A Trusted Friend in a Complicated World

21 Movies That Have Hilarious Titles in Other Countries

When American movies travel abroad, their titles can get a little lost in translation. Check out what your favorite films are called overseas!

1 / 21
Peter Mayhew, Anthony Daniels, Carrie Fisher, Harrison Ford

The War of the Stars

That’s the French title for Star Wars; in Spanish, it was The War of the Galaxies. Makes sense! The title isn’t the only thing that got a major switch in translation. In Germany, the Millennium Falcon became the “Speeding Falcon.” In France, Han Solo was instead Yan Solo and his Wookie sidekick got the name “Chico.” And their ship? The “Millennium Condor.” The Force definitely wasn’t with those translators—just like with these hilarious working titles used for the Star Wars movies.

2 / 21
Heath Ledger
Warner Bros/Shutterstock

Knight of the Night

It kind of makes sense…? In Spain, that was the title of The Dark Knight. You may have thought that the Batman movie got its title from its brooding protagonist and gloomy cityscapes, but in Spain, they were much more literal—it’s because so many scenes take place at night!

3 / 21
Leslie Jones, Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Kate Mckinnon

Super Power Dare Die Team

You’re not going to be able to guess this one: Super Power Dare Die Team would have been the Chinese title for the Ghostbusters reboot starring Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, and Leslie Jones—had it ever been released. Guidelines in China forbid movies that “promote cults or superstition,” though the country’s censors said the official reason was that it wouldn’t appeal to the Chinese audience. Hopefully, that doesn’t apply to any other classic ’80s movies you really should have seen by now.

4 / 21
Keiko Star of Free Willy Movie. Orca / Killer Whale (orcinus Orca). Vestmannaeyjar, Westman Islands), Iceland.
Ingrid Visser/Shutterstock

A Very Powerful Whale Runs to Heaven

The beloved tearjerker Free Willy is known for its happy ending. The Chinese saw things differently, giving the movie the above title instead. Then again, Willy did jump (not run) to the metaphorical heaven of the open ocean.

5 / 21
The Sixth Sense, Haley Joel Osment

He’s a Ghost!

The Sixth Sense has one of the greatest twist endings of all time—unless you happen to live in China. Although most audiences were stunned by the movie’s revelation in the final minutes, Chinese viewers were already clued in by the title. We hope the same didn’t apply to these other movies with twist endings you won’t see coming.

6 / 21
21 Movies That Have Hilarious Titles in Other Countries
Peter Mountain/Warner Bros./Kobal/Shutterstock

The Boy Drowned in the Chocolate Sauce

Denmark gave Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory quite the dark (but also kind of hilarious) spin! While greedy Augustus Gloop does take a harrowing swim in a chocolate river, his fate is not quite that grim. While many countries kept the original title of the Gene Wilder classic, and others tweaked it to Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (the title of the Roald Dahl novel it’s based on), Portugal changed it to “Charlie’s Wonderful Story” and Spain picked “A Fantasy World.” But Denmark’s interpretation definitely takes the (chocolate) cake.

7 / 21
Samuel L. Jackson, Bruce Willis
Barry Wetcher/Shutterstock

Die Hard: Mega Hard

Let’s face it: It’s only a matter of time before Hollywood co-opts this Danish title for Die Hard with a Vengeance. In Denmark, mega means huge, but it also signifies a million. Those Danes are intense. “Die Hard: A million times hard.”

8 / 21
Elizabeth Shue, Nicolas Cage
Suzanne Hanover/Shutterstock

I’m Drunk and You’re a Prostitute

The Japanese get points for brutal honesty with this title for Leaving Las Vegas. Nicolas Cage won the Best Actor Oscar for his devastating performance, and his co-star Elisabeth Shue was riveting in her role in the acclaimed drama. Nonetheless, he was portraying a drunk, and she did play a prostitute. (The title also happens to be a paraphrase of one of Cage’s lines from the movie.)

9 / 21
21 Movies That Have Hilarious Titles in Other Countries
Sony Pictures Animation/Kobal/Shutterstock

It’s Raining Falafel

Israel, where meatballs are not a popular dish, clearly wanted to make Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs more appealing to its audience. So the Hebrew title swapped out the meatballs for falafel, a more recognizable food. In the film itself, though, the animated meatballs were not altered.

10 / 21
Step Up, Channing Tatum, Jenna Dewan

Sexy Dance

In the first Step Up film, Channing Tatum and Jenna Dewan come from opposite sides of the tracks. But they’re able to bond through dance and it’s beautiful. Whoever titled the French version of the film simply cut to the chase and called it “Sexy Dance.” That pretty much nails it! If you love Step Up, make sure you’ve also seen the best dance movies of all time.

11 / 21
Grease - 035


Yep: Grease. Everyone loves Olivia Newton-John as Sandy during her epic transformation in this iconic musical from 1978. John Travolta as Danny is the one that she wants, even though he’s a tough guy greaser. In 1950s slang, that means he slicks his hair back and has a bad reputation. But for the movie release in Argentina, the title was simply Vaseline. Talk about lost in translation…

12 / 21
Lindsay Lohan
Lorey Sebastian/Shutterstock

A Twin Seldom Comes Alone

This German designation for the reboot of The Parent Trap is quite… literal. It was Lindsay Lohan’s first starring turn—the 1961 original starred Hayley Mills. The story is about twin sisters, raised apart by feuding parents, who decide to reunite the family; the twins are played by a single actress in both film versions. Maybe that’s why the German title-writer decided to get philosophical with this title. If you’re equally as much of a movie buff, you probably already memorized the best one-liners everyone wants to say over and over.

13 / 21
21 Movies That Have Hilarious Titles in Other Countries
Mirage Enterprises/Kobal/Shutterstock

My Boyfriend is a Psycho

The point of Silver Linings Playbook is that they’re both a little crazy, Russia! However, we can’t blame translators for changing this title. Since the English phrase “every cloud has a silver lining” doesn’t really have foreign equivalents, other countries had to seek an alternative name for the film. France called the comedy “Happiness Therapy,” and Lithuania went with “The Story of the Optimists.” And finally, since a “playbook” is an American football term, the United Kingdom dropped that part and just went with “Silver Linings.” Seems reasonable.

14 / 21

The Teeth of the Sea

The marketing of the blockbuster Jaws was brilliant for its minimalist simplicity. With one word, audiences got a taste of the horror to come. The visual of the iconic movie poster—a woman swimming above a massive open-mouthed shark—gave the single word “Jaws” its power and impact. In France, the effect was a bit muted: The Teeth of the Sea sounds much less scary and a lot more confusing.

15 / 21
Home Alone, Macaulay Culkin, Daniel Stern, Joe Pesci

Mom, I Missed the Plane

The French must have decided that every parent’s worst nightmare—leaving a child behind—is actually the child’s fault. That can be the only explanation for altering John Hughes’ Home Alone to the above title. That’s right: Kevin missed the plane, and he brought all this home alone burglar mayhem stuff on himself! No one can deny that Home Alone is iconic.

16 / 21
Henry Winkler, Adam Sadler

Dimwit Surges Forth

Adam Sandler comedies are not usually known for their inspirational, overcoming-the-odds tales of high stakes struggle and survival. So it’s not clear why The Waterboy was titled Dimwit Surges Forth in Thailand. However, the dimwit’s rinky-dink team does, ahem, surge forth in the end.

17 / 21
21 Movies That Have Hilarious Titles in Other Countries

The Incredible Journey in a Crazy Plane

This was Germany’s interpretation of the madcap-comedy-slash-disaster-movie-spoof Airplane! Italy also went literal, calling it “The Craziest Plane in the World.” Several other countries, including Croatia, France, and Peru, also lengthened America’s one-word title, calling it some variation of “Is There a Pilot on This Plane?” But the funniest title of all might be the working title used for the film during production: “Kentucky Fried Airplane.”

18 / 21

Big Liar

Anthony Hopkins gave an acclaimed performance as the disgraced president in the biopic Nixon, a drama that humanized the flawed American leader. Oliver Stone’s three-hour epic intended to depict the complexity of Nixon’s impact on history. In China, the film was released with the title Big Liar. Why mince words?

19 / 21
Inside Out

Fantastic Emotional Turmoil

The beloved Pixar film Inside Out told a complicated emotional tale to child and adult audiences alike. However, multiple countries struggled with a quick, clear title for this movie: In China, the movie was called The Great Team Inside the Head. Russia went with Jigsaw. Vietnam chose The Puzzle Emotions. But Thailand may have taken the day by dubbing it Fantastic Emotional Turmoil. That works! Cinema fans, you won’t want to miss the 25 most famous movie quotes of all time.

20 / 21
21 Movies That Have Hilarious Titles in Other Countries
Warner Bros. Pictures/Kobal/Shutterstock

Honey, Wait, I’m On My Way

To be fair to the Slovenian translators, that is an accurate summation of the road trip buddy comedy Due Date. Robert Downey Jr. must take a cross-country trip, with Zach Galifianakis as his wacky travel companion, to arrive home in time for the birth of his baby. Unlike Slovenia, some other countries took the American route, working the pregnancy into the title. In Portugal, the film was called “A Childbirth Trip.” Perhaps most hilarious of all, the movie’s Polish title translates to “Before the Water Goes.”

21 / 21
21 Movies That Have Hilarious Titles in Other Countries

Grandpa Carl’s Flying House

Most countries kept the simplicity of the title of Pixar’s Up. Argentina chose “Up: An Adventure Up High” and the Czech Republic chose “To the Skies.” Japan, however? Not so much. They chose “Grandpa Carl’s Flying House.” While that might sound like a comically literal summation of the film, it’s actually somewhat inaccurate—a pivotal detail of Up is the fact that Carl is childless, and therefore not a grandpa. Though we suppose this is a more tactful title than “Grumpy Old Guy Carl’s Flying House.” But the cinema trivia doesn’t end there—read up on more surprising and funny movie trivia you never knew.

Molly Pennington, PhD
Molly is a writer and collage artist with a PhD in film and cultural studies from the University of Pittsburgh. Her professional astrology services and artwork are available at Baroque Moon Astrology. She covers the zodiac, books, movies, TV and culture for Reader’s Digest, and loves to talk about all the ways we make meaning.