ChinesePod Movie Madness

ChinesePod has recently been developing its “Extra” content. That refers to content that is not in a daily podcast lesson. One of the Extra features is one called Movie Madness, conceived by Dave Lancashire. The concept is this:

– You’re given an audio clip in Chinese.
– The clip comes from the Chinese dubbing of a well-known Hollywood movie.
– Based on the Chinese audio, guess what the movie is.

Here are the first five that we’ve recorded (each podcast is about 5 minutes long, even though the movie clips are much shorter):

Movie Madness

Movie Madness #1
Movie Madness #2
Movie Madness #3
Movie Madness #4
Movie Madness #5

This is actually harder than it sounds (maybe even slightly… oh, I don’t know… maddening??). The challenges are:

– It can be hard to find movies that are dubbed (especially movies that aren’t cartoons or that aren’t really old).
– The Chinese dubbing can fly by at incredible speeds, greatly reducing the chances of recognition even for really familiar scenes.
– Some really well-known movies don’t have any memorable lines.
– You pretty much have to take what you can get from your own Chinese DVD collection and what’s available in the shops around town.

More than just whining, I’m actually asking for help. If you’ve got audio movie clips from well-known movies dubbed in Chinese, send them in! (They’re pretty easy to record if your computer has a DVD-ROM drive and audio recording software like the free Audacity.)


John Pasden

John is a Shanghai-based linguist and entrepreneur, founder of AllSet Learning.


  1. Now this is a cool idea. 😉 So… is there anyone in Shanghai that doesn’t work for Praxis? I just found out John B. does as well.

  2. Actually, John B doesn’t… quite yet.

  3. 音弗丽娅 Says: June 27, 2007 at 9:23 pm

    I have a dubbed version of Titanic at home, I don’t know if that would be helpful. And as far as I can remember, Titanic had plenty of memorable lines. I’m not sure when you would need this by, I’m not going to be home (home home, parent’s home) until after the 4th.

  4. Fantastic. Don’t some copyright laws come into it though?

  5. I have the entire box set of a movie series, would that be useful? I can’t tell you which one, it’ll ruin the game!

  6. You rock! It’s…crazy…
    @max, no, i don’t think there’s copyright issues.

  7. 芦可。。。我是你爸爸!

    I was so disappointed that in Chinese, the line was entirely forgettable.

  8. And Vader’s voice was whiny.

  9. As we speak, I’m picking away at a wav file in Cool Edit, where can I send the finished files?

  10. John, I’ve sent you a file through . I hope you can use it.

  11. maxiewawa,

    Thanks for the file! I received it just fine.

    I’m not sure we can use it, though… Even with the big hint you gave with the filename, I couldn’t place those lines at all…

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