More Than a Century After She Went Down, the 'Titanic' Still Mesmerizes and Moves Us

The mightiest passenger ship of her day went down one hundred and four years ago this month, but its almost Greek-myth fate and that of most of its passengers haunts us to this day. Now a game developer has produced a real-time animation of the doomed ship’s maiden voyage as a warm-up for a video game. It runs two hours and forty minutes, which may be too long for most to watch all the way through, but it’s hypnotic and ineffably sad:

The animation is mostly silent, although as the great ship finally succumbs to gravity, the weight of water, and the cold embrace of the north Atlantic, the creaking of metal and muffled screams of the passengers add a potent counterpoint to the tragedy. Might I suggest that you have a look at the video above while listening to the British minimalist composer Gavin Bryars’ spooky 1975 (revised in 1990) masterpiece, The Sinking of the Titanic.

Would any of us have had the courage to meet the end so stoically? But in an age of faith, one suspects that far more people did back then than would today. Or do even atheists pray when all is lost?