Jump to content
Chinese-forums.com
Learn Chinese in China

skylee

"Humour me" and other bad subtitle translation

Recommended Posts

skylee

I like 超級無敵. :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Site Sponsors:
Pleco for iPhone / Android iPhone & Android Chinese dictionary: camera & hand- writing input, flashcards, audio.
Study Chinese in Kunming 1-1 classes, qualified teachers and unique teaching methods in the Spring City.
Learn Chinese Characters Learn 2289 Chinese Characters in 90 Days with a Unique Flash Card System.
Hacking Chinese Tips and strategies for how to learn Chinese more efficiently
Popup Chinese Translator Understand Chinese inside any Windows application, website or PDF.
Chinese Grammar Wiki All Chinese grammar, organised by level, all in one place.

skylee

Here is a good translation of humour me. This is from House of Cards S1E13. But this is not just any fan sub. It is 人人影視傾情奉獻. :P

post-32-0-00148900-1378496420_thumb.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
muyongshi

Was watching Furious 6 and "they" decided to translate "humour me" as 别嘲笑我了.

I think we should start a database for all the wrong translations of a single phrase and see how many we come out with. Or not...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
skylee

I am watching Downton Abbey Season 4 Episode 2 on Youku, which seems to have the exclusive right to release it in China.  Take a look at the screenshot attached. I think the first part of the translation (on "The Royal Family convulses the nation by ceasing to be German") is quite wrong. I suppose that is because the translator did not know about the change of the name of the royal house in Britain?

 

(Context - Post WWI, a guy wanted to divorce his mentally-ill wife so that he could remarry. Germany allowed it so he was trying to become German.)

post-32-0-23793400-1381690216_thumb.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Lu

 

I suppose that is because the translator did not know about the change of the name of the royal house in Britain?

 

I think lack of background knowledge is often the cause of bad translations (after of course the translator simply not understanding the language good enough).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
muyongshi

And second would be not so great 听力. I love it when different sites have both the English and Chinese and even the English turns out wrong. Several times I've even noticed a persons name being shown 2 or 3 different ways throughout the show.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
OneEye

I bought some Disney movies from China once. They turned out to be pirated (imagine that), but they were absolutely hysterical. The English subtitles were a translation of the Chinese translation of the original English, rather than just the original English. It was largely gibberish, but I distinctly remember a line in Lady and the Tramp where Lady said, "Holy shit, it's already morning." I'm sure Walt Disney was rolling in his grave.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
skylee

Wrong translation (not sure if it is intentional). It is funny.  From the film "No strings attached".

post-32-0-35371700-1383060893_thumb.jpg

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
skylee

The film is being shown on TVB Pearl tonight so I took this picture. This is a much better translation.

post-32-0-19897700-1383313197_thumb.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Lu

'Can I shake your hand', hilarious. The other translation is obviously better in that it gets the meaning right, but to me the English seems a lot more direct and rude than the Chinese.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
skylee

I am watching the latest episode of ABC's Scandal (season 3 episode 5).

 

The story - a congresswoman is running to become a candidate of the presidential election. The secret that people try to use to attack her is that she gave birth to a child when she was a teenager.  The child has been raised up as her kid sister.  Her fixer advises her to "make her personal life fair game" and she disagrees as it is not fair to tell the truth that will ruin her sister/daughter, who does not know the truth.

 

Now look at the screenshots.  The translation of "coming after me" is wrong.

 

I suppose this is not fan-sub, which makes me wonder what qualifications are required for such translation jobs.

 

PS - The translation of "I signed up for that" is also not good.

post-32-0-19102400-1383325471_thumb.png

post-32-0-47658900-1383325486_thumb.png

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Lu

 

I suppose this is not fan-sub, which makes me wonder what qualifications are required for such translation jobs.

As long as the translator/subtitler doesn't make any mistake where the person hiring the translator knows better, the translator can get hired. I think that's about the extent of it. The organisation I used to work for had some movies subtitled (I think I mentioned that before in this thread) and the person responsible for it didn't see any problem with the result, because her English wasn't better than that of the translators and neither party understood Dutch (the actual language of the movies). I complained, but those translators fit the budget so that was it.

 

Even on Dutch tv I sometimes see bad subtitles. Now I have pretty decent English if I may say so myself, but I would expect someone who 靠英語吃飯 knows as least as much as I do.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
muyongshi

This is not so much a bad translation as simply one that got brain moving.

The English was "religiously" and it was translated as 十分. I think it really highlights the cultural implications in languages when seeing words like this.

Does anyone know if Chinese has a more exact one word adverb to convey this meaning? My own knowledge says no, but what I find interesting is the cultural implication seeing that China has had a history of religious devoutness but it never resulted in the same usage we have in English.

Anyway, all that to say subtitles can be very revealing about culture in addition to the more comical mistakes that can occur.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
skylee

Re #34, context?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
skylee

This is from the latest episode of the Good Wife (S5E9).  Sing somebody's praises ≠ 唱讚美詩. This is pretty bad. It is such a common expression.

post-32-0-61863800-1385392457_thumb.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
skylee

This is from Scandal Season 3 Episode 11. The Vice President has just announced that she will be running for the Presidential election as an independent. The woman in the picture is the First Lady. And she is telling the Chief of Staff that the Vice President is accelerating. :P

post-32-0-51209800-1394125696_thumb.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
skylee

Now this is from a korean period drama "Moon Embracing the Sun".

This has nothing to do with bad translation (I don't know any korean). Actually I find the subtitles pretty amazing, very nice. There is just this typo that is a bit annoying. And unless you pay attention it is not easy to notice the typo.

鼓掌 is wrong here. When you see 玩弄於, you know it can't be followed by 鼓掌. :D

post-32-0-30354800-1396283483_thumb.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
ouyangjun

I watched a "street vendor" version of 《天注定》 tonight.  The beginning of the movie took place in Shanxi and they were speaking a bit of dialect 方言 and when they spoke Mandarin there was a big accent, I was having trouble keeping up with the characters, so I switched the English.... Didn't help much.  The first sentence that popped up after switching the English was...

 

"你说啊”

 

"You speak ah"

 

I knew the English translation was in trouble when they started translating things like 啊 directly into English...  Gave me a smile.

 

(note, the official version probably has real good English translations, mine was a Suzhou street special)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
skylee

I have just watched the Hunger Games movie Mockingjay Part 1 at a cinema in HK. There are subtitles in traditional Chinese here. In the early part of the film, when Katniss is led to meet the leader of the rebels for the first time, the soldier explains that the rebels have built the underground quarters and bunkers. He says "War never stopped for us." And the Chinese subtitle goes, "戰爭從未阻撓我們". I am not sure why "for" is missing in the translation.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and select your username and password later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Click here to reply. Select text to quote.

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...