“Titanic started a voyage through history when it sailed away. One century later, there is still no port at sight.” ― Marina Tavares Dias
The sinking of the Titanic has captivated people since 1912. The tragedy launched considerable inquires into its cause and triggered massive maritime changes, from increased lifeboats on ships to the creation of the International Ice Patrol.
Titanic’s demise is simple, but a debate has persisted as to who or what is to blame for the “unsinkable ship’s” disastrous voyage. Attempts to find answers have spawned hundreds of theories and launched a myriad of books and documentaries.
Speculation about the root-cause of the disaster range from poor construction to excessive speed, or from dereliction of duty to the lack of proper equipment for Titanic’s lookout personnel.
Although most of the theories seem viable, many of them don’t adequately explain all the events that occurred that night; furthermore, upon examination several theories collapse altogether.
Until now. Investigative Author Tim Maltin believes that atmospheric conditions created the perfect circumstances for a “killing zone,” which led to massive failures that reduced the chances for rescue and ultimately sank Titanic.
Maltin blames the collision on a rare phenomenon known as an ice water mirage. This singularity caused the lookout crew to overlook the iceberg until it was too late, and it contributed to the California’s captain failing to mount a rescue. Maltin’s theory also accounts for why Morse lamp signals were ignored or unseen.
The Smithsonian Channel aired Maltin’s findings in a 90-minute documentary titled “Titanic: Case Closed” (alternate title: “Titanic’s Final Mystery”). The episode employs powerful filming techniques to bring the event to life. It blends a potent soundtrack and dramatic computer-generated graphics (CGI), depicting the ship’s sinking, with present day scenes of Maltin conducting research and interviewing experts.
Professional actors provide dramatic portrayals of Titanic survivors through voiceovers, re-creations, and mock interviews based on historical statements and testimony. A particularly gripping performance was by John Guerrasio who portrays Colonel Archibald Gracie.
A Crow’s View believes that “Titanic’s Final Mystery” is a well-produced made-for-TV documentary worth watching. The film’s use of CGI, storytelling, and acting culminates in a compelling narrative, which does an outstanding job of presenting Maltin’s theory. Watching this program will either alter your view of why the Titanic sank, or it will provide additional details to what happened that cold night on April 14, 1912.
The documentary can be watched on the Smithsonian Channel’s website and through its app. It is also readily available on Netflix, iTunes, and Google Play.