Resources for translators
- Screenplay formatting
- Marya Morevna fairy tale in English: version 1, version 2. See also: Mythology.
- Russian slang and curse words: http://www.veronikaweb.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=22&Itemid=48 (I'm not vouching for the rest of the site, it just came up in a search :-) ).
- Machine Translation: http://babelfish.yahoo.com/translate_txt
- Russian Online Translator's Dictionary: http://multitran.ru/c/m.exe?a=1
Translation Revision Notes from Terry Hancock (aka TJH aka Digitante)
I translated "ДВОР" as "INDUSTRIAL YARD", based on the description. It's not a perfect match, because it doesn't convey the idea of being enclosed on the sides by buildings. But a "COURT" is usually a sporting area or garden, not an industrial area like this. "LOADING DOCKS" might also work, except that no actual docks (raised concrete platforms for unloading trucks) are mentioned -- and those are usually paved with concrete, where this one is dirt.
- quadrangle, precinct, ward? --KonstantinDmitriev 05:53, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
- 'precinct' and 'ward' are definitely wrong -- those names for neighborhoods or sections of a city. 'quadrangle' is rare and used mainly to refer to academic campuses (usually not industrial, though occasionally 'quad' is used that way -- we could say "INDUSTRIAL QUAD", but it won't be much more clear). Anyway, I figure that as a direction it's not that important, since it won't be in the final film. Better to just explain how you want it to look (or draw a plan). Digitante 04:30, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
Some tough action descriptions here! I don't really understand the cabinet with the insulated tank that Baba-Yaga is interested in. I'm not quite sure how Ivan and Baba-Yaga are physically oriented right before their encounter (why does he need to push her to get away?).
- There was an paragraph skipped in the translation... http://morevnaproject.org/wiki/index.php5?title=Screenplay&diff=772&oldid=771 --KonstantinDmitriev 05:53, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
- Oops! Okay, thanks. I just cleaned that paragraph up and now it makes more sense. Digitante 04:32, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
Crossing the bridge
The word "БУЯН" in the scene description is auto-translated as "BRAWLER" (as in "a person who fights"?).
I have no idea what this means, and it doesn't seem to be necessary. Seems to be related to the BRIDGE or the HIGHWAY. Is it a particular type of road or something? The MULTITRAN Russian dictionary lists a whole lot of meanings for БУЯН.
Perhaps "БУЯН" is the name of the island?
- Right, "БУЯН" is the name of the island and the best is just to transliterate it - "Buyan". --KonstantinDmitriev
- Okay, that makes sense, will fix Digitante 02:01, 31 January 2010 (UTC)
The soldiers are described as having "machines/cars" with armaments. This could be ordinary cars rigged with weapons, or it could be tanks and jeeps and stuff. I'm guessing the latter was intended. I used "military vehicles".
- Yes, here's a "military vechicles". --KonstantinDmitriev
The Man in Black
I'm fixing the screenplay to make it readable, and transferring some of the discussion to here:
[below a strand of hair / from under his hair / ?].
- [I'm unsure which version is better, because I can't catch the difference --KonstantinDmitriev 09:05, 6 March 2010 (UTC)]
- The issue is that neither makes much sense (since your eyes are always below your hair). I guess you mean that his hair is blocking his eyes somewhat -- I'll note it that way.
- Yeah hair strand partially blocks his eyes as he looking frowningly. --KonstantinDmitriev 04:08, 13 March 2010 (UTC)
[The key word here is "ali". It's old-Russain equivalent for "or" (English). So the literal meaning here is "Are you just rude or your sight is completely narrowed?" Here's dual meaning for "narrow sight" - as quality of eyes and as quality of mind (like "narrowminded"). --KonstantinDmitriev 09:05, 6 March 2010 (UTC)]
- You have an archaic word for "or"? I wonder how that happened. Anyway, I think I've got it now. I've substituted "dim" for "narrow" -- the literal image is a little different, but I think the symbolic meaning is closer (and a little more poetic -- seeing "dimly" from the mortal into the immortal realm is an image used a few times in literature. There's a passage in the King James translation of the Bible about seeing "darkly" versus seeing "face-to-face" that comes to mind.).
- Of course, my understanding is that normal, living people can't really see MAN-IN-BLACK -- only people who are on the verge of death (or undead, like Ivan).
[I know the following is a total hash. I haven't figured out what it means exactly. I understand that the MAN-IN-BLACK is supposed to be carving a wooden stake, to kill the "vampire" undead Ivan, but the actual staging is very confusing to me. Please help! Digitante 17:02, 5 March 2010 (UTC)]
- [Yes, I've put a lot of colloquial words to improve the impression - I sure it's very hard to understand.]
- Your explanation makes sense to me. I've just cleaned it up.
- [Ivan experience such nasty hallucinations as a first effects of turning into monster. He's "not completely returned back" and his choice leads to his degradation as a human. --KonstantinDmitriev 09:05, 6 March 2010 (UTC) ]
- [Byaka]-[byaka]! Japanese バカバカ "baka-baka" = "very stupid"? So Ivan is being stupid in some way?
- Okay, noted for future reference (I guess I'm going to have to take a Russian class someday soon). And here I thought I was being so clever, catching you speaking "otaku". :-)
[I'm not sure on the best idiomatic way to translate "your sisters are gold". I think he means to say they are "very good" or "very skilled" or possibly "very well intentioned". "Pure gold" -- as in "absolutely perfect" or "very very good" is one idiomatic possibility Digitante 17:02, 5 March 2010 (UTC)]
- [Yes, that's exactly the meaning. I want "gold" word here, because that's good correlate with paragraph describing sisters appear against the golden sky. --KonstantinDmitriev 09:05, 6 March 2010 (UTC)]
- I didn't want to clutter up the script with this, but here's why I changed it to "pure gold". Using that expression is not quite grammatically correct ("purely golden" would be more 'correct'), but is common usage. It's more objectionable to say "are gold" -- it draws attention to the fact that you're not saying "are golden".
- I don't want to say "are golden", because that expression has become diluted by California slang. It means something like "absolutely a correct fit" or just "cool". As in "We're golden" -- which means "we've come to an agreement" or "we've met the minimum standards", etc. It's sort of similar to what happened to "awesome" over the last few decades -- where it went from literally "something that inspires awe" to yet another everday expression of satisfaction, along with "cool", "neat", "hot", etc.
- Having Death speak in this California dialect would really make his character seem trivial (because we all know that people from California are trivial and shallow. ;-P ).
- Of course, I flipped the order of the phrase on the last sentence to the more usual order. I gather that the sisters literally _can't_ see MAN-IN-BLACK because they are not on the verge of death (or at least MAN-IN-BLACK thinks this). However, Ivan has a lot of faith in his sisters' supernatural abilities, so he might think they could.
I reverted this line:
- Didn't you come here to die?
[Alternatively: "Weren't you planning to die here?". The meaning is that Ivan, in his depression has sought out some lonely place precisely because he is seeking death, whether he realizes that or not. Of course, he found Death instead, who talks hims out of it. :-) Digitante 21:56, 11 March 2010 (UTC)] I think this is much more idiomatically correct, unless I misunderstood the meaning somehow.
- Yes, that's exactly the meaning of the scene. And if this line reflects it better I have nothing to argue. ^__^ --KonstantinDmitriev 04:08, 13 March 2010 (UTC)
[Dual meaning: "help to die" or "help with troubles" --KonstantinDmitriev 09:05, 6 March 2010 (UTC)]
- Yes. The dual meaning is retained! This is one of the scarier lines in the story.
[In the earlier version of the script, Ivan has one more line, which I'll translate as "With that?!", but it's missing from the newer Russian script Digitante 17:02, 5 March 2010 (UTC)]
- Well, just look at you!. Die now, you evil, filthy thing!
- This could obviously be translated a lot of ways. I had retained the word "unclean" in my first pass, because that specifically refers to something ritually or spiritually bad. It's a little archaic or formal, but fits. "Dirty" could work, but has a few too many meanings. "Foul" would be fine, but maybe the rhythm doesn't fit so well. I used "filthy" which is maybe a little stronger than "dirty".
- Then maybe "unclean" will fit well here too. --KonstantinDmitriev 04:08, 13 March 2010 (UTC)
- Now I know what it is -- to keep standing tall, when all the foundations have fallen.
- "...to stand tall, while you supposed to [fall/lay] down."
- "...to stand, while you have all reasons to lay down [and give up]."
Though "when all the foundations have fallen" is not the exact translation, but have the same meaning and I like it. --KonstantinDmitriev 09:05, 6 March 2010 (UTC)]
Actually, as I recall, "when all the foundations have fallen" is almost exactly what came out of Babelfish. I don't like "standing tall" because it's kind of a cliche. Also, it's not really something you say about yourself, unless you're really arrogant, and I don't think that's true to Ivan's feelings right now. My sense is that the meaning here is not of him rising up, but of him remaining while all his emotional support system collapses away from him. He's being forced to stand on his own.
- Yes, not rising up. The closer meaning is "keep standing emotionally, spiritually while he lost everything, nothing left to hope".
some clues to Marya Morevna's image
bylina/epical heroine bylina = Russian heroic epic
"korolevna" = king's daughter, princess not a "queen" as it implies a king husband, which is not true
the key feature "tsar-devitsa":
1. if to take "tsar" for "have features of a male monarch: firmness, wisdom, etc."
- the girl king (http://www.amazon.com/Royal-Diaries-Kristina-Girl-King/dp/0439249767)
- the girl tsar
- maiden/maid monarch
2. some etymologists suppose "tsar-" as an epithet "the best ever possible"
- final fantasy : )
- ultimate beauty
just a thought:
- pagan/heathen goddess
- born human goddess
still thinking over the right words :-)
oh, Death, my sis (c) Rada
- mechanic/artificer/motorcar mechanic
- priestess sounds great. the only thing: the first meaning in a dictionary is "a priest's wife" - not the meaning we need. Oxford dictionary reads: a female priest of a non-Christian religion - much better. but in this case we need to be sure she doesn't wear a "Christian religion" robe.
- hun sounds boring imho
- "Priest's wife" is new to me! I've never ever heard that definition for "priestess" (Also, my dictionary doesn't include this meaning), especially since priests traditionally don't marry! "Nuns" don't marry either, so that's all pretty weird. "Priestess" is a female priest.
- Traditionally, though, Catholics only accepted men as priests. Protestants don't call their ministers "priests" (they call them "reverend", "minister", or "preacher"). So "priestess" came to refer only to religions in matriarchal "pagan" religions. Recently, of course, Episcopalians have allowed women to become "priests", but they call them "priests", just like the men. So "priestess" suggests a pagan religion.
- "Priestess" is also, of course, an anime archetype, where the "priestess" is usually Shinto (but sometimes some unspecified religion). My recommendation is to stick with "priestess", because it works as well as any other word is going to. The main oddity is that she is shown using a cross as a religious icon in magic rituals. I've seen Japanese anime in which a Western "nun" is given these characteristics, but of course, that's just Japanese writers not knowing about Western culture. Probably not something to copy!
- Answering this in a definite way is a "world building" exercise -- you have to decide how "priestesses" fit into your cyberpunk/mecha/nanotech universe. We're obviously in some kind of fantasy world, so we're free to re-write these rules if we want. Digitante 01:21, 12 February 2010 (UTC)
- I'm for "priestess" too. --KonstantinDmitriev 08:12, 19 March 2010 (UTC)
I think that the English translation should flip the sisters' names to: MECHANIC-SISTER, DOCTOR-SISTER, PRIESTESS-SISTER. The names have looked weird to me, but I only just thought of this. This way the professions are just adjectives -- "the sister who is a mechanic", etc. Probably do the same with their husbands "BUSINESSMAN-HUSBAND", etc. Digitante 01:21, 12 February 2010 (UTC)
Unless, of course, we're going to give them actual names. In the first fairy tale version you linked to, they do have names. I didn't like that one of them was "Marya" though ("never use the same name twice in a screenplay"). :-) Digitante 01:29, 12 February 2010 (UTC)
- I thought about actual names and had same concerns as you. Finally I end up never referencing them by name. That's OK. (BTW, somewhere I saw a version of Morevna fairy-tale using name "Yana" instead of duplicated name "Maria"). --KonstantinDmitriev 08:12, 19 March 2010 (UTC)