A Chinese Bootleg Changed All The Dialogue In Revenge Of The Sith
It's no secret that the Star Wars prequels aren't well-written. The plots are boring, the new aliens are racist caricatures, and the dialogue is godawful. With lines like "I'm haunted by the kiss that you should never have given me," it sometimes feels like Lucas put the prequels in one of those English to Chinese to English translators. But as it turns out, doing that would've made for funnier movies.
China has always had a thriving bootleg market. However, DVD bootleggers don't make the most nuanced of translators, often leaving the subtitling to crappy machines. And in the case of one of the oldest Star Wars bootlegs, the results are hilariously off. For example, Star Wars Episode III: Revenge Of The Sith was translated to Star War The Third Gathers: The Backstroke Of The West. Famously, Darth Vader's embarrassing "Nooooo" becomes the even more toddler-like "Do not want!"
LucasfilmFinally, a prequel character the audience can relate to.
The translation of Revenge Of The Sith became such a phenomenon that one fan dubbed the entire movie with the dialogue from those subtitles. And call us crazy, but it really adds some clarity to Anakin and Obi-Wan's climactic volcano planet duel.
Lucasfilm"You were the chosen friend!"
Some lines sound like bad freestyle poetry at an open mic, yet somehow are still more coherent metaphors than Lucas managed to write.
LucasfilmThe Jedi are the fish. Fame is authoritarianism. Crystal-clear.
Also, for a PG-13 movie with no obscenities whatsoever, there's a surprising amount of swearing in the translation. Though that does finally give the scene in which Obi-Wan and Yoda discover a room full of murdered children the emotional gravitas it needed.
Lucasfilm"Fucked up, this is."
It also sheds some much-needed light on the true relationship between the Emperor and Anakin.
Lucasfilm"Sorry, sorry. Full lightsaber." *wink*
Naturally, when The Force Awakens came out, another fan tried to contrive a sequel to The Backstroke Of The West, translating the movie's subtitles into Mandarin and then back again. The result isn't quite as magical, though it does totally nail the Kylo/Rey dynamic.
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