February 06, 2018

The Heart of the Ocean

The Heart of the Ocean (also known as Le Cœur de la Mer) is the name of a fictitious blue diamond featured prominently in the 1997 film Titanic. See the ORIGINS section of this article for more details about the inspiration for the design of this movie prop.


In the film, treasure hunter Brock Lovett (Bill Paxton) searches for a necklace, which he believes to be within the wreck of the RMS Titanic. His hunch seems to be confirmed when his team salvages a drawing, dated the day the Titanic sank, in which a nude woman is portrayed wearing only the necklace. The necklace was fashioned from a large blue diamond worn by Louis XVI. (Ironically, this very diamond happens to be the Hope Diamond, which Lovett said is worth less than the Heart.) Shortly after his execution in 1793, the diamond disappeared and was recut into a heart-like shape, known as "The Heart of the Ocean". The story of the heart of the ocean is very like the story of the Hope Diamond, except that the Hope Diamond was worn by Louis XIV in a royal necklace rather than a crown.

The woman in the picture, Rose DeWitt Bukater (now named Rose Calvert) (played by Gloria Stuart and Kate Winslet) contacts Lovett and is flown out to his recovery ship where she relates the story of her trip. She reveals that, although now known as Rose (Dawson) Calvert, she is in fact Rose Dewitt Bukater, a teenage girl believed to have perished in the sinking. Rose Dewitt Bukater's bullying fiancé Caledon Hockley (Billy Zane) had bought the "Le Cœur de la Mer" necklace as a symbol of his love for her. Rose wore the necklace when Jack Dawson (Leonardo DiCaprio) drew her nude, the very drawing that was later salvaged. When Rose and Jack return to her room after running around the ship fleeing Spicer Lovejoy, Cal's valet, he meets them outside the door and chastises them, taking hold of Jack's arm and stealthily dropping the necklace into Jack's coat undetected. As soon as they enter the room, they are confronted by Cal, who claims Jack has stolen the necklace. In a short search of Jack, the diamond is found in the coat he is wearing. Jack's pleas of innocence are thrown in doubt when it is discovered that he has "borrowed" the coat he is wearing to sneak into first class, and he is branded a thief.

Before the Titanic sinks, Cal puts his outer coat on Rose, faking a show of care for her, and failing to realize that the necklace was in its pocket. When the Titanic sinks, Rose is still wearing the coat. After being rescued from the water and traveling to New York City, Rose discovers the necklace in the coat.
At the end of the film, Rose walks alone to the stern of the salvage ship and opens her hands to reveal the necklace, which she has kept all of her life. She lets the necklace fall from her hand and into the water.

Many of the deleted scenes from the film displayed Lovett's obsessive curiosity as to the whereabouts of the diamond during the course of Rose's story. In the alternate ending, Lovett and Lizzy, Rose's granddaughter, notice her walking along the deck, toward the stern of the ship. They notice her stepping on to the railing and quickly run to confront her. She shows them the diamond, dangling it over the rail threatening to drop it in order to keep them back. When questioned about having the necklace all this time, Rose admits that there were many times she thought of selling it, but refrained from doing so in order to live on her own without Cal's money. She allows Lovett to hold it in the palm of his hand, something he wanted to do since he first began the search for the gem, before flinging it overboard.

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