Sunday, September 05, 2010

looped aphasia

Arguably, the quality of satellite television in India declined after the locals took over. It was disappointing to see channels dedicated to movies churning out junk that was anything but a full reeler. That it became harder to find a channel playing a long-forgotten flick after the land responsible for the making of the film replaced all goings-on with stercoraceous smegma was a form of irony that escaped the guano-brained executives.

One of the developments in the wake of the massacre of entertainment was the replacement of English flicks in the catalogue with versions dubbed into Hindi. Some of those chosen included the Jackie Chan films for Golden Harvest, which, originally in Cantonese, were released abroad (including India) dubbed into English. We now had a layered incongruity with Hindi sounds replacing English sounds while Jackie Chan's lips continued to mouth Cantonese.

An interesting variation was the case of South Indian flicks dubbed into Hindi. These poorly dubbed mind-numbing "entertainers" were christened using titles of existing Bollyhits along with a bonus suffix in English to comply with the de facto naming rule that was born near the end of the 20th century. This is why the Telugu movie Mass became Meri Jung: One Man Army. This also explains the curious case of a film named Arasatchi. Had it not been for financial hurdles, this would have been the first film starring Lara Dutta to hit the marquee (the unfortunate honour went to a case of bad eggs from the Bollyfold).

As was the norm, Ms. Dutta's Tamil voice was not her own. Years later, this film was one of the lucky several chosen to be treated to an inferior dubbing job. Inviting Ms. Dutta to try her hand at dubbing for herself in Hindi would have, unfortunately, cost the whole project a lot more. So they just had one of the people on the session call sheet to do the needful. One could only mourn the loss in translation. Again.

1 comment:

Debasish said...

"stercoraceous smegma"... Heh.

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