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Re^4: Humorous Module Ideas

by merlyn (Sage)
on Sep 14, 2005 at 14:49 UTC ( #491892=note: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

in reply to Re^3: Humorous Module Ideas
in thread Humorous Module Ideas


How can you take a movie that is essentially a series of puns and wisecracks about American Culture (using the term loosely) and parodies of prior movies, and have it make sense when translated and transferred outside the target audience?

I know this first-hand, because the puns and cultural references in my books don't translate well, say the translators. Although, for the first Camel, apparently the Japanese translator took out our puns and replaced them with equally funny puns that make sense only in Japanese!

-- Randal L. Schwartz, Perl hacker
Be sure to read my standard disclaimer if this is a reply.

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Re^5: Humorous Module Ideas
by QM (Parson) on Sep 14, 2005 at 14:54 UTC
    I think you're confusing the question of "Does it make sense in Italian?" with "Does it make money in Italian?", or even "Does it make money for me if I sell the rights to someone to dub it in Italian?"

    Quantum Mechanics: The dreams stuff is made of

Re^5: Humorous Module Ideas
by blazar (Canon) on Sep 14, 2005 at 15:31 UTC
    I can't answer to your question. At the age I saw it for the first time I couldn't speak English at all. I bet there are some puns and parodies I could not still make sense of. I can say that I found it to be enjoining enjoying*, and I could at least understand some of the parodies of prior movies, as I did for "Top Secret" (probably the best in the genre), and the much more recent "Hot Shots" series, etc.

    What astonished me most is that I enjoined enjoyed* href://|Life of Brian] too -- I saw it in Italian, haven't seen it in English yet. Without having seen it, I dare to say that the translators did an excellent job. It is still full of witty puns. Incidentally it is absolutely interesting to note that it could come out in Italy not earlier than some ten year later than in Britain. Don't know about other countries...

    *Updated as per Anonymous Monk's correction at Re^6: Humorous Module Ideas.
      Interesting. Your spell checker didn't catch "enjoin", because it's technically a valid word plus a valid prefix. To "enjoin" would be to connect two things, which doesn't make sense in the context of movies. The word you probabably want is "enjoy". Hope this helps: your English is otherwise quite understandable. :-)
        Your spell checker didn't catch "enjoin", because it's technically a valid word plus a valid prefix.
        Actually, it's a valid word in its own right.
        To "enjoin" would be to connect two things
        It might be, if it didn't already have the meaning of "prohibit" or "impose with authority". Courts do it.

        Caution: Contents may have been coded under pressure.
Re^5: Humorous Module Ideas
by dimar (Curate) on Sep 29, 2005 at 20:35 UTC

    It may be different for books, but I am convinced there is a growing industry of expertise in doing this very sort of thing for video. For a fascinating look into the mechanics behind this, go to the shelf in your house where you keep your DVD collection, pick any DVD that contains 'multiple language' tracks, and select any scene that deals with language, cultural 'in-jokes' or puns, and then watch that scene in a language other than English.

    Often you do not even have to understand the 'foreign language' to get insight into the very clever and revealing tricks used to 'localize' the content.

    This became apparent to me while I had a whim to watch a particular family guy episode on DVD in Spanish instead of English. There is a scene where one of the main characters is humiliated when all of the people in her school (including the janitor) reveal that she is the only one who doesn't have plans for spring break.

    The "English" version of the joke uses a punchline with the speaker switching from speaking English into speaking Spanish (to get the attention of the janitor). The "Spanish" version of the joke uses a punchline with the speaker switching from speaking Spanish into speaking (Gibberish that appears to have a 'Far East' accent to it?).

    One could write an entire book on the underlying cultural dynamics and implications. I wonder what it would be like if you substituted "Perl" for "English" and "Java" for "Spanish" ...


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