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Added by karmacomatic on 27 Mar 2010 11:34
6670 Views 6 Comments
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Lost in Translation: German Titles

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People who added this item 3023 Average listal rating (1899 ratings) 8.6 IMDB Rating 8.9
Zwei glorreiche Halunken (Two glorious scoundrels)
Two? At least they put only two of them on the posters for that movie so it will suit the absurd title.
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People who added this item 2862 Average listal rating (1921 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 7.9
Hot Fuzz (2007)
Hot Fuzz - Zwei abgewichste Profis (impossible to translate)
abgewichst is a word which actually no one uses. It sort of means cool or something but to be honest it's related to the verb wichsen which means to jerk off. Hot Fuzz - two cool guys jerking off. Thank you very much.
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People who added this item 242 Average listal rating (166 ratings) 4.7 IMDB Rating 5.4
The Guru (2002)
Der Super-Guru
The Guru wasn't enough?
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People who added this item 83 Average listal rating (57 ratings) 4.3 IMDB Rating 3.8
Black Eagle (1988)
Red Eagle
That makes perfectly sense.
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People who added this item 1526 Average listal rating (931 ratings) 7.8 IMDB Rating 8
Zombies im Kaufhaus (Zombies in the Mall)
Summarizing the story in three words...
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People who added this item 333 Average listal rating (228 ratings) 5.7 IMDB Rating 5.9
Dragnet (1987)
Schlappe Bullen beißen nicht (Floppy cops don't bite)
Ridiculous.
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People who added this item 19 Average listal rating (11 ratings) 5.6 IMDB Rating 5
Ein Papst zum küssen (A Pope to Kiss)
Popes don't die around here, you know?
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People who added this item 1070 Average listal rating (648 ratings) 5.5 IMDB Rating 5.8
Rache ist sexy (Revenge is sexy)
No one's dying actually.
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People who added this item 223 Average listal rating (148 ratings) 6.7 IMDB Rating 6.7
9 to 5 (1980)
Warum eigentlich... bringen wir den Chef nicht um? (Why don't we rather kill the boss?)
Yes, why?
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People who added this item 737 Average listal rating (476 ratings) 6.6 IMDB Rating 7.2
Wir waren Helden (We were Heroes)
Not exactly the same thing, is it?
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People who added this item 1936 Average listal rating (1324 ratings) 7.2 IMDB Rating 7.8
Airplane (1980)
Die unglaubliche Reise in einem verrückten Flugzeug (The amazing journey in a crazy airplane)
Right, Airplane was hard to remember...
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People who added this item 2383 Average listal rating (1549 ratings) 7.3 IMDB Rating 7.8
Taken (2008)
96 Hours
A fake english title, nice
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People who added this item 3031 Average listal rating (1934 ratings) 5.9 IMDB Rating 6.6
Ich, beide & sie (I, both and she)
Both?
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Wenn Brüder aufeinander schießen müssen (When brothers have to shoot each other)
That just sounds stupid.
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People who added this item 56 Average listal rating (32 ratings) 4.6 IMDB Rating 5.4
Mo' Money (1992)
Meh' Geld
While it's common to shorten up more into mo in some sort of slang it isn't in German. Really it isn't. No one would do it ever. They did though. Epic fail
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People who added this item 261 Average listal rating (175 ratings) 6.3 IMDB Rating 6.6
Agent Null Null Nix zu wenig). That would've been to easy I guess.
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People who added this item 968 Average listal rating (582 ratings) 6.8 IMDB Rating 7.2
Ich glaub ich steh im Wald (I think I am in the woods)
To be fair this is a German idiom which means "Well, I'll be damned" or something like that so the whole woods thing is only absurd if you don't know the idiom. But still it is a stupid title which says nothing about that movie and makes it look like some ridiculous c movie.
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People who added this item 2856 Average listal rating (1820 ratings) 6.6 IMDB Rating 6.8
Eiskalte Engel (Ice cold Angels)
This is not as bad as any of those posted before but it is still not really good either.
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People who added this item 254 Average listal rating (140 ratings) 6.1 IMDB Rating 6.9
An deiner Schulter (On your shoulder)
What?
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People who added this item 3452 Average listal rating (2102 ratings) 7.4 IMDB Rating 7.9
The Notebook (2004)
Wie ein einziger Tag (Like a single day)
This sounds like it came out of a randomizer for cliche titles for romantic comedies. At least pretend to make an effort.
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People who added this item 205 Average listal rating (137 ratings) 6.7 IMDB Rating 6.9
Die unglaubliche Entführung der verrückten Mrs. Stone (The incredible kidnapping of the crazy Mrs. Stone)
Basically, they took the (already bad) idea from Airplane (see #11) and made it worse.
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People who added this item 923 Average listal rating (565 ratings) 5.9 IMDB Rating 6.5
Accepted (2006)
S.H.I.T. – Die High School GmbH (S.H.I.T. - The High School Company)
What people should that title attract to watch this film? Brainless wankers is the only answer I can think of. Typical example for a comedy who doesn't have a chance in Germany because of its horrendous title.
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People who added this item 4 Average listal rating (0 ratings) 0 IMDB Rating 5.8
Mr. Ricco (1975)
Was nützt dem toten Hund ein Beefsteak? (What's the use of a beef steak to a dead dog?)
Can anyone explain that one?
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People who added this item 168 Average listal rating (103 ratings) 6.1 IMDB Rating 6.9
Return to Me (2000)
Zurück zu Dir (Return to You)
Why?
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People who added this item 315 Average listal rating (229 ratings) 5.6 IMDB Rating 5.9
Crime is King
Another fake English title where a translation of the original title would have been fine.
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People who added this item 903 Average listal rating (568 ratings) 5.9 IMDB Rating 6.5
Cellular (2004)
Final Call – Wenn er auflegt muss sie sterben (Final Call - When he hangs up she has to die)
Another fine example for everything that's wrong with German titles sometimes. Fake English title? Check. Unnecessary subtitle which explains the fake English title? Check.
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People who added this item 574 Average listal rating (337 ratings) 7 IMDB Rating 7.1
Soylent Green (1973)
Das Jahr 2022. Die überleben wollen. (The year 2022. Those who want to survive.)
The plot is all about Soylent Green, this is what the movie is about. Why on earth would you change the title?
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This list is a compilation of German titles for movies made in a foreign language. It was inspired by the great Lost in Translation: Portuguese Titles list.

Germans tend to do three different major mistakes when trying to transform a foreign title into German.
I Give an English title an alternative English title.
Right, so you assume people can't understand basic English but you still use an English title which has mostly nothing in common with the actual story.
II Give the original title a subtitle.
Best example would be Scream. Everyone who went to that movie knows what the word scream means. There's even a girl screaming on the poster! The German subtitle is of course Schrei which means scream. Instead of just taking the English title or the translation they used both. Clever, really clever.
III Make the title something ridiculous so that everyone thinks it is some sort of dumb comedy made by even dumber people.

While I know it's not the easiest job to translate titles and make them fit into the language it is rather astonishing to see how some movies never had the chance to become famous here 'cause the title would be either stupid or misleading.

I hope I can explain the major absurd things people did when translating titles. Those used are the titles given in Germany, they can differ in Austria and Switzerland so they may be better there.

Feel free to recommend more titles.

(to be continued)

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34 votes
Kami-chan's Favourite Lists (60 lists)
list by Kamichan
Published 5 years, 8 months ago 8 comments



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Comments

Posted: 5 years, 7 months ago at Apr 21 14:16
Hahah, brilliant. Deutsche Filmübersetzungen...sind wirklich schrecklich. Fällt einem immer wieder auf wenn man mal durch ein Elektronikgeschäft schlendert. What were they thinking?
Deine Kommentare dazu machen die Liste noch besser. Ich musste so extrem lachen haha.

Ich fand auch schon immer Rebel Without a Cause, der auf deutsch dann "… denn sie wissen nicht, was sie tun" hieß, so sinnlos. (Ganz abwegig isses ja nicht aber es hört sich trotzdem bekloppt an)
Posted: 5 years, 7 months ago at Apr 21 20:57
tjaa dummisses ;) and whats with germans destroying english movies anyway???? die synchros sind ja auch immer der absolute HAMMER!! i´ve been refusing to watch english movie in german for years now. i dont think theres anything worse!
as my love (♥) Kami-chan already sayd :"brilliant" list!! =D
Posted: 5 years, 7 months ago at Apr 21 21:08
:D :D :D
...German dubs, another topic that better stays untouched...o_o
Posted: 3 years, 3 months ago at Aug 21 12:19
Ihr kleinen Wichser habt ja in eurem ganzen Leben nichts übersetzt und jetzt spielt ihr euch groß auf. Haha, der Idiot, der die Liste erstellte, hat wahrscheinlich nichts von der Skopostheorie gehört und würde am liebsten alles wörtlich übersetzen, HAHAHA. theBo, niemand ist an deinen Kommentaren interessiert, du Armleuchter, geh lieber Klos putzen.
Posted: 3 years, 3 months ago at Aug 21 12:25
Mit so einem Benutzernamen jemand anderen als Idioten zu bezeichnen sagt ja auch schon alles. Es geht überhaupt nicht ums wörtliche Übersetzen, das sollte aus der Liste hervorgegangen sein. Wie man sich an so etwas dermaßen ereifern kann und sich extra einen Account erstellt ist wirklich erstaunlich.
Viele Grüße, muss jetzt erstmal weiter übersetzen. :)
Posted: 2 years, 11 months ago at Nov 28 2:10
In addition: with TAKEN they realised their stupidity and named the sequel 96 HOURS - TAKEN 2 (though he clearly has more than 96 hrs. this time and there never was a TAKEN 1)
the german title for MEN, WOMEN AND CHILDREN is #ZEITGEIST (!) and
recently they released the wonderful WHAT WE DID ON OUR HOLIDAY under the german title EIN SCHOTTE MACHT NOCH KEINEN SOMMER (a scotsman doesn't make a summer)....but then again the only scotsman in the film doesn't make it through the summer....

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