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HTLAL Film Club 2015

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Senior Member
Virgin Islands
Speaks: Ladino
Joined 5048 days ago

2237 posts - 6731 votes 
Speaks: English*, Spanish, Portuguese, Haitian Creole, Creole (French)

 Message 1 of 31
15 December 2014 at 12:01am | IP Logged 
Welcome to the HTLAL Film Club 2015. Its creation came about because of a need on the forum to have a place where people can discuss about the films/television series they watch instead of just the quantity. This is not the Super Challenge, which I encourage all learners who wish to make a dramatic improvement in their language skills to do.

You are encouraged to write in any TL if you wish, but it isn't required. If you do write in TL, then you must include either a translation into English or, at least, a synopsis in English of your main points so that everyone may benefit from possibly discovering a new film, actor, series or director, even if they don't speak your TL. Your translation doesn't have to be word for word, UN translator standard. Recommendations of films and series to watch are welcome- please flesh them out a bit instead of just posting a simple list with links (see "Links" for posting guidance).

If you are watching, a film/series in TL dub from English or a TL dub from another language, this is alright. You can, indeed, talk about these here as long as you are watching in your TL. If you are a learner of English, you are welcome to discuss here as well.

Corrections: If posters wish to have their TL's corrected, they should state so clearly in the beginning of the post or at the end. If posters do not wish their posts to be corrected by non-native speakers, this should also be made clear. Posters should bear in mind that the HTLAL text interface isn't designed well for corrections and it can be a time consuming task for the correctors. If someone goes to the time and trouble to do this for you, they should be thanked. If a poster doesn't state that they wish to be corrected, the assumption should be that they do not want to be corrected without being asked. Private messages can be used to ask someone if they want a correction.

Links: No one should post links to illegal downloads, illegal dvd purchases or illegal streaming sites including full movies or series on youtube/vimeo as per Forum Rules. If you do so, you will be reported to the moderators and the post will be dealt with accordingly. Quotes from films should be attributed to the film's title. Links to short clips should be in accordance with the CODE OF BEST PRACTICES IN FAIR USE FOR ONLINE VIDEO, please see Item Two: Using copyrighted material for illustration or example in particular.

This can be tricky. What is "short"? What is fair use?. Let's say, for the purposes of this thread on this forum, that anything over 6 minutes (not specifically made for youtube or the web or freely published by the copyright owner) is crossing the line. Ultimately it is best to avoid any doubt. If you are unsure, don't post the link. We don't want the moderators to close our thread. Perception is reality. If you violate copyright, you will get busted by the moderators. Official trailers can make the post fun for others and illustrate your topic well. They are widely available and legal to use without worry.

Images: Images can also make a post fun, but keep in mind that too much of a good thing can spoil that fun. Be judicious about image use. Please try to edit the size of images you post so that they don't expand the screen width in such a way that it makes reading a chore of scrolling back and forth from left to right for every line on the page. Please check your post to see if the photo is too large. If you can't edit the image to fit within the optimum screen width for reading, please delete it and provide a link instead. Please keep other members in mind. One post with giant photos can ruin a whole page of posts for everyone else. If this happens, feel free to point this out to the poster.

Disagreements: If you disagree with someone's post about a film or television series, please, try to disagree without being disagreeable.

Let's talk about what you are watching in films and series! Enjoy!"

Edited by iguanamon on 15 December 2014 at 6:53pm

5 persons have voted this message useful

Senior Member
Virgin Islands
Speaks: Ladino
Joined 5048 days ago

2237 posts - 6731 votes 
Speaks: English*, Spanish, Portuguese, Haitian Creole, Creole (French)

 Message 2 of 31
15 December 2014 at 12:08am | IP Logged 
As we bid adieu to 2014 and will soon welcome the new year, 2015, it's time to look back on some of the films/tv series we've watched in the past year and share with the forum what you enjoyed about them or what you didn't like and why.

What do you plan on watching and why? Is there a particular film or series that has made a deep impression? This is the place to talk about it, in any language you want. Just remember to provide a translation or a synopsis of the main points in English so that everyone can benefit from your post. Or, you can just write in English if you want. It's time to share and discuss the films/series you are watching in your TL's with the whole forum.

Edited by iguanamon on 15 December 2014 at 1:11am

1 person has voted this message useful

Senior Member
United States
Joined 4474 days ago

1134 posts - 1865 votes 
Speaks: English*, German, Yiddish
Studies: Modern Hebrew, French, Dutch, Italian, Russian

 Message 3 of 31
15 December 2014 at 4:26am | IP Logged 
I was excited to discover recently that the Israeli series Srugim was available in the U.S. on Hulu for free (with
English subtitles), and I watched all three seasons (well, almost) during a period where I was either sick or taking
care of sick family members for close to a week straight (and thus away from the office).

did a story earlier this year about why this is an awesome series, and I agree wholeheartedly. One note, however: if
you aren't well-versed in the laws and customs of Modern Orthodox (Dati) Jewish practice, and Israeli society
generally, you're going to miss a lot of what's going on. The show is still quite watchable, but the attention to
detail is really very good and deserves to be appreciated. I did notice the occasional slip-up though. For example, if
you watch the whole series, you might notice that the first time Amir is shown praying with tefillin, he's wearing
tefillin for a lefty, but then in a later episode he's a righty. (Nes gadol haya sham.)

I started watching the series to work on my Hebrew comprehension, and it worked quite well for that purpose. But
after a while I got really emotionally invested in these characters (I really wanted to smack Nati around for a while,
and Reut just makes me sad), and I was watching it just because I wanted to know what happens next.
1 person has voted this message useful

Via Diva
Senior Member
Russian Federation users can see my Skype Name
Joined 4020 days ago

1109 posts - 1427 votes 
Speaks: Russian*, English
Studies: German, Italian, French, Swedish, Esperanto, Czech, Greek

 Message 4 of 31
15 December 2014 at 7:06am | IP Logged 
If I try to describe everything I've seen in my TL's I'll wind up writing all day long. So I better do things step by
I've become subs need through series This was the tendency for a while, but there were two series which
gave me a clear transition between watching a dubbed version or the original one: 6 feet under and
Dexter. The first one isn't an example of a popular show, so as I went on from season 1 to season 5 I
wasn't always able to find anything decent (enough) in Russian. The quality of dubbing become purely awful
and I've switched to original. This wasn't something I could regret, in fact, it has only helped me enjoy the
show more. The plot isn't even close to anything standard to me: father of the messed-up family dies in a car
crash leaving his business (burial service) merely troubled. The oldest son has to move back with his mother,
brother and sister... and the story goes. Frankly, first seasons are better, the last one is particularly awful, but
I've compensated the weirdness of the plot with the transition to the original sound (+ Russian subs). Next
step was Dexter (kinda understandable if look at the actors), and this time I didn't even consider listening to
the dubbed version. This time the transition happened between Russian subs and English ones, thanks to the
length of the show and rather tricky plot (I only hate the last episodes, tbh). Unfortunately, I'm not always able
to keep up using English subs (for example, Sherlock is awfully hard for me to follow even with subs, judging
by how I've watched season 3), but I tend to use them nearly every time.
As I was writing I've remembered another case when I had to abandon dubbed version, and this was Ashes
to ashes
. Actually this could've happened even earlier with Life on Mars, the dubbing I've had was
terrible, voiced by two old man and woman, brrr, but I couldn't find the original, keeping bumping into rather
awful American version of Life on Mars. With its spin-off things went even worse, an amateur dubbing
and, by the season 3, total absence of dubbing. I used Russian subtitles and found it great, and, frankly, I can't
even remember why haven't I went on using them every time afterwards.
At least I tend to now.
All this happened more than 2 years ago, and I haven't rewatched anything of that ever except for Life on
since, but on account of Life on Mars and Ashes to ashes I can surely say that everyone who
likes English shows, actors, life, past, humour and drama both these series would be a gift. I haven't seen
Life on Mars in English yet, but since I know the plot I plan to rewatch it entirely in English without subs.
My awful listening comprehension stops me though...
1 person has voted this message useful

Senior Member
Joined 3885 days ago

490 posts - 1158 votes 
Speaks: Swedish*, English, French
Studies: Breton, Italian

 Message 5 of 31
15 December 2014 at 11:09am | IP Logged 
I didn't discover Un Village Français (trailer) this year, but it's some of the best television I've watched this year. The sixth season is amazing so far. For those of you not in the know, Un Village Français is a series focusing on a French town near the Swiss border from the day of the German occupation in 1940 until, so far, the liberation. For a war drama, I find it very nuanced. It's not as simple as Germans and collaborators are evil and the resistance is good, and there is a lot of realistic character motivation... someone who does good one moment may do something heinous the next, or the other way around. They're also worse than George R. R. Martin when it comes to killing off characters you've come to love. No one is safe.

What I did discover this year was Kaboul Kitchen (first season trailer | second season teaser). It quickly became one of my and my husband's favourite series. The main character is Jacky, an embittered former war correspondent who has decided to open a restaurant/night club in Kaboul for the expat crowd. They came to save the world, they end up partying, smoking weed, and skinny-dipping in the pool. It's gritty, it's dark, it's hilarious. But, beware, it's full of slightly off French idioms, played for comedy, that you really shouldn't imitate (« beau comme un avion », « la logistique de la langue française »). We're impatiently awaiting the next season (or rather, the next DVD since I don't actually have a TV and Canal+ doesn't do free streaming).

The series that has probably made the biggest impact on me linguistically this year is Buffy the Vampire Slayer. It's my favourite series of all-time and I've watched it far more times than I probably should admit to. So, when I had some down-time this autumn I started watching the French dub. Since I know the series like the back of my hand, it turned out I didn't have to focus much to follow the dialogue, even at a word-for-word comprehension. Because it takes no brainpower, I am able to watch it when I have no energy to read or watch new French material and that means I've been able to work through all seven seasons in a few weeks. I've gotten a LOT of hours of French watching in, when I otherwise wouldn't, I've enjoyed noting the little differences (in English, Kennedy tells Willow she'd "better not hog the covers" when they innocently need to share a bed, in French she warns Willow that she "sleeps in the nude"), and a huge number of French idioms that I've otherwise only known passively have been magically activated.
5 persons have voted this message useful

Senior Member
Joined 4424 days ago

178 posts - 354 votes 
Speaks: English*, French
Studies: Latin, German, Spanish, Japanese

 Message 6 of 31
15 December 2014 at 11:36am | IP Logged 
My favourite TL movies watched for the first time this year:

Ikiru (To Live) by Akira Kurosawa
I've had mixed reactions to Kurasawa movies, but this one really hit me on an
emotional level. A man who devotes his 'life' to working in a pointless bureaucracy
attempts to finally truly live after being diagnosed with cancer.

Lola Rennt ("Lola Runs", Run Lola Run) by Tom Tykwer
An extremely fun movie which I suppose everyone but me had already seen. You know that
moment when everything's on the line, you have one chance to succeed and no time
for careful consideration, only instinct, that's this movie. I think the official
translation of the title into English is an abomination. The original, descriptive
title is perfect (Lola does in fact run. A lot.) There's lots of repetition in
this movie, great for learners.

Incendies, by Denis Villeneuve, based on a play by Wajdi Mouawad
A mystery film. A Quebecoise women travels to a fictive Middle Eastern country (with
clear allusions to Lebanon) to fulfil a request given in her late mother's will that
she find her father (who she thought was dead) and brother (who she didn't know
existed). Exciting, heart wrenching, horrific, surprising, this movie is everything. A
lot of it's in Arabic so not the ideal movie for French learners.

Esperando la carroza, Directed by Alejandro Doria, written by Jacoo Langsner
A Hilarious Argentinian comedy about a bunch of siblings fighting over who should look
after their senile mother, who ends up going missing.
I love this bit.

Next year I'm hoping to get through all the TL movies I haven't seen from the
Sight and Sound 250.

Edited by AlexTG on 15 December 2014 at 11:49am

3 persons have voted this message useful

Senior Member
Joined 4803 days ago

365 posts - 559 votes 
Speaks: French*, English, Spanish, Dutch

 Message 7 of 31
15 December 2014 at 12:22pm | IP Logged 
It is no surprise to me that Sherlock is hard to follow. I only watched a few episodes and only dubbed in my native french. Even the other characters in the show don't often follow Sherlock easily.

I also like Dexter - and since he speaks a lot to himself therefore to the audience - it makes a great show for languages learners. I am not sure what last episodes do you hate, Via Diva ?
Here in Belgium as far as I know the seasons 7 and 8 have not yet been broadcasted by french speaking channels - I only watched a few episodes on the dutch speaking ones. So maybe you don't refer to the controversial turn at the end of season 7.

I am suspecting there is no way here to publish something with some kind of filter so that people who follow a show don't read about it before they watch it ?

I love the Dexter morning routine credits and since it is a lot about food - it makes a great link to my next post.

Any correction is welcome.
1 person has voted this message useful

Via Diva
Senior Member
Russian Federation users can see my Skype Name
Joined 4020 days ago

1109 posts - 1427 votes 
Speaks: Russian*, English
Studies: German, Italian, French, Swedish, Esperanto, Czech, Greek

 Message 8 of 31
15 December 2014 at 12:51pm | IP Logged 
Michel1020, I refer to the end of season 8, to me everything stands out of logic there, really.
Oh, and how could I forget to mention: any of my posts could be corrected, I even consider doubling them on
lang-8 to make fixing easier.

Edited by Via Diva on 15 December 2014 at 12:52pm

1 person has voted this message useful

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