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Boogie Nights Translation

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1269711.  Sat Jan 06, 2018 9:12 am Reply with quote

It was claimed that the Chinese translation of Paul Thomas Anderson's "Boogie Nights" is "His Great Devise Makes Him Famous". This is not entirely precise.

The most common translation would be "不羁夜“(bu jie ye, originally from Taiwan, I suppose). "ye" means "night", whereas "bu jie" could be roughly translated as "unchained". So it's actually a rather brilliant translation, since it not only manages to phonetically imitate the original title ("bu jie" vs. "boogie"), and it captures semantically the funky feel and mood of that film.

Your version seems to be referring to the Hong Kong translation, which is "一举成名”(yi ju cheng ming). This Chinese idiom means originally "suddenly becoming famous because of one single act". But the "ju", meaning "act" or "deed" in this context, also means "to raise" ”to lift". So you could intentionally “misread" the title as "becoming famous because of one single 'lifting-movement", aka "erection". So it's actually a kind of pun. Neither version mentions "great devise" or anything similar.

Last edited by brennteiskalt on Sat Jan 06, 2018 6:45 pm; edited 1 time in total

1269777.  Sat Jan 06, 2018 2:56 pm Reply with quote

Thank you brennteiskalt - that's great information. Welcome to the forums :-)


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