The aim of this blog is to serve as a meeting point to those who study or have studied English philology and, more broadly, to all those who love literature and language.

18 Dec 2008


A friend sends me the link to this article, Perdidos en la traducción, published in Pú In it, the writer deals with the issue of inaccurate translations in film dialogues and titles. The reasons and effects are different depending on the difficulty to find parallel expressions to mantain the humour of puns, the fact that more than one person in the translation of a script were employed, or even censure.

These are a couple of bizarre examples collected in this article:
- ‘The eternal sunshine on the spotless mind’ (quoting Alexander Pope) was translated as ‘¡Olvídate de mí!’
- "Are there good white basketball players?" became "¿El perro de San Roque tiene rabo?" in the Spanish version.

Cinema and language. Scene 8.
Original and Spanish versions of the scene mentioned at the beginning of the article (from the film Horse Feathers)

Where's the seal?

¡Aquí falta un testigo!

1 comment:

  1. Appropriate translations are always difficult, especially if the subject is a joke or a riddle. In certain cases the translation is simply not possible. For example, this riddle – “What is that smell the most in the kitchen?”- works both in English and Spanish, but this another one gets sense only when it is uttered in English (written it doesn´t work so well) – “How do you say “a fish” without ‘eyes’?”
    (The answer in the first case is “the nose” and in the second one is “a fsh”).