I haven't seen Night to Remember to compare but I understand it to be a quite better film than Titanic 53.
For the 53 version I think its just the power of the situation, that's what compels us. People did stay behind, people were noble even if not all of them were, and at some point that ship hauled ass straight into the ocean. So seeing people deal with that still got to me.
Funny that the 53 version tried a lot of the similar things that JC did, building a core story that will then have more power in the context of the sinking (father and son relationship) and had that snob girl meets common man (from Purdue baby
But your comments could match what I saw so I don't know that your in for some new insight with the film. I prefer the 97 version by far and expect that NtRem will be more impressive as well.
How big an upset was M$Baby? I was trying to think of films that had the most noms AND most wins, yet lost Best Pix. Did that happen to FOTR? Not quite. It TIED for most wins, though they were also "techs" while ABM had Pix, Dir, S Actress, Script.
However, ABM won the GG over FOTR for drama, whereas Aviator beat M$Baby here.
There is a reason my formula had Aviator so strong. Looking at the results it starts to look a bit more like Annie Hall or something. AH was weaker in its year, but M$Baby was flying moderately low this year.
I'm not knocking the film, I love that Annie Hall won for example. Just stepping back to take a look at what has just happened, what sort of win it was. I know fans here might feel like "no shit it won" but come on, this was an impressive "come back" late in the evening. Aviator had been strong, took off early in the night with the "win it all" sort of tailcoat wins and then M$Baby threw the punchers chance knockout blow.
Reflecting on it I think its a pretty dramatic moment.