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22 April 2012 @ 04:43 pm
It's time to play the music...  
I finally watched the new Muppet movie last night with my Mum. My cheeks hurt by the end from smiling so much. It was just the loveliest, happiest thing!

I'm a bit too young for the original Muppet show and it's reruns, but I remember watching Muppet Babies and being allowed to stay up late on Friday nights to watch Muppets Tonight.

Anyway, my first instinct when watching anything with singing is to see how it's translated into French. Because I'm weird like that. So I back-translated the French version of "The Rainbow Connection". Because I'm weird like that.

The second verse is vaguely disturbing in French, but the third verse is just gorgeous.

You can listen and see Kermit singing it here.

"L'arc-En-Ciel" (The Rainbow)

On voit tant de chansons,
sur les arc en ciels
Et quel en est la raison ?
Ce n’est qu’une vision,
ce n’est qu’une illusion.
Ou peut-être un cadeau du ciel.
C’est le tableau d’un génie de la couleur.
J’ignore quel en est l’auteur.
Un jour l'arc-en-ciel dévoil'ra ses merveilles
Aux amants, aux rêveurs et moi

You can find so many songs about rainbows
And what's the point of them?
It's only a vision
It's only an illusion
Or maybe a gift from Heaven
It's a picture by a genius with colours
I don't know who is the author
One day the rainbow will unveil its wonders
To the lovers, the dreamers and me

On dit : « fais vite un vœu
Il sera exaucé
Par l'étoile du matin
Car quelqu'un dans les cieux
Pense à toi de très loin
Et connaît tout de toi »
C'est vraiment troublant de savoir que là-bas
Quelqu'un me comprend et me voit
Un jour l'arc-en-ciel dévoil'ra ses merveilles
Aux amants, aux rêveurs et moi

They say "quickly make a wish
It will be granted
By the morning star
For someone in the skies
Thinks of you from far away
And knows everything about you"
It's really disconcerting to know that somewhere
Someone understands me and sees me
One day the rainbow will unveil its wonders
To the lovers, the dreamers and me

Nous verrons dans l'arc-en-ciel
Paraître le magicien du ciel

In the rainbow will shall see
The appearing of the wizard of the sky

Parfois en m'endormant j'ai entendu des voix
Ces voix murmuraient mon nom
C'était comme le chant
Le doux chant des sirènes
Comme une très ancienne chanson
J'ai entendu ces voix-là bien trop souvent
Pour penser que c'était le vent
Un jour l'arc-en-ciel dévoil'ra ses merveilles
Aux amants, aux rêveurs et moi

Sometimes while sleeping, I have heard voices
These voices would murmur my name
It was like singing
The sweet singing of mermaids
Like an very old song
I have heard these voices too many times
To think that it's only the wind

One day the rainbow will unveil its wonders
To the lovers, the dreamers and me
donutsweeperdonutsweeper on April 23rd, 2012 12:42 am (UTC)
oh NEAT. I think it's interesting how much they changed it and in some ways it's basically the same and other ways really, really different.
The Writer They Call Tay: Misc: fangirl (enchanted)awanderingbard on April 23rd, 2012 01:55 am (UTC)
Yeah, it seems to have a religious connotation with this version, which...I could see how you could make that connection with the original, but it's much more vague about it. There seems to be sort of two ideologies in translating, one is to make it as close to the original as possible, which the French-Canadian Disney dubs are fond of, to the point that sometimes they don't even rhyme. And the other is a broader 'general spirit' translation, which the European French dubs prefer. There's one song from Treasure Planet which bears no resemblance to the original in the Eu French dub, but at the same time makes you go 'oh, that fits really well'. I try for a mix of the two when I translate. I mostly stick to direct translations, unless it really doesn't make sense in English or the point is completely lost.

donutsweeperdonutsweeper on April 23rd, 2012 01:58 am (UTC)
My daughter and I listened together and we were talking about that- getting the main point to be the same but to have the words still able to flow and whatnot.

Are French-Canadian and European French very different overall?
The Writer They Call Tay: Dresden: Harry confusedawanderingbard on April 23rd, 2012 02:12 am (UTC)
I think there are some linguistic differences in Canadian French in terms of words. There are words that are uniquely French-Canadian. It's sort of like British English vs. American English. You could communicate easily, but there would be some ??? moments along the way. The accent is different, too. French-Canadians aim to say as many words as possible in as few syllables, while sounding as much like a duck as they can. They speak, very, very fast,

In terms of dubbing, the FC dubs are usually inferior, IMO. The translations are lazy and sometimes don't make sense or don't rhyme. The only FC dubs I prefer over the Euro ones are Hercules, Pochohantas, and Brother Bear. The FC dubs are a fairly new invention. The older Disney movies simply had the Euro French dubs, I think.
donutsweeperdonutsweeper on April 23rd, 2012 02:16 am (UTC)
Interesting! I had always assumed there were some differences between the two. I wonder if the inferiorness of the FC is due to an unfamiliarity to it. It's also a bit weird that they do they at all- there's only one English version, despite American, Australian and British English having significant differences and that there is also Canadian and other ones as well that are fairly close, but not exactly like one of the main three.
The Writer They Call Tay: DH: Random Happenstanceawanderingbard on April 23rd, 2012 02:28 am (UTC)
I've wondered that myself. There are Euro Portuguese and Brazilian Portugauese dubs, too, and Euro Spanish and South American Spanish dubs. I don't know why a they don't do multiple English ones. I can only assume that you don't have to translate something that's in it's original language to show it in a county that also speaks that language. Like, I'm sure films originally made in Euro French aren't dubbed into Canadian French.

If you ever want a lesson in Canadian French, you should try to get your hands on Bon Cop, Bad Cop. It is both educational and hilarious. But not really suitable for children, I guess. Which may defeat the purpose a little. :-)