wood and stay afloat.

Sunny San Francisco is a bit different from nighttime in the North Atlantic, but even still, without their full-body exposure suits it would get mighty cold pretty quick out there. But the Mythbusters do manage to improvise a solution Rose and Jack didn’t think of: tying their single life preserver to the bottom of the board, giving it enough flotation for the two of them to keep about 80 percent of their bodies out of the water. Good enough to keep from freezing to death for more than an hour? They didn’t test that.

The experiment didn’t impress director James Cameron much, though. As he said in an interview on the show, “I think you guys are missing the point. The script says Jack died. He has to die.” Okay, so Rose is off the hook for this one.

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9 comments
Victor Madrigal
Victor Madrigal

Actually, the truth of the matter is that neither of them would have even made it off the Titanic with the amount of time they spent in 40 degree water before the ship sunk. They would have died of hypothermia on the way back up from the room below decks where Jack was handcuffed to the pipe.  I still loved the movie though. No need to pick it to pieces.

remyr
remyr

Funny, but this article was somewhat similar to what my 12 year old daughter said. She kept on saying, "why didn't they just stay together in the plank, Jack didn't have to just hang on and sink. The life jacket could have been used to make the wood float..they use those inner tubes of the tires for floating during that era right, why not use it the same way". After trying to tell her differently..got exhausted..and gave the Cameron answer...Kiddo, he needed to die so Rose can use his name. She stared at me, and I could sense she was thinking "yah, right, what a bleep, bleep answer and what a bleep, bleep movie"

boyraisin2
boyraisin2

Their boat just broke in half, and everyone they knew just died. Give 'em a break MythBusters.

Byst1nder
Byst1nder

Yes, they should have thought of that...

But frankly, how could they? jack and rose, who did not show the disposition on intelligence, would not be able to think about it - they don't have the intellectual capacity like what Jamie and Adam has (and their Mythbusters Team).

Furthermore, its cold and wet, not many people would be able to think clearly of how to improve their flotation device.

Trajan Saldana
Trajan Saldana

wow...WAY too much time on their hands...and they get paid for this crap

phearis
phearis

 They get paid for what they love to do, science.  Jealous Much?

LeeKo9
LeeKo9

I think the problem is Time reporting this as news. These sorts of things are the whole point of the show mythbusters, and are good as they encourage inquisitive minds in a public friendly manner. But Time, come on, surely theres something better going on in the world. 

Andrew Leane
Andrew Leane

Better than half the 'scientific discoveries' where a bunch of uni students fill out a questionnaire and the resulting stats are fiddled with to show some dumb fact. 

Adnan7631
Adnan7631

But this is the important stuff that science should be out and informing us on!!