Foreign Film Titles of On the Road

24 Sep

The other day I was editing a book that mentioned an 80s movie.  This particular book happened to have been translated into English, though, and the title of the movie was botched!  The tricky thing with translation work is that there are multiple words that mean similar things and sometimes the literal translation isn’t correct.

The film adaptation of Jack Kerouac’s On the Road debuted in Cannes back in May and, although it won’t make it to the US until December, it has gone on to show in some other countries around the world.  However, if you’re looking to find out if the film is showing in theatres in your country, you may find it listed with a translated title.

According to IMDB, these are the titles that On the Road is going by in other countries:

En el camino Spain (imdb display title)
Kelyje Lithuania (imdb display title)
Matkalla Finland (imdb display title)
Na Estrada Brazil (imdb display title)
Na ceste Czech Republic (imdb display title)
On the road – Unterwegs Germany (imdb display title)
Onderweg Netherlands
Pela Estrada Fora Portugal (imdb display title)
Sur la route France (imdb display title)
W drodze Poland (imdb display title)

Some of these, for example the French and Spanish, are literal translations, but it doesn’t appear that all of them are.  I believe “Matkalla” is the Finnish word for “trips.”  The Polish title could also translate as “In Transit.”

If you speak any of these languages, let us know if they’re exact translations.


2 Responses to “Foreign Film Titles of On the Road”

  1. Ron Fischman September 24, 2012 at 8:09 am #

    Love the Jarritos ad. Not much text, though. Overall, a good piece of insight.

    • Stephanie Nikolopoulos September 28, 2012 at 1:12 pm #

      The main takeaway is that just because the film will be titled “On the Road” in the States doesn’t mean it will have the exact same title in other countries, and it’s interesting to consider how translation impacts perception and marketability.

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