Wednesday, 27 June 2007

Subtitles or dubbing?

Assuming you're not Italian, how do you prefer to watch Italian films. Dubbed into your native language or in Italian with subtitles? In the original mono or stereo mix or a new, multi-channel one that better shows off your home cinema set up? Or does it vary depending on the individual film and viewing context?

11 comments:

Marc said...

I don't care for DTS on these old movies. Give me the original mono and I'm good to go. Preferably in the language that most people spoke on set. Sometimes the leading actors were American, so the English dub would be better than an Italian one in such cases. Unless the English dub is really bad like some on Fulci's movies.

Tiffany said...

Subtitles (most of the time)
and mono.

:)

Anonymous said...

great blog... ill triple that, mono, original language. seems like most DTS, stereo, etc. are just hyped versions of what was a mono mix in the first place and more often then not there is not acces to multitrack masters for a proper stereo mix anyway. Just watched Bird With The Crystal Plumage last night, which unfortunately was overdubed. I find myself too distracted by overdubs, subtitles please!

herman said...

Prefer subtitles but take on board what marc pointed out about different languages spoken on set.

N. Kuiper said...

I prefer subtitles also, especially for the more serious films among the gialli, peplum and poliziesco. Horrors and actionfilms are just fine in English, as are some of the more corny gialli like Night/Evelyn/Grave or Bava's Delirium...

GialloRadio said...

I always listen in original language (when available). Most 5.1 or other tend to have a "processed" sound so I go with original.

Obitus said...

Subtitles and original track, no mather if it's italian or english (due to the english speaking actors on the set), but it must be the original one.

K H Brown said...

Some interesting points. What seems to be coming through from our admittedly small and self-selecting sample is that we prefer the original sound mix over the reworked one, and that having access to the Italian language version, whilst not necessarily a show-stopper, is a plus.

What got me thinking about these questions were the Bill Lustig interview where he seemed to indicate that providing the Italian language track was often not cost effective and whether there is / was a version of Suspiria out there that was faithful to the quad sound version, as a film where the new mixes are especially problematic for drowning out the aural clue.

Whiggles said...

I always go for the original mix, whether its mono, stereo or whatever. When it comes to the language, I rely on a combination of availability, common sense and what feel right. Many discs only feature the English track, so there's no choice to speak of. If there IS a choice, though, it really depends on which one "feels" the best, with the location and cast of characters playing a part as well. For example, I wouldn't watch What Have You Done to Solange?, A Lizard in a Woman's Skin or One on Top of the Other in anything but English, given that they take place in English-speaking locales, whereas I definitely wish I could experience the likes of Who Saw Her Die? and Don't Torture a Duckling in Italian (the lack of audio options on the DVDs prevent this, though). It gets a bit more complicated with the likes of The Red Queen Kills Seven Times (set in Germany) or Short Night of the Glass Dolls (set in the Czech Republic but featuring characters of various different nationalities, some of whom would presumably talk to each other in English), though.

Basically, whatever seems right at the time. :)

Walrus said...

I think that like most of us I prefer the original mix, but I like to have subtitles on even for the English audio (sometimes it give insights into the script). I have to say that while the poor dubs initially alienated me, I now consider them part of the kitsch/charm and it can add some levity to films that otherwise take themselves quite seriously(say, zombie films of the more tedious persuasion).

scott said...

subtitles!

point in hand, compare the region 1 and region 2 dvds of Franco's EUGENIE DE SADE - r1 is awful dubbing and r2 has subtitle option with French language. much better on the ears and atmopsheric, I think. there is some talk of Blue underground releasing a version of this with only the dub track. horrible.