Art of the Title Interview

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What do you think of podcasts and radio, Peter? Do you think the imaginative experiences those provide are necessarily less rich than visual media?

illegal economic migration (Tracer Hand), Wednesday, 18 October 2017 09:22 (four years ago) link

I love a good podcast or radio play. I greatly enjoyed this recent one on BBC4.

It conveys a situation and the internal workings of vivid characters without relying on exposition. You get everything through subtext, innuendo and interpretation.

The point is not that an audio track description of a film is worthless because it is text based. It is that a good film is one which has been carefully crafted to be an experience of visual perception. The sensation of sight is comprised of many specific skills one acquires to derive meaning.

A good radio play has been crafted to trigger our brain's capacity to derive meaning through auditory cues. Not just the words, but the pauses, inflections, changes in volume, tonal shifts that make up a good performance.

Let me know if there is something that is still not clear. The question is odd. A painting needs to be seen. A symphony needs to be heard. A verbal description of either is not a substitute for the experience.

Peter Chung, Wednesday, 18 October 2017 09:50 (four years ago) link

Catch it soon, only 9 days left to listen.

Peter Chung, Wednesday, 18 October 2017 09:55 (four years ago) link

I get that. You seemed close to saying that audio storytelling is more information-based and so less valuable or rich but I can see now you weren't saying that. (Good!)

illegal economic migration (Tracer Hand), Wednesday, 18 October 2017 09:57 (four years ago) link

And thanks for the link!

illegal economic migration (Tracer Hand), Wednesday, 18 October 2017 09:57 (four years ago) link

What are your thoughts on foreign language dub tracks?

Philip Nunez, Wednesday, 18 October 2017 17:39 (four years ago) link

It depends.

Peter Chung, Thursday, 19 October 2017 08:16 (three years ago) link

Philip, what are your thoughts on foreign language dub tracks?

Peter Chung, Thursday, 19 October 2017 08:18 (three years ago) link

I think watching dubs makes for a completely different (and sometimes better!) movie for me, but therefore I'd also assign a bit more credibility to the thoughts of a blind movie reviewer over one who has seen a dub (or is watching with translated subtitles because he isn't a native speaker).

Philip Nunez, Thursday, 19 October 2017 19:44 (three years ago) link

For animated films I usually prefer dubs. Hardline sub people who think you need the most "authentic" experience are silly, for several reasons.

1) It's not an "authentic experience", you're reading text at the bottom of the screen and taking your eyes away from the rest of the visual information. In some movies this is worse than in others.

2) It relies on a belief that the creator(s) always do a good job with voice casting and directing. This often isn't the case. I don't need to hear bad Japanese voice acting while missing 60% of the animation to get a good experience from the work.

It's especially funny when people take this stance with video games, which usually have awful voice acting anyway as well as awful stories.

J.P. McDevitt, Sunday, 22 October 2017 23:02 (three years ago) link

I think it really does depend on the film. I'd rather watch Bloodlust in English than in Japanese, but something like The Tale Of Princess Kaguya would be jarring to watch in English.

Having said that, I really don't care for most redubbing of films, and usually avoid dubs. I've been watching subtitled movies since I could read; I don't find subs distracting or overly-mediating. I can see why someone else might experience subtitles as visual pollution, but to me it's just a natural part of watching foreign films.

And live-action movies are almost always much better subbed than dubbed. I can't think of one that was improved by being redubbed in another language, except maybe for comedy purposes.

Blair Gilbreath, Monday, 23 October 2017 21:04 (three years ago) link

With subtitles, I very much feel I'm at the mercy of the translator. The English subtitles for Okja, for example, has a few deliberately mistranslated passages, perhaps to drive home that point.

Philip Nunez, Monday, 23 October 2017 22:32 (three years ago) link

ten months pass...

Finally got around to reading this thing, very interesting. Thanks for doing this interview, Peter.

Nhex, Sunday, 16 September 2018 06:40 (three years ago) link

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