Friday, July 2, 2010

.SRT - Some Retarded Talk

Subtitles -Those inseparable companions of movie files. Those little minions,going by a rather plain name of .srt becomes a crucial part of our cinema experience especially if the film is in a foreign language or the film is too 'slangy' to comprehend. Take Guy Ritchie's whimsical tale 'lock,stock and two smoking barrels' for example. The London slang was difficult to get hold of and I had to seek the help of a subtitile.
But I have found that they are not always very helpful.on the other hand they can be distracting and times even annoying.Picture this:
the location is a typical gangster den (don ka adda) with guns , drugs, old drums, furniture that a 3-year-old can break etc etc There is a fierce inter-gang gun battle proceeding towards a bloody climax. Blood literally flowing all over the screen , human organs decapitated in ways that one cannot even think of; and the subtitle says - {Guns firing}. All that tension and mayhem reduced to just two words {Guns firing}.
Do they have to tell us even the most obvious? Tires screeching, raining , snowball rolling,kissing (oh yeah!),scratching head - all these can very well be exluded from the description.Its similar to
the instructions behind some shampoo bottles -
step 1 : Open the lid.
As if we don't know that! Anybody who can buy a shampoo bottle will definitely know that the lid has to be opened.
Another funny experience is when I watch dubbed movies. Oh! I have a great time watching them. Whether its the sophisticated Judi Dench playing M
uttering podaango!(thoo teri!in our rashtra bhaasha) in place of a rather restrained 'for heaven's sake Bond' or terrifying dinosaurs being called 'bheeman palli' ( just a harmless chipkali) I had pure unadultered fun. But this one is the creme de la creme.I thank my friend for sharing this with me .
Superman returns after a long soul-searching journey back to his rural abode. He is welcomed by his Mom with a classic 'Aa gaye mere laal'!(it does not translate well to other languages).
I enjoy watching  the dubbed versions more than the original and as far the subtitles are concerned - I still hunt for them.

Subtitles: On the Foreignness of Film (Alphabet City)


  1. he he;)
    Remember what did a Tamil channel announce for Mummy Returns?


    Hilarious man..

  2. @ashpro: Thanks for reading.