Hello. I was just thinking about something that has to do with learning languages.
I was watching the movie “Rounders” (Matt Damon and Edward Norton, about a gifted Poker player who is having dilemmas) last night and could not help but notice the type of English they use. The dialogue was FULL of idioms and phrases which are not that common, but make sense to most native English speakers (Americans from the North East and West Coast anyways…probably for the central parts too…but Im not 100% about how well British speakers would pick up on some of the little phrases).
But for someone learning English, the type of speech in this movie would proabably be VERY confusing. I can only imagine what the translation would read like. Im sure it would either
a) express the same kind of idea that the phrase contained, but using a phrase of the second language with COMPLETELY different words and probably mental imagery. A simple example would be translating the english “awesome” (as in hip, OK etc) to spanish “a fuego” (cool, as in awesome also, literally “on fire”). It gets the point across.
b) try to translate the phrase word for word while at the same time losing the meaning. like if someone says the english “hip” (as in cool), which gets translated as the Spanish “cadera” (which im pretty sure means like the Hip bone). Here, all meaning is lost.
Either way, someone watching Rounders in English while reading subtitles in their native tounge would be getting a strange picture.
Which leads me to my point: I think that watching movies from your own country which have come out elsewhere in the world is a good idea. This probably sounds confusing, here is an example.
You are a Brazillian who wants to watch a movie in English but with Portuguese subtitles. I think you should watch a locally made Brazillian movie, one like “Tropa de Elite” (which ANYONE should watch, in ANY language, VERY GOOD!!!), but watch it in ENGLISH speech with Portuguese subtitles.
I think here, a translation has already been done, and some of the dialogue has changed…the actual speech will contain phrases that arent as obscure.
In other words you are getting a good movie in a form of the target language that is NOT as strange and incomprehensible.
This is not to say that you shouldnt ever watch those foreign movies just as they are. They are good for their parts that have comprehensible material, and also for SOME exposure to the more obscure, natively understood form of the language which you will probably not understand till later in your learning. But they are good exposure.
Anyways, what do you all think? Did it make sense? Try it out if you like and let me know.
If you still dont know what I mean, let me know.