Translating anything from one language to another is a tricky proposition. There’s not always a straight up, one to one correlation, so sometimes the results are questionable. This goes for everything from novels to film, and movie titles are no exception. Just Google a phrase like “movie title translations” and you’ll wind up with list after list of funny, unusual, and flat out weird versions of titles for American movies. Like Hey, Where Are The Babies? (Sweden’s Swingers), Just Send Him To University Unqualified as Risky Business is known in China, and France’s Teeth From the Sea, also known as Jaws. And there are so, so many more. This is never going to go away, and one of the summer’s biggest hits just got one of the best bad translations you’ve ever heard.
Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy is a huge worldwide hit, raking in over $650 million globally. A big part of this is in China, which has become a huge secondary market (increasing international demand for American blockbusters is a huge part of why Transformers: Age of Extinction, now the biggest box office hit ever in China, has grossed $835 million dollars overseas as opposed to $245 million domestically).
The ChinesePod Blog has taken the popularity of Guardians to break down the language and help some people learn a bit of Mandarin, which seems like a cool way to dive into a new tongue. And when they dissected the title on this poster…
…it translates to Interplanetary Unusual Attacking Team, which I have to admit is an awesomely terrible moniker, though it is a wildly accurate description of the actual film. After all, if you can’t describe at team that includes a half-human thief, a green assassin, a blue madman, an anthropomorphic raccoon, and an eight-foot-tall talking alien tree as “unusual,” then there is no other situation in the universe where you can use that term.
They’re also certainly “interplanetary,” as they travel to many different worlds throughout the course of the movie, so that fits. They’re even a team, though a reluctant one at first—maybe it’s more accurate to say they become a team over the course of their adventures together. And as far as attacking goes, there’s also a great deal of that, even if much of it is somewhat ill advised. All in all, this tells you about as much information about the actual film as the name Guardians of the Galaxy, maybe even a little bit more, so what the hell. From now on, this movie will be known around these parts as Interplanetary Unusual Attacking Team.
Okay, we won’t be doing that, but whatever you want to call the film—Guardians of the Galaxy, Interplanetary Unusual Attacking Team, or something else entirely—hits Blu-ray and DVD on December 9, with digital copies available well before that on November 18.