The web is full of funny and sometimes baffling translations! The following collection of less than perfect translations of Hollywood film titles we’ve found only goes to prove that quality translation is always a great investment!
Army of Darkness became the slightly less menacing Captain Supermarket when translated for Japanese viewers.
US feel good movie Dodgeball was translated to Full of the Nuts for the German Audience.
Knocked Up became only Slightly Pregnant when transliterated for the audience in Peru.
Woody Allen classic Annie Hall was given a more literal twist with the title Urban Neurotic for the German audience.
Thelma and Louise was translated into An Unexpected End for the movie goers of Mexico.
Die Hard With A Vengeance became Die Hard: Mega Hard for the Audience in Denmark.
Italian translators clearly struggled with Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, deciding instead on a translation which stated If you leave me I delete you.
Comedy Romp Naked Gun was transliterated for moviegoers in Israel into The Gun Died Laughing.
Boogie Nights was subject to a literal translation in China with the title His Great Device Makes Him Famous.
Grease became the less appealing Vaseline when translated for the Argentine audience – we have to wonder what they expected to see.
Last but not least – the hard to enjoy Lost in Translation became Meeting and Failures in Meetings when translated into Portuguese. We still found it hard to see the comedy.
Of course, translations of film titles, like advertising straplines require something more than straight translation, rather they need transliteration, or copywriting skill in the target language in order to convey accurately the underlying meaning in a few short words, while still appealing to the target audience in order to make them want to buy the product or see the film.
Good transliteration skills are the hallmark of an excellent translator.