Post your favourite Japanese translation of English-language album or movie titles

In the past, some English-language album titles were translated into Japanese. For movies, this practice continues to this day.

Probably my favourite at the moment is the excellent album that has a pretty boring title in English: Toto IV (featuring “Rosanna” and “Africa”). In Japanese, the album is called something like Holy Sword:


Another favourite: Kiss’s 1983 album and song Lick It Up is translated to 「地獄の回想」. Hey, I’m not a Japanese language expert but I’m pretty sure that when Gene Simmons writes a song with the chorus of “Lick it up, lick it up, ooh ooh ooh”, he’s not talking about remembrance of hell :rofl:


This one isn’t a literal translation and I think works well. The Clint Eastwood western For a Few Dollars More is 夕陽のガンマン.


That’s a good one. I think I posted this a while back:


Can I post my least favorite?


Lovers’ Hunch/Premonition? :face_with_raised_eyebrow:


Another one I remember seeing from a Japan Today article is the Japanese title for the James Bond movie You Only Live Twice: 007は二度死ぬ. Clearly means the same thing… :joy::joy::joy:



These Japanese translations are used for marketing purposes. The potential audience is supposed to be reminded of an earlier movie with a similar title. The prefix 「夕陽の~」 is often used for spaghetti westerns. For example A Pistol for Ringo (「夕陽の用心棒」/Night Bodyguard) and Duck, You Sucker (「夕陽のギャングたち」/Night Gang).

Meanwhile, the prefix 「恋人たちの~」 is used for romantic comedies. Pretty in Pink is 「 プリティ・イン・ピンク/恋人たちの街角」 (Lovers’ Corner) and Mariah’s holiday classic “All I Want for Christmas is You” is 「 恋人たちのクリスマス」 (Lovers’ Christmas).


Yeah I noticed that Jisho had a couple more movie title references that had that same prefix. Like Water for Elephants was 恋人たちのパレード

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Found this link.

It has some pretty amusing ones like this:

Napoleon Dynamite is the Bus Man. :rofl:


To be fair, I don’t know if any Japanese person would watch it if the title had been 「ナポレオン・ダイナマイト」.

In some cases, I do wish they had translated the title to Japanese instead of just writing it in katakana. 「ラブ・アクチュアリー」 makes me shudder.


That Being John Malkovich translation is truly unfortunate. :open_mouth:


This is our favorite, yet strange movie title translation. And it kind of makes sense…the cars are zipping around at “wild speeds.” Each movie in the Fast and Furious franchise comes with an equally awesome Japanese title. Here they are in order:

The Fast and the Furious Wild Speed
2 Fast 2 Furious Wild Speed X2
The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift Wild Speed X3 TOKYO DRIFT
Fast & Furious Wild Speed MAX
Fast Five Wild Speed MEGA MAX
Fast & Furious 6 Wild Speed EURO MISSION

We like Wild Speed MEGA MAX the best. Which one’s your favorite?

This one had me laughing pretty hard, too.

But the funny part is there’s nothing about a bus that has anything to do with the movie plot other than the fact that as a student the main character rides a bus to school. They took one of the least important details of the story and made that the title. :rofl:


So how about practicing our Japanese with a song:


The Japanese version there looks like it’s trying to be a reference to 電車男.


In general, 「地獄」 and 「悪魔」 are very popular words for various metal/rock albums and songs.


  • Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap is 「悪事と地獄」 (Evil Deeds and Hell)
  • Highway to Hell is 「地獄のハイウェイ」 (this one is a bit obvious I guess)
  • For Those About to Rock (We Salute You) is 「 悪魔の招待状」 (Devil’s Invitation)
  • Black Ice is 「悪魔の氷」 (Devil’s Ice)


  • Kiss (debut album) is 「地獄からの使者」 (Hell’s Emissary)
  • Hotter Than Hell is 「地獄のさけび」 (Cry from Hell)
  • Dressed to Kill is 「地獄への接吻」 (Kiss from Hell)
  • Destroyer is 「地獄の軍団」 (Hell’s Army)
  • Rock and Roll Over is 「地獄のロックファイアー」 (Hell’s Rock Fire)
  • Dynasty is 「地獄からの脱出」 (Escape from Hell)
  • Lick It Up is 「地獄の回想」 (Remembrance of Hell)

Meanwhile Scorpions are stuck with the 「蠍団」 titles for their first 5 albums (and this word made a comeback in 2004).

  • Lonesome Crow is 「恐怖の蠍団」 (Scary Scorpions)
  • Fly to the Rainbow is 「電撃の蠍団」 (Scorpions’ Electric Shock)
  • In Trance is 「復讐の蠍団」 (Scorpions’ Revenge)
  • Virgin Killer is 「狂熱の蠍団」 (Scorpions’ Passion)
  • Taken by Force is 「暴虐の蠍団」 (Scorpions’ Tyranny)

OK, I kind of love this, because for some reason I never really thought about albums (specifically albums, I know this happens with songs every so often) getting their titles translated, even though there’s no inherent reason why music would go exempt when so many other media don’t. Most of the time anyway (glares at ラブ・アクチュアリー). Is it the way we (apparently) don’t get much music in other languages over here? Is it down to a more-than-tiny pinch of Anglocentric thinking? Are these two questions actually the same? Goodness knows.

In any case, I’m interested into looking into this. Though it may take me a while to narrow it down, I’ve found a pile of fascinating ones already and I’ve barely started.

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Iron Maiden:

  • Iron Maiden (debut album) = 鋼鉄の処女 (Steel Maiden)
  • The Number of the Beast = 魔力の刻印 (Magic Seal)
  • Piece of Mind = 頭脳改革 (Mind Reform)
  • Seventh Son of a Seventh Son = 第七の予言 (Seventh Sign)

¡Three Amigos! in Japan is “Cactus Brothers”


I just started looking into the WK forums today.

I’m extremely happy I did, cause “Captain Supermarket” and “Cactus Brothers” are so freaking good.

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