Forget the French: Canadian Bilingual DVD Artwork Atrocities

frenchdvdbilingual

Here in Canada, we do things a little differently than our American neighbours to the south. Oh sure, on the surface things appear pretty similar, but it’s the little details that truly separate us… and some of those little details hurt. Case in point: Canadian law requires that all consumer product packages be labeled in both of our country’s official languages (English and French). This includes DVDs.

Now under most circumstances, this law is perfectly reasonable, even though the French-speaking population encompasses just over 20% of the population and is limited primarily to the province of Quebec. However, when it comes to movie titles and DVD artwork, it’s a slightly different story. Now you’re dealing with a piece of art, and slapping French titles onto the pre-existing packaging for an English language film can lead to some terrible eyesores. Plus, in a lot of cases, it doesn’t even seem necessary. Is there really a big difference between United 93 and United Vol 93? I think United 93 would suffice.

Now I know a lot of people will probably think this is a pretty anal thing to complain about, and maybe they’re right. But I also know I’m not alone here. For Canadian DVD collectors and fans of graphic design, this is a major pet peeve, and some people will even go out of their way to order DVDs directly from the U.S. just to avoid the French. This is not a knock against French-Canadians or the French language… in fact, I’m willing to bet that many of them would prefer the English artwork as well, since that is how it was originally intended.

I’ve provided a gallery of some of the biggest offenders below so you can judge for yourself!

frenchdvd_ghostbusters

The new Canadian Blu-ray release for Ghostbusters prominently features the French title, “S.O.S. Fantomes”. It’s definitely the first time in 25 years that I’ve ever heard the movie called such a thing.

frenchdvd_pineappleexpress

Yes, the French word for pineapple is “ananas”. Ananas Express really rolls off the tongue, doesn’t it?

frenchdvd_iamlegend

If they have to provide a translation for the title, I prefer it to be in a small, non-descript font rather than trying to mimic the movie’s logo like this.

frenchdvd_predator

Same problem as the previous DVD.

frenchdvd_quarantine

The French title is so large that it almost looks like it’s a part of the English title. Couldn’t this be confusing for some people?

frenchdvd_27dresses

Another confusing translation since the French word for dresses is “robes”, which is also an English word. It makes it look like this could be a direct-to-video sequel where she tries on 27 different bathrobes to find the perfect one.

frenchdvd_jumper

Isn’t this a little redundant?

frenchdvd_underworld

Admittedly, it’s a pretty ugly cover to begin with, but the French titles at the bottom aren’t helping matters.

frenchdvd_getsmart

I suppose the pun in the English title wouldn’t really work in French, but still… “Max The Menace”? That’s the best they could come up with?

frenchdvd_weatherman

Literal translation of the French title: “Mr. Weather”. Is there no French word for “weather man”?

frenchdvd_mrmrssmith

I’m sure no French-speaking person would know what movie this was if the abbreviations for Mr. and Mrs. hadn’t been translated properly.

frenchdvd_united93

I don’t understand why they had to add the french word for “flight” in here. They specifically left it out of the English title to distinguish it from the made-for-TV movie Flight 93.

frenchdvd_gattaca

I guess the title “Gattaca” wasn’t good enough on its own in French. They had to call it “Welcome to Gattaca” instead.

frenchdvd_rv

You gotta love it… just two-letters in the title, and of course, the French translation ends up being the reverse order.

frenchdvd_intothewild

frenchdvd_takingofpelham

frenchdvd_zodiac

frenchdvd_minorityreport

Can you think of any other DVD covers that were ruined by terrible bilingual titles?



  • The Dark Knight is something along the lines of “La Chevalier Noir” and equally as disgusting. DVDs here should come with a two-sided sleeve so non-French people can reverse the artwork to have an all-English version. This isn’t me being a xenophobe; it’s just that if they’re going to do French translations on the box, the shouldn’t do it all half-assed. Why are only the titles translated? What if a French person doesn’t know what the word “WIDESCREEN” means? It doesn’t make sense that only the movie title is translated.

    Even worse is when the French titles take prominence over the English – like with the videogame “The Orange Box” that says “La Boite Orange” way bigger on the package. The game is in English when you play it!

  • Haha yeah I’ve seen La Boite Orange… classic.

    I agree about the double-sided sleeve. It is by far the easiest solution. The thing that pisses me off is that sometimes they actually make double-sided sleeves, and one side will be English/French combined, while the flip side is completely French. WTF!

  • Travis

    It does seem strange to require the title to be displayed in french, while nothing else is. If I was a french consumer, I would only be able to read the title but not a description of the film or a list of the dvd features. There has to be better a better solution than just plastering the title onto the english sleeve.

  • Dugen
  • Goon

    The worst ones are the one whose title takes up more space on the spine. Ie the Departed vs. Les Agents Dernieres… or the ones that put the french and english titles directly on top of each other, ie Rescue Dawn and Mr. and Mrs. Smith or Raging Bull.

    I am happy with the companies who when they have a paper case, stick English on one side and french on the other. This does not happen enough and I dont know why.

    I ordered There Will Be Blood from the US because I could not handle that case and that films title being tainted by the French version “Il y a du sang”

    Worse than United vol. 93 is something where the title is same English and French but they do this: “K-Pax” – “K-Pax (version francaise)”

    But the absolute worst thing that you did not mention is when there are tv series who have gone several volumes without French versions and then all of a sudden BAM French/English fuckups – The Simpsons did this, Seinfeld too to a less annoying degree. I was actually going to get Bond 22 to be a completest since we have all the other ones but the French/English on that one is so damn horrible, that I’m going to wait and order it from the US, or wait till I get back to St. Catharines for a day trip since Thats Entertainment manages to end up with a lot of English packaging only versions of things.

  • Goon

    http://img.amazon.ca/images/I/513qOv8QT8L._SS500_.jpg

    Here’s an awful one – Snow Angels – the Spine is particularly bad, but look at that, they even translated the fucking CRITIC BLURBS.

  • Raph

    Same happens here in Holland. But it’s mostly just the TV series that have ‘L’integral de la saison X’ pasted on them. Really annoying though.

  • Goon

    This stuff doesn’t happen on records up here, people should know… I think the requirement is to do it if there is a French version available on the disc.

    the band Junior Boys though, decided to bring it over to the design of their new CD jacket, perhaps to celebrate being Canadian, or maybe to take the piss at how horrible it would be if they did this to music too:
    http://files.list.co.uk/images/2009/04/30/junior-boys-album-cover-lst037784.jpg

  • dirrrtyfrank

    I loathe French on my DVD Spines and have made an amendment for my BluRay Collection to only buy the American versions of movies.

    So far, it has been a bit of a chore but I probably saved money waiting for Amazon.com sales.

    I should post a picture of the spines of the collection on here. They look GLORIOUS. I do not regret my decision. It gives me such a warm feeling inside to gaze upon them and not see two titles.
    It was a life changing and erection inducing decision.

  • Glendon

    I remember internet grumblings when the Revenge of the Sith packaging didn’t match the style of Episodes I and II’s (especially the spine) due to the addition of the French translation.

  • marko

    I live in quebec and Ive been raised learning both french and english but my first language is french. I live in a small town so here the theater only shows french dubbed movies and since Im 14 years old I only watch the original version of the movie (english that is) Im sauing this because not only our laws butcher up movie posters movie title and cases they french dub the movies and god it sounds ugly not only the voices doesnt fit the character nor the actor the voice-overs are made by “actors and famous people of quebec” so you recognize the voice of these people and it sucks so much I understand what Sean is talking about.

  • Henrik

    Seems weird to have no problem with the dubbing of foreign films, but to have a major issue with the translation of a title.

    What’s aesthetically pleasing about a DVD collection anyway? Nothing.

  • As an anal Star Trek fan, I buy the Canadian, Chinese and American versions of Star Trek films.

  • Big Hungry

    Maybe the U.S. should put out French Movies from now on! That would solve the problem and brings up the question what does the Canada cover of the dvd “Les Misérables” look like?

  • Seems weird to have no problem with the dubbing of foreign films, but to have a major issue with the translation of a title.

    I’ve always found it odd that other countries dub their theatrical releases when here in America we are pretty much strictly subtitles.

  • Goon

    It really pisses me off that the English speaking world accepts that foreign films will be subtitled, but if I turn on the french channel and see them watching any movie or the Simpsons, it has to be dubbed for them…

    I mean jeez, with the Simpsons, how much you lose by substituting those voice actors and their professional senses of timing and ties to those characters, its so insulting that this could be accepted as the norm.

  • Henrik

    I agree that dubbing is a horrible way to go.

    But you have to understand the mechanics. Dubbing is a complete industry in the southern european countries + France and Germany. Tons of actors live off of dubbing international releases. And America exports so much, and it comes as a complete package, they make the content, the promotion, everything. It is so cheap for a network to pick up american shows, since the american makers think of it as just a bonus to domestic, that national shows have a hard time competing. Yet, they still want to employ their actors etc. It is a bad way to do it, but there is some nuances to the whole thing.

    Matt says that America accepts subtitles. I think America is the worst offender, they go so far as to not subtitle, not even dub it, they just make their own american version of it! How much do you lose by that?!?

  • Goon

    Henrik, as much as North American remakes irk me too with their lack of necessity, it bugs me less then altering the art of existing, perfectly fine film and passing it off as acceptable.

    The subtitle debacle on the Let the Right One In DVD bugs me more than the remake they’re planning.

  • BigHungry

    Wow… Henrik good point on the U.S. just making their own version of it. Instead of subtitling it. I think on of the main reasons for that is that they (The U.S.) see the foreign film as a test film. If it does well in that country….. then they just make their own version of it. Because they feel they can make a better movie and make more money of it (which I disagree with it being better completely) I think people are scared to make an original story movie idea these days. They all seem to feel they should find something that already has an audience and they are sure that the fans will come to the movie. That is the main reason for the comic book trend in my opinion.

    I think a good idea for Canada with the language issue cluttering up the artwork, would be to print the one Language version on the backside of the dvd cover so the consumer could choose or put a sicker overtop of the shrink wrap. Another Idea which I have done when I hate a cover is make your own. I wonder if the studios would be willing to mail Canadians the one language version for a small fee.

  • Greg

    Really? DVD packaging? Jesus Christ. What’s the big deal? Sean, did you wash your puss pill down with a glass of whine?

  • Goon

    BigHungry – in Canada what studios like New Line did to start (and this is perfect and is for example, on my Hedwig and the Angry Inch DVD) is one side of the DVD packaging is ALL ENGLISH and one side is all french. I guess this did not fly, and I dont know why. Now a lot of studios still have printing on both sides, but on one side the English title is bigger/first and the other side has the French title bigger/first

  • The canadian spine on “8 Mile” dvd said:

    8 Mile / 8 Mile

    …Fail. Sold it of course. Couldn´t stand seeing it on the shelf.

  • @ColinZeal – so if you do the math, the actual title of the movie is “1” – haha, sorry stupid math joke I couldn’t resist.

    As mentioned up above, I also hate series collections that go English-only and then start releasing in bilingual packaging. It messes up the look of the spines on the shelves. I really wouldn’t mind it if the French didn’t look so forced in there – like if actual design thought was applied to integrating the French in nicely. But it’s not. The French is just slapped on in most cases.

  • Bryan

    Definitely knew about the Ghostbusters being called the S.O.S. Fantomes cause of my high school french class. The teacher had a slew of french movies, some of them dubbed. She had Ghostbusters II (one of my favorites), but it was called S.O.S. Fantomes II. Needless to say, I was a terrible student in the class and the teacher never let us watch it, until one day when the whole class could either study for the final, or watch S.O.S. Fantomes II. My friend and I watched the movie, and failed the final. Good times.

  • Hey Sean, is this true for Criterion releases as well? Because that would be a damn shame.

  • Bas

    Like Raph said it sometimes happens in the Netherlands, but it’s a different situation. First of all, movie-titles are never translated to Dutch (nor do we have the tradition of dubbing like Germany and France, we just subtitle everything). The exception to that rule is kiddie fare , which is released in its original form for adults and dubbed (with a translated title) for kids. The second difference is that it’s purely a money-driven thing: a French/Dutch version (French: title, dubbed and subbed; Dutch: just subbed) can be sold in the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg and France. Still, it just happens with tv-shows and very rarely with movies – the only movie in my collection that has it is ‘What Lies Beneath’ (aka ‘Apparences’).

    As for it being ugly, I agree. But there are a lot of ways in which packaging can suck. For example, I think the blueish background of the Ghostbusters Blu-Ray is more appalling than the added French title.

  • I work for a CD and DVD supplier in America and as a way of saving money, my employer buys DVDs in bulk from Canada, and hence, they come with the French subtitles. I guess we Americans have disdain for the French because most of these DVDs are returned to us. I was thinking of asking about the subject. This article was written first, though.

  • Omi-san

    “I mean jeez, with the Simpsons, how much you lose by substituting those voice actors and their professional senses of timing and ties to those characters, its so insulting that this could be accepted as the norm.”

    I’ve always watched the Simpsons in both english and french (Quebec dubbing) and I can assure there is nearly nothing lost in translation. The dubbing is very good.

    On the other hand, France’s dubbing of the Simpsons is horrible.

  • Tim1974

    I live in the United States and we do not at the moment have a problem like that with DVDs. However, I can see that some day it may go in that direction. Here we are starting to see both English and Spainsh on many items. At the moment it doesn’t bother me because I find it interesting to try to learn some words from another language. Nonetheless, I can also see the concern about dubbing and the chance of losing the voice inflection of the original character.

  • TigreUnico

    WOW !!!
    The great anglo-saxon “culture”
    is having another severe crisis !!

    Aesthetics……brought to it’s knees
    by a few french words . Talk a bit
    also SVP about how a wonderful part of
    NA can have tunel vision…..
    Please DO travel and try to (maybe)
    understand one or two different culture(s) from yours. There may se still hope !!??

  • Pascal

    Hello boys and girls who complains there are some french words on their DVD boxes!!! Yes my friends WELCOME TO CANADA!!! You are not living in the U.S my loved ones!!!! Before the 70’s, almost everything in packages and products was writing in English in Montreal even if the population was 80% francophone. Now, you better understand why there was some frustrations out there??? I understand your issues about ruining your collections by having french words in your CANADIAN DVD collections, but the answer is that french makes the country appears distinct from U.S and I just love it!!!! One day if you all realize how the french language in your country makes our citizens create something unique, distinct from U.S , and has a strong futur economic power… you will maybe encourage those behaviours and be proud of it !!! Do you know there will be no more Canadian made box office movies if it was not from the french language movies? In 2009, 9.5 millions around Canada (not only in Quebec ) speaks only or also in french…out of a population of 33 millions people….it`s not so bad after all…French is not also only spoken by 20% of this nation. IT IS ONE OF THE SYMBOLS OF THIS NATION…. For many citizens in Canada, French is not only a way to communicate… it is THE EXISTENCE OF THE BIGGEST PROVINCE IN CANADA who actually has EQUAL SIZE of population than the FOUR WESTERN provinces in Canada and has almost FOUR TIMES the size of population than the EAST COAST of Canada… The first 100 years of this nation were totally written and spoken in French!!!!(between 17th and 18th century…) If you see all the taxes collections from the French cultural Canadian language economy , it accounts more than a billion dollars per year!!!

    WAKE UP !!!!! AND STOP WATCHING THE UNITED STATES FORGOT SAKE!!! KNOW WHATS HAPPENING IN YOUR OWN COUNTRY!!!! We all benefits from it because all of this are shown in our income taxes and makes canadians work and create jobs…In what are you so proud about seeing only FOREIGN Americans DVD boxes??? At least, if there were canadian made I will maybe(!!!)see the issue… Are you a bunch of zombies illuminated by the American culture or interested in your own unique canadian way of doing stuff??? Believe me, I am proud to be bilingual,to see french written in those packages around Canada. John A. Macdonald or Pierre Elliott Trudeau should be proud in the sky out there.. their dreams of a united French and English nation have finally made sense in the new millennium… Thank god!!! WE all survived because our unique openness toward eachother!!! We did not bomb eachother , we tried to listen and adapt….Vive la fleur de lys in the maple leaf!!!! Americans might invade you guys and girls by their movies and culture. There is one way out of this possession … the answer is in FRENCH!!!!! ALL Canadians are still unique in culture because some of us decides to speak one of the first spoken language of our nation, to fight for it and to see it everywhere…It makes me a proud canadian for sure not an american wanna be!!!

  • Josh

    To the poster above me…the issue has nothing to do with not being proud of our heritage. It’s about taking a piece of art and altering it for the worse. If these were designed with bilingual titles in mind, fine, but the case art for these DVDs was not, and by adding more text to the graphic (thereby decreasing the size of the original text in order to fit it), you are deviating from the original artistic intent, which, even as a proud Canadian, I cannot agree with. I take offense to being called an “American wannabe” just because I prefer to see a piece of art as it was meant to be seen, not graphically altered to fit with language laws. It has nothing to do with being “zombies” or “illuminated by American culture”. It’s all about artistic intent, and I am absolutely certain that those who design the artwork would be disappointed to see their art modified in such a manner. Are you telling me the only way to be a proud Canadian is to have French written all over everything? Please. My culture is not that one dimensional. My preference to see art as it was meant to be seen doesn’t make me any less of a Canadian than you.

  • Just goes to show you, the French are a-holes… even if you mix in some Canadian.

  • Walsh

    Mr Shut-up Ed , there are a pretty bunch of “french a -holes in your country “, even one of your relative might be one of them…. there are proud Canadians as well ( AND NOT AS SEPARATIST AS YOU MAY THINK…)and believe me there are here to stay and to continue fighting for their languages until they die… Those comments just show why there are always been tension in this nation. We are always “walking on eggs” when we are talking about those languages issues… Yes i do believe French must be shown and taught even more in our country.

    The point is…is it truly ruining art collection???? The answer is subjective , for Josh I do see your points but honestly… for all the boxes shown in this site…I see maybe two or three movies out there that needs maybe a refreshment. If the french language version is in the box, why it is not making sense to sell the bilingual boxes all across Canada??? Do we have to change all boxes In French speaking only for the 8 millions living in Quebec for defend able artistic values? I just say and repeat again The french language is a symbol of survival in Canada not only a way to communicate.. there is no way we can do anything about it ….because there were existing inequities between the two cultures for more than 300 years … It’s only since the 60″s that it has changed for the better… the scars are still open out there for many generations to come …Hope to clarify…. and …peace… no hateful comments please .. you may agree or disagree but please respect ….

  • Goon

    I think Shut-Up-Ed needs to look up “New France” on wikipedia and understand how much French blood is among his ancestors. For all the France bashing in the US they really don’t seem to realize how much of it is part of their heritage.

  • Goon

    “Do we have to change all boxes In French speaking only for the 8 millions living in Quebec for defend able artistic values?”

    No, the argument is as simple as this. The paper is already printed on both sides. Both sides are bilingual, but on each side one comes first, one comes second. We propose one side all French, one side all English, so you can preserve better design AND get the language you prefer.

  • Xhubb

    I think you guys might be better off finding a more constructive way to spend your time. Countries all over the world are multilingual. For example, the tiny Central American country of Guatemala has something like 21 different Mayan languages in active use, in addition to Spanish. South Africa has eleven official languages. It’s not really that big of a deal. The very limited amounts of French that we have access to in English-speaking Canada is actually a blessing. Being exposed to a second language is an opportunity. So it’s on DVD covers. Are you guys really so hypersensitive that you can’t handle having another language written on your DVD covers? It spoils the aesthetics? I really don’t understand how. Try taking the opportunity to do something interesting like learning another language. See the world. Meet a hot girl that speaks French or Spanish or something. Something interesting at least. I just don’t understand the issue of how the existence of two languages on the cover infringes upon the aesthetics and why, of all things, you would be worried about that.

  • Josh

    I really think you’re missing the point on this one. The only people who are “hypersensitive” about the issue, as you say, are people who enjoy collecting DVD/Blu-ray and are proud to show them off by displaying them on their shelves. If you’re showing off a piece of art, obviously you want it to be seen as it was meant to be seen. Graphically altering the art to conform with language laws hurts the original artistic intent. The fact that some of us display our collection is the reason why some people are a bit sensitive about it. Another problem that has been brought up is the fact that the plot synopsis and special features listed on the back are also translated into French, reducing the already small text to about half its size to fit everything in both languages. Not all of us have perfect vision, including myself. Even with glasses, I have to squint to read the cases sometimes. Ultimately, we want it to be seen as it should. If the film is in English, put English titles. If the film is in French, put French. If the film itself is bilingual, get creative and make the covers bilingual. I’m not doubting the blessing of a second language (I’m bilingual myself), but perhaps such avenues would be better explored elsewhere.

  • Xhubb

    It’s true that several of our language laws in Canada are a little over the top. I also see how having to strain to be able to read your language of choice would be a nuisance.

    I don’t understand how having two languages in itself destroys the aesthetics of a DVD cover. In most cases, I find the critics’ blurbs and the “Special offer inside!” or “Unrated edition!” advertisements to be as much of an eyesore as anything. But I agree that there was no need to put the French title of Gattaca on the cover of Gattaca. I’ve of course seen these examples, not just on DVD covers, where the same word’s put twice, as if a French-speaking person would somehow be totally baffled by an English word that’s identical to the French word. Or sometimes the French is actually just bad French because the company knew they needed to put something on their label that passed as French, but didn’t have the money or didn’t see the need to hire someone specifically for the purpose.

    So you guys are the collectors and I’m not. Personally, as an English speaker, I enjoy having exposure to French, and would be upset if that were taken away. But it’s not really French on DVD covers that I get anything out of. Way more it’s things like listening Radio Canada. If funding were moved from monitoring DVD covers to giving French instruction in school that actually teaches French, or any other language for that matter, to English-speaking people (it actually is possible despite the general perception), then I would not have even the slightest regret.

    I see how a restriction on the freedom to get the copies that you’re interested in could be a nuisance, so maybe I missed your point, in which case my comments were misplaced. It seems to me that Goon’s double-sided insert suggestion is a good solution if this is a problem.

  • Xhubb

    So I apologize if I was rude or mischaracterized you guys. The dubbing can indeed at times also be a disaster. And why are there DVDs where it is actually not possible to turn subtitles off?

  • Xhubb

    That being said, I disagree that the only people who complain about issues such as this one are motivated by an appreciation for art. So I hope you understand that statements such as the “Forget the French” in the title are a little misleading.

    It’s worth pointing out that there are plenty of communities outside Quebec where French is spoken, although they don’t have the same visibility through numbers. For example, Winnipeg has a university that offers all its courses and services in French, New Brunswick is entirely bilingual, and then there are the Acadians who against all odds are present and still speak French in a few scattered communities.

    French-speaking pockets in provinces like Manitoba were previously much stronger than they are now, but it wouldn’t be very surprising if within a couple generations French was all but gone from these communities. You and I agree that this is not due to whether the French title of Ghost Busters is present on the DVD case, but I hope you understand where I’m coming from anyway.

  • David Walsh

    As an Australian who lived in Canada for 5 years(2 years in Quebec) and wanted to learn the French language, I found the premise of English and French on most advertising a great help. I know it is different for Canadians who are sick of the governmental push for equality.

    I found it fascinating, educational and fun to see the strange ways they had translated a lot commercial products.

    Tabarnac!! c’est drole.

  • Casey

    Having French on the packaging quite frankly ruins the collection. I’ll usually buy the damn french covered version here and print off a new cover with original art from the internet. (I’ll do this anyway if its a classic film and for some reason they put on new crappier artwork) but if it comes in a box (Simpsons season sets etc.) I have to order it from the States, and that can be a pain in the ass.

    And to those who make fun of us for hating to have tarnished collections, just remember that the movie companies want to eventually eliminate the physical medium of DVD and BluRay so they cam sell digital downloads. Its the collectors that will be the only ones left wanting to buy discs, and why would they want their collections tainted with butchered art work?

  • Simon says

    This list wouldn’t be quite as petty and silly (not to mention anal), if the author would stick to design issues. But to complain about the titles themselves? All of these are taken from the French release titles, who often have their own history and reasoning. “Max the Menace” is lame? Well, maybe, but that’s what the original series was called in the 1960s, so of course the remake is called the same. Why not call “Ghostbusters” “S.O.S. Fantomes”?, “Ghostbusters” doesn’t mean anything to a French person. And how funny that he makes fun of the word “ananas” which is used in many languages as opposed to the one in which “pineapple” is used. Maybe the English language title is the problem then?

    This list seems to exist to show off the author’s smug attitude rather than visual crimes.

    P.S. I am neither French nor French-Canadian, I’m just amused that someone with little understanding of French or French movie culture wants to spill his wit and wisdom about it…

  • Nadine

    I was in Paris two weeks ago and found the weirdest movie translation yet.

    The movie “The Hangover” is called “Very Bad Trip” in France…I could not believe it when I saw that DVD cover. Apparently, you have to say “Very Bad Trip” with a very french accent and there you have the translation of Hangover!

  • Frank

    The worst title translation ever has got to be for the film “Christmas Vacation”. Somehow the best they could come up with was “Le sapin a des boules”.

    Another one that should be up on this page is Adam Sandler’s “Click”, translated to “Clic” (sans ‘k’ en français).

  • asdas

    Maybe you Canadians should stop whining so much and pay the little money extra on Amazon.com if you want an all-English cover.

  • Jon

    I like how 47 made a whining comment.

  • English titles on dvd covers often sound awful in French. Furthermore french voice covers are also really bad. Most french people prefer seeing films in english. Sometimes I wonder why american & english movies are available in french…

  • Pedram

    I came across this article while trying to find a way to buy Blu-Rays in Canada without the French additions. How funny that someone else has the exact same motivation as me to not see their movie collections ruined by the addition of extra text, and even went to the extend of writing an article on it.

    I even went so far as to not purchase movies I wanted that were on sale in Canada just because I saw on the Canadian Amazon site that they’d have the French added too. That kind of think just makes me go “ugh” and roll my eyes.
    I do see it as ruining the aesthetics and the original intent, and I should have the choice of whether I have to have it or not.

    Now before you say I’m just another one of the prejudiced ignorant people, I do speak French (in addition to another language also), so it’s not about that. I don’t mind bi-lingual labels on things like cereal or chips, or having a french section in manuals for electronics or whatever. But Blu-Ray/DVD covers are a different story. As was said before, it’s something that you have as a collection on your shelf that you display kind of like art (though obviously not exactly the same thing) and you should have the choice of how it looks, since that is part of the whole appeal. Otherwise we’d just throw away the packaging and stick all our discs in binders. Granted the solution of a French insert inside could help (so as to keep the languages separate), but why not let the consumer have the option of getting the English version or French Version on the web site or in the store? That way we’d save paper/ink, and everyone would be happy. Having to stock 2 versions of the movies might not make the stores happy (it would be more feasible for online stores), but they would have a sense of how many French/English they normally sell and could stock accordingly, or maybe just send back the versions that don’t sell. Or maybe that should just be an online thing if brick & mortar stores don’t want to deal with the hassle. In any case, I might just have to stick to ordering my Blu-Rays from the US (good thing I live on the border). I’m really hoping that the LOTR EE trilogy I just ordered from Amazon’s Canadian site doesn’t have the Frenchness all over it, since that’s not what it showed on their site. But who knows, since they don’t always show the bilingual covers on all their movies.