Sunday, July 8, 2007

Lost In Translation

Back over at Marco's blog, he pointed out a video on YouTube of a Bollywood version of Superman. Superman is flying around with Spiderwoman, who apparently, and for no discernible reason, can also fly. I mean c'mon!! She's a spider, not a... hawk, or a creature from a dead planet, whose powers are caused by the yellow sun! A little bit of realism here, people! I then went to a Turkish Superman video, much more along the lines of an actual Superman, (no dancing.)

From there, I came upon what must be the greatest thing that I've ever seen on YouTube, Turkish Rambo, Korkuzus. Watch, we'll discuss once it's over.

So, this is crazy, right? He's certainly not carrying all those rockets around with him. So, apparently, rockets are like so many dandelions in the Turkish grass. Hopefully, you aren't reading this before the video's over, because I'm about to ruin the surprise of the inexplicable scene where Korkuzus is about to bludgeon the implied bad guy boss with the business end of his rocket launcher, when a homely woman with blow dried hair starts talking to him from heaven/the Psychic Friends Network Studios/Glamour Shots. A moment of hesitation, then BAM! Bad guy dies from a couple of scrapes on his face.

So what is it about these poor translations of American entertainment? Why are we laughing at the fact that a toy with a cape on is held in front of a movie screen to imply flying? Is it because it's honestly funny? Or are we're just being imperial douchebags, laughing at the misguided foreigners who don't even have computer graphics? Or, is this thinking inherently douchebaggy to begin with? I think it's the latter.

I recently read a book by Chuck Klosterman where the entire second half of the book was like this. Hypothetical and aloof, not taking sides in the most passive aggressive "I'm writing this book to secretly judge you" way imaginable. Never before have I been so infuriated with an author that I like so much. Oh wait, Chuck Palahniuk. Dude's lost his game. Completely. Lullabye sucked, Haunted really sucked, I couldn't get through the first two chapters of Rant. The ratio of good Palahniuk books to bad is almost even, if not tipping towards bad. That's really too bad. I've been reading a lot lately. Right now I'm reading three books. (And I know that I'm completely leaving the boundaries of the original premise of this post, but I don't feel like starting another one, and this won't be long, I swear. Then again, aren't I making it long when I put more than one sentence inside of parentheses explaining how something won't be long?) I recently picked back up The Adventures of Kavelier and Klay, which for some inexplicable reason, I put down for a couple of months. Oh, wait, I know why, I started it after I finished Middlesex, and it's documented as impossible to enjoy the next book you pick up after you finish Middlesex. You won't enjoy it because it's not Middlesex. And nothing ever will be ever again. So, yeah, I'm reading Kavelier and Klay, and it's amazing, Chabon's just completely conjuring this visual world of comic books with his words, so fucking descriptive. That, and I'm reading The Land That Never Was, which is a nonfiction book about this guy, Sir Gregor McGregor, who was a Scottish Knight who made up a country in Central America in the early 1800's and sold land and perpetrated this enormous hoax that had all these people leaving behind their lives in Europe and move to what was really an uninhabitable swamp. There are about three other books that I'm taking turns at reading also right now, but I'm not going to go into them. (Thankfully.)

No comments: