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prolixitysquared
Posted: Thursday, August 27, 2009 5:45:42 PM
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Quentin Tarantino's newest film, Inglourious Basterds, recently opened in theatres. I saw it Friday night and was quite a fan, although admittedly, I didn't start to appreciate it immensely until toward the end.

I heard a brief radio interview with Tarantino before I saw the film. He was saying how films with scripts in English, when they would have in actuality been spoken in other languages to be historically accurate even for fiction, are disingenuous and take away from the integrity of the screenplay.

In the film, English, French, German, and Italian are the languages I know of which were spoken by the actors. More might have been involved. So subtitles are necessary, which I'm sure some might see as a tiring burden, but it's one way to keep the most respect in tact for the sake of the film.

What is your response to any or all of this ?

And does anyone know anything about the reasoning behind the spelling of the title ? I meant to look into that soon enough ! At first I didn't realize I'd been spelling the title incorrectly.
rluna
Posted: Thursday, August 27, 2009 5:57:27 PM
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There was a 1977 film named Inglorious Bastards. Perhaps he couldn't use the same name. :)
grammargeek
Posted: Thursday, August 27, 2009 6:02:07 PM
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Movie subtitles didn't used to bother me, but now that I've gotten old and need trifocals, it is a bit more of a struggle. Of course, I'm usually at home watching a DVD play on my moderately sized, old fashioned, non-HD TV. I suppose it would help if I were to watch it in the theater where the subtitles appear on a huge screen far, far away from where I am seated!

Either way, I always get frustrated when the color of the subtitle wording so closely matches the background in some scenes that it is almost impossible to read.

TB
Posted: Thursday, August 27, 2009 6:32:14 PM
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prolixitysquared wrote:
So subtitles are necessary, which I'm sure some might see as a tiring burden, but it's one way to keep the most respect in tact for the sake of the film.

What is your response to any or all of this ?



We watch and discuss a lot of foreign films (no,not that kind Shame on you ) with subtitles and we've found that after a while we forget we're reading. An interesting side note is that our young son was reading the subtitles long before we realized he could do it.
LeadPal
Posted: Thursday, August 27, 2009 6:54:10 PM
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I like closed captioning. Being able to follow speech both audibly and visually improves comprehension, which is helpful for a complex, densely written story. Of course, it's pointless for a fluffy action flick.

I'm slightly less fond of actual subtitles, since the translation obviously doesn't match the speech. But it feels very cool when I manage to puzzle out a few foreign words from their context.
cool_guay
Posted: Thursday, August 27, 2009 7:34:53 PM
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grammargeek wrote:


Either way, I always get frustrated when the color of the subtitle wording so closely matches the background in some scenes that it is almost impossible to read.


Applause I hate that too!
GeorgeV
Posted: Friday, August 28, 2009 3:01:48 AM
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On a recent Letterman, Tarantino claimed the spelling was his whimsical idea.
Subtitles - I have seen a film some time ago, where the white letters had black borders. It should be the standard, but perhaps it is more costly.
doubutsuMother
Posted: Friday, August 28, 2009 5:06:12 AM
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The French solved the problem of subtitles being blocked out by people's ginormous hats by moving them to the top of the movie screen. The number of baguette fights in the theaters dropped sharply as a direct result.
dp
Posted: Friday, August 28, 2009 8:34:10 AM
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doubutsuMother wrote:
The French solved the problem of subtitles being blocked out by people's ginormous hats by moving them to the top of the movie screen. The number of baguette fights in the theaters dropped sharply as a direct result.


Applause Le funny.
bcadmin
Posted: Friday, August 28, 2009 8:55:13 AM
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While I do not mind reading subtitles or using closed captions, I don't agree with Tarrentino's assertion that not using the historic language--even for fiction--to be "disingenuous and take away from the integrity of the screenplay." (He clearly does not hold the same view regarding the laws of physics.)

With all dramatic presentations, the audience must "suspend disbelief" to accept even the most basic concept of dramatic representation--it is inherently a lie. These actors are not the people they represent. The sets are just sets, not the real place; the time is not the real time. To select one piece, the language, as that which must be historic (perhaps it is the easiest artifice to control), is in itself disingenuous.
risadr
Posted: Friday, August 28, 2009 9:57:12 AM
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I haven't seen it yet (I want to so badly!), but a friend of mine who saw IB the day before yesterday said that it was "epic."

I agree with QT's assertion that, to use a language other than that which would have been used in the region/time that the film is set, is disingenuous. However, I see this done far more often than not for ease of appeasing the American movie-goer. I think that subtitles are wonderful, personally, and that they give a film a bit of extra "flavor."
early_apex
Posted: Friday, August 28, 2009 10:11:37 AM
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There is such a rich tradition of citizens of ancient Rome speaking English with a British accent that we tend not to notice that they are nearly always portrayed that way.

There was a time when all movies had either subtitles or black screens with dialogue interspersed throughout. Piano music provided another dramatic element.
Cathie8653
Posted: Friday, August 28, 2009 10:48:53 AM
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Location: London
early_apex wrote:
There is such a rich tradition of citizens of ancient Rome speaking English with a British accent that we tend not to notice that they are nearly always portrayed that way.

There was a time when all movies had either subtitles or black screens with dialogue interspersed throughout. Piano music provided another dramatic element.


Cathie says;

The world over has the same problem with popular music singers, they invariably try to sing with an American accent. Painful to some of us and I am glad to say now being eroded by UK singers using their own accents instead. If I could remember her name i would tell you - but there is a stunning Northern Irish girl singer, whose broad brogue sweeps the mind to the Mountains of Morne.
nxt_annawintour
Posted: Monday, August 31, 2009 11:52:00 AM
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I also have a question concerning a certain point made in the movie (possible spoilers? don't read further if you don't want to!)

One member of the Basterds gives himself away by holding up his pointer, middle and ring finger to indicate the number 3. A woman in the film explains that Germans do not indicate the number 3 that way with their hands; rather, they hold up their thumb, pointer and middle fingers.

Is this true, or something Tarantino made up for the movie?
fred
Posted: Monday, August 31, 2009 12:15:00 PM
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Yay, I want to kill some Nazis too, oh please, oh please can I?
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