Titanic: The Legend Goes On — also known as Titanic: The Animated Movie or Titanic: The Animated Musical — is a 2000 animated film written and directed by Italian director Camillo Teti.
The film follows the adventures of a Cinderella Captain Ersatz named Angelica, who boards the Titanic with her wicked stepmother and her stepsisters. In a role-reversal of the romance from the better-known James Cameron film, the poor girl falls in love with a rich young man (whose nanny happens to be Angelica's long-lost real mother).
Accompanying them on the voyage are a family of immigrant mice, a Cruella de Vil lookalike and her Cockney henchmen, a detective who dresses like Sherlock Holmes, a trio of racially-insensitive Mexican mice, and an anachronistic rapping dog. You will not be able to follow what they're doing or why they're doing it.
The ship eventually hits an iceberg and sinks, of course — but in this Lighter and Softer fairy tale treatment of the Titanic story, nearly all of the characters we're introduced to in this film survive the disaster and live Happily Ever After.
There are two versions of the film: the original cut, and a more well-known Re-Cut which features completely different songs and a more coherent plot than the original cut. The latter version was bundled free with some cheap DVD player bundles in the early days of DVD technology.
Not to be confused with the other Titanic musical, which is about the actual people who were on the ship.
Nor should it be confused with another Italian film called The Legend of the Titanic, which is an entirely different animated Titanic movie that features more talking mice, a "save the whales" plot, and a giant octopus which tries to save the ship, and nobody dies because the ship had enough lifeboats in this crazy timeline.
Titanic: The Legend Goes On proves examples of the following tropes:
- Actor Allusion: Edmund Purtnom (credited as Edmond Purdom), who played Jeremey McFlannel, had an uncredited role in Titanic (1953).
- Advertised Extra: Most of the characters listed on the DVD are minor animals who only appear in the background of a few shots.
- All There in the Script: The names of a lot of the characters are only given on the back of the DVD.
- Aluminium Christmas Trees: The use of the word "legend" in the title, combined with the ridiculous Lighter and Softer treatment of a tragedy, has led to speculation that the producers may have thought that the Titanic story is fiction. This might be more of a "Blind Idiot" Translation problem, though, since the Italian word leggenda can mean "legend" in the sense of "tale passed down from previous generations." Not that it excuses the rapping dog and the mice wearing sombreros, of course.
- Anachronism Stew: Fritz the dog isn't only rapping in 1912, he also at one point carries a vintage wireless telegraph machine around like a boombox and wears a basketball jersey with a "T" (for Titanic) on it.
- Animation Bump: The scene in which the nanny gives Angelica her dress is probably the only in the movie where the animation is actually decent.
- Award-Bait Song: Like the movie it's ripping off, it attempts to have a soulful love ballad, even played over the requisite ballroom scene.
- Broken Record: In uncut version, some lines indeed sound like a broken record. Some sentences seem to somehow start mid-word and out of nowhere.
Molly: I'm always a perfect lady with nothing to be ashamed of, so leave me alone.
- "You can't go through this way. Don't force me to resort to violence! You can't go through this way. Don't force me to resort to violence! Don't force me to resort to violence. Can't go through this way."
(several lines later)
Molly: Oh thank you! Always a perfect lady with nothing to be ashamed of!
- "The locket that her long lost mother gave her." Said in two different scenes using the exact same audio footage.
- "WE'RE ON A SHIP IN THE MIDDLE OF THE OCEAN!"
- "Out of the picture, She's/you're about to present me with some heirs."
- "You can't come- You can't come, you have nothing to wear- nothing to wear, and no one's going- and no one's going to lend you anything."
- Captain Ersatz: Most of the cast are imitations of characters from well-known animated films.
- Angelica, her stepmother, and her stepsisters are obvious Cinderella knockoffs and Angelica herself has been compared to Don Bluth's Anastasia.
- The mouse family is clearly derivative of An American Tail.
- The two dalmatians look a lot like Pongo and Perdita from Disney's 101 Dalmatians, and of course there's a Cruella de Vil lookalike with henchmen who resemble Jasper and Horace.
- The Mexican mice look like refugees from a Speedy Gonzalez cartoon.
- A magpie is quite obviously based on Jeremy from The Secret of NIMH.
- And there's a bumbling detective who looks like Sherlock Holmes.
- There's even a ripoff of Disney's version of Gaston called... Gaston.
- Somewhat less obvious:
- The Lady knock-off from Lady and the Tramp (except that the "Lady" is actually male with a Sam Elliot-like voice).
- Granny from Sylvester and Tweety (called "Victoria").
- The Girl, which Victoria is travelling with, looks suspiciously like a young version of Belle, from Beauty and the Beast?
- The orange cat Geoffrey who looks quite a bit like Azrael of The Smurfs.
- Fritz the rapping terrier (who looks very much like Jock, the terrier in Lady and the Tramp).
- The geese from The Aristocats.
- A bit more obscure; William looks quite a bit like Prince Charming of Cinderella (and his picture on the DVD looks eerily like Leonardo Dicaprio's character in the James Cameron Titanic).
- Winnie the gold digger's overall appearance seems to have been copied off Molly Brown as she appears in James Cameron's Titanic.
- And to top it all off, they couldn't resist admitting in script that the chihuahua accompanying the cat was based off of Batty from FernGully: The Last Rainforest. ("Stupid dog! What am I saying? You look more like a bat!")
- Captain Obvious: In the uncut version, when the ship is sinking: "We're on a ship in the middle of the ocean." More of laziness from the film makers. That same line was used earlier, when the Nanny points out to William that the girl he is looking for can't just disappear as "We're on a ship in the middle of the ocean!" Could be an attempt at an Ironic Echo, if it weren't such a terrible line.
- Catch-Phrase: "Sam to my friends, a threat to my enemies."
- Circling Birdies: When Meanstreak's dog gets hit by a meat and flew against the wall, he gets some meat spinning on top of its head.
- Conspicuous CG: The long-distance shots of the ship during the voyage are clearly computer generated, clashing with the normal 2-D animation.
- Crying Critters: When they escape in rowboats, the animals cry the same as the humans.
- Department of Redundancy Department:
- Repeated dialogue in uncut version.
- Also this gem from the uncut version: "Dressed in mourning, Gertrude Pickering is all broken up, though her tears are not tears of joy."
- Deranged Animation: The rapping dog scene. Everybody gains a weird plastic wrap texture, and become almost gelatinous.
- Everybody Lives:
- Despite being a movie about an event where over 1500 people died... the only character who is actually stated to have not made it off the boat is Molly the singer, and all because she was too busy singing. Everyone else lives happily ever after, with no life-altering psychological damage at all. Even the dog made it!
- It's also implied that the gold digger Winnie and Jeremy McFlannel die as well. They are last seen on the boat, willing to stay with each other to the end, and aren't mentioned in the epilogue.
- Funnily enough, the part about the singer dying on Titanic due to being busy singing may in fact be some sort of reference to how the orchestra decided to stay behind on the ship and play one last tune of "Nearer My God To Thee". No word on whether attractive female singers were part of the group, though. They weren't.
- Four Lines, All Waiting: We've got the thieves, the love story, the detective, the mice, the bankrupt banker and the search for the mother. Oh, and the boat thing. Dubiously justified in that the movie makers seemed to want to concentrate more on the lives of the passengers, taking it for granted that the viewers would already know about the iceberg thing.
- Gorgeous Period Dress: Probably the one part of the movie that comes close to accurate, aside from the setting. All the fancy hats, expensive dresses, and fur wraps, were at least mostly done right. Except for Molly's gown, a strapless, backless number that looks more suitable for a modern cruise ship than anything from a century ago. There's also the rapping dog, who wears a jersey (with the letter T on it, even) and a baseball cap.
- Gratuitous Rap: The infamous Rapping Dog, rapping about party time, with no context or justification for doing so.
- Gratuitous Spanish: The song "Mucho Gusto". Most of it is Painfully Rhymed El Spanish "-o", and the little bit of actual Spanish is totally mangled. Fiesta is strictly the noun form of "party" (festejaremos is "we will party") and mucho gusto (literally "very pleased") is the Spanish equivalent of "pleased to meet you" ("much gusto" would be translated as mucho entusiasmo).
- Heroes Want Redheads: After roughly five seconds upon first meeting Angelica, William falls madly in love with her. It takes roughly 15-20 before he starts smooching her hand.
- Heroic Dolphin: The dolphins who help save people from the sinking ship.
- Historical Villain Upgrade:
- The first officer is portrayed as a snide Jerk Ass who, among other things, shoves another crew member out of the way to get a spot on the lifeboats. The real first officer went down with the ship after helping evacuate about three quarters of the survivors, and is generally regarded as a hero.
- The first officer is vaguely a Jerk with a Heart of Gold (or at least the movie makers seemed to intend for that) in an earlier scene, when Molly thinks that Angelica stole her locket (in reality, Gaston found it and gave it to Molly, without knowing who the real owner was) and the officer implies to her that the necklace was Angelica's to begin with. After that though...
- I Was Quite a Looker: Victoria claims to be this, explaining why she'd have a party dress in Angelica's size. We never actually see evidence of this, though. And of course this brings up some major Fridge Logic: why would Victoria, who looks to be quite elderly, have a dress from her youth (presumably the 1880s) that's very much in keeping with 1912 styles?
- Kick the Dog: One of the wicked stepsisters intentionally drops a cup and the stepmother orders the young heroine to clean it up, calling her "clumsy" in the process.
- Large Ham: The voice actress who does the voice of Meanstreak when she goes "IT'S A FAAAAKE!"
- Loads and Loads of Characters: The film simply has far too many characters to work with. Some characters such as the Cruella de Vil-lookalike and the Stepmother are virtually interchangeable and there are at least 5 dogs in the cast (historically, only 3 dogs actually survived the actual sinking, none of them being the breeds in the film). This along with an incoherent plotline leads to a shipwreck of a movie.
- Love at First Sight: One of the most extreme examples, as William falls head-over-heels for Angelica within seconds.
- Makes Just as Much Sense in Context: It's hard to overstate just how completely out of nowhere "Party Time" is. It's about ten minutes into a film that has given zero indication of being a musical in the first place. And the song is not set up at all. Fritz just responds to Maxie thanking him for saving his life by launching into a song. The fact that it's in a musical style that wouldn't be invented for another six decades just adds even more layers of ridiculous.
- Male Gaze: The film pays a lot of attention to Angelica and Molly's chests.
- Misplaced Wildlife: Dolphins appear in this movie (which takes in the north Atlantic). While certain species of dolphins, including the bottlenose, have a range that spans virtually the entire Atlantic, there are no reports of dolphins arriving after the sinking.
- The Mockbuster: Of James Cameron's Titanic.
- Names to Run Away from Really Fast: "Meanstreak".
- No Fourth Wall
- "Wait a minute, wait a minute, where are you going? The movie isn't over yet!"
- The rapping dog's "Don't sweat it! Forget it! Enjoy the show!"
- Not Even Bothering with the Accent: You wouldn't know William was Scottish unless you read the back of the box.
- The uncut version has more of it, such as Gaston going through a table at one point. Although in both versions, you can see a man in one background growing larger, and Meanstreak receiving a wallet with an extra hand for a second.
- When the third class passengers break through the Gates, two of them aren't animated properly and end up marching in place.
- On the DVD cover, William is sporting a look and hairstyle that looks very much like Leonardo Dicaprio, while in the actual film he doesn't.
- Parental Abandonment: At the start of the film Angelica is in the care of her stepmother, the only explanation given about her biological parents is that they left her behind as a small child and then seemingly disappeared. Conveniently Angelica's mother just happens to be on the Titanic, the caretaker to the male love interest (who by the way has no parents to speak of either), and ends up the same lifeboat as her long lost daughter. When the pair reunite all that is revealed is Angelica's parents were forced to give her up for ungiven reasons and in the uncut version that her parents were allowed to return for Angelica at any time but when they did so the girl's caretaker (the stepmother) had taken off leaving only a bank account for money that they were likely sending to her behind.
- The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything: Sam Bradbury has to be the worst undercover detective ever to live. The fact that he managed to get an award for solving a crime he did bugger-all to solve at the end of the movie is baffling. There's even an instance where a woman's valuables have disappeared (or more likely stolen) and he pops up saying "Not to worry, I saw everything." There's also the fact that he clearly sees the two thieves reaching into the gold digger's purse at one point and seems to freak out for no good reason when they start to put their hand in the dog's mouth instead. Wouldn't that have been reason enough to catch them? On the other hand, this might also apply to the Captain, who was told he had a ring of notorious thieves on his boat and didn't do a thing to help catch them. No warnings to the passengers, no extra security, no worrying, nothing.
- Protagonist-Centered Morality: It's considered a happy ending because all the main characters survived.
- Recycled In Space: James Cameron's Titanic, as a Disneyesque cartoon with the main characters' genders reversed. And a rapping dog.
- Series Continuity Error: The movie can't agree whether Hortense and Bernice are Gertrude's daughters or nieces.
- Sequel Hook: At the end, the kid mouse telling how everyone lived happily ever after says "See you soon!", even though there was no sequel made.
- Sherlock Homage: There is a character clearly based on Sherlock Holmes. A detective who wears a deerstalker and smokes a pipe.
- Skewed Priorities: While Everybody Lives, the rescue boats had no problem filling some of the empty seats with animals.
- Spaghetti Kiss: Sort of. We see the Dalmatians sharing link sausage in the "Mucho Gusto" scene. We don't actually see them kiss, but it's pretty obvious it was meant to invoke this trope. There's a good chance that they didn't know how to animate dogs kissing, so they just gave up.
- Stock Audio Clip: The original English dub, by virtue of simply being a dub, didn't leave out anything from the native Italian version...but this leads to an utterly bizarre issue where they have to resort to repeating dialogue whenever the scene runs too long and the new dialogue runs too short to compensate. A particularly bad case is when a guard at one point says "You can't go through this way! Don't force me to resort to violence!" three times in the span of less than a minute.
- Stock Footage: The edited version is especially guilty for this.
- A large part of the footage in that version is shown at least twice. In one scene, there's water breaking through the hull shown 4 times straight.
- Most of the musical sequences use the same short shots of characters repeatedly.
- The North American edit's notoriously long closing credits recycles scenes from throughout the movie.
- That Reminds Me of a Song: The aforementioned rapping dog song "Party Time" and the Mexican mice's "Mucho Gusto."
- Unusually Uninteresting Sight: Anthropomorphic animals, to passengers.
- Uptown Girl: Gender-flipped. Angelica, being a poor girl, felt herself unfit to be in a relationship with wealthy William. She even told him she didn't belong into his world and couldn't compete with the young ladies that surrounded him.
- Viewers Are Goldfish: The movie tends to repeat things that happened less than three minutes ago.
- Viewers Are Morons: During Fritz the dog's rap, there's a sign on the wall in a couple shots that helpfully reminds us that genre of the song we're listening to is "RAP MUSIC".
- Vocal Dissonance: You'd expect the Dopey-esque bellhop to have a silly-sounding voice, but no. He speaks with a perfectly normal-sounding one instead.
- What the Hell Is That Accent?: The littlest mouse. Supposedly meant to be Swedish, but it sounds Irish and even Jamaican (!) at times.
- "Where Are They Now?" Epilogue: Lampshaded by the youngest of the mouse family at the very end of the film.
- Wicked Stepmother: Gertrude. Although she's technically Angelica's adopted mother, she plays the role of a stepmother, and treats her as a servant.
- World of Buxom: The film pays a lot of attention to Angelica and Molly's chests, and Gertrude, Hortense, and Bernice are also very well-endowed, though that may be Fan Disservice.
- You Are Worth Hell: In the full uncut version, there's a scene as the ship is sinking where the old man and the fat lady reveal that they were both lying to one another; they each have nothing of value. The woman then embraces the man saying how at least she has him. It's the closest thing to an actual emotional scene in the movie. And we never see them again.