Six subtitled films

In addition to writing materials and teaching, some of you may already be familiar with my subtitling work. Around a year or so ago I discovered Overstream, a great site which allows you to add subtitles to any video you want. Of course, there are good pedagogical uses you could put this to. You could also use this medium to create funny little videos about what goes on in English language teaching and the ELT blogosphere. Here then, are my six subtitled “masterpieces” as one kind critic called them. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Settle down with some colleagues, grab a cup of tea and enjoy! Curtain up…

You are probably wondering what the football uniforms have to do with Dogme…


  • Based on: Any Given Sunday (German dubbed)
  • The context: This was my debut tribute to Scott Thornbury and Dogme methodology. Someone told me they used this video as an introduction to dogme in a workshop, which I loved! Here Al Pacino plays Thornbury, giving a dogme class to a group of football players.

Click here to see the film.

In 2010, a young DOS went to a conference on a battleship...


  • Based on: Yamoto (Japanese film)
  • The context: In early 2010, International House held its annual DOS conference on board HMS Belfast, a warship docked in London. This was just too good a chance to pass up for a bit of satire…

Click here to see the film.

I am Guardian of the Tweets...


  • Based on: The Seventh Seal (Swedish film)
  • The context: Gavin Dudeney wrote a blogpost about how we should be careful what we tweet, retweet and so on. Couldn’t resist spoofing it…

Click here to see the film.

"Language is like ecosystem. Not McNuggets."


  • Based on: Avatar (Russian dubbed trailer)
  • The context: IATEFL 2010 was notable for the large number of talks on technology. This trailer follows an undercover teacher working for the evil EduCorp. They want to destroy the gentle and pure Dogm’ee, who are resisting technology in education.

Click here to see the film.

Prepare for a humanistic sacrifice...


  • Based on: The Mist (Russian dubbed trailer)
  • The context: When the ash cloud hit Europe it threw everyone into turmoil and anxiety. Would we ever travel by air again? This trailer tells the story of a Saturday morning training session gone terribly wrong.

Click here to see the film.

"I think some crazy anti-coursebook bloggers put me here!"


  • Based on:ย  (Russian dubbed trailer)
  • The context: Ryan Reynolds plays… erm, me! Buried in a coffin underground and being forced to burn my books. But is this really an anti-coursebook plot or a cruel marketing trick from my publisher?

Click here to see the film.

Published in: on December 17, 2010 at 5:41 pm  Comments (15)  
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15 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. I’ve always loved this idea, Lindsay. I have yet to try it out myself, but yours are a good laugh!

    Merry Xmas!

  2. #4 Harrotar is my favourite. It seemed the best match of subtitles and video content as well as appealing to a particular movement we would like to see in our language schools here in Australia.

    • Thanks Vernon, Harrotar is my favourite too, along with Any Given Dogme… Good luck unplugging your schools!

  3. Ha ha ha, these are amazing! I had no idea about this hidden talent of yours, Lindsay! Only had time for the first one this morning (“That’s another thing Dogme rejects. Faffing about.” LOL)–but I’ll definitely be back to watch the rest later!

    PS: Have you ever done a Downfall video? I could see one with Hitler as a DOS being informed that no textbooks have been ordered for this semester, and that the teachers are going in unplugged… ๐Ÿ˜€

    • Hi Marcos
      Didn’t know you had missed these! Downfall would have been the obvious choice yes. But I felt it had been done just too many times in different contexts. There is a funny one already out there called Hitler fails his Delta.
      Enjoy the others – Harrotar especially…

  4. Sheer brilliance, Lindsay, sheer brilliance. These are fantastic, I almost fell out of my chair laughing, especially when the hardened colonel of EduCorp says he wants to “sell 10,000 IWB’s to this scum.” You missed an alternative calling as a hollywood scriptwriter; the guys who wrote Airplane and The Naked Gun have nothing on you. I am not a fan of using subtitled film in language teaching – one of these days I will get off my backside and write a post about that – but I can’t think of a better, funnier way to poke a bit of fun at our profession. Well done.

    • Thanks Paul, appreciate it. Airplane and Naked Gun… that is high praise indeed. Saw Airplane just the other day: I’m surprised how well it holds up!

  5. Well you’ve done it again hey?
    Outstandingly witty ๐Ÿ™‚ Had seemed some during the year and was happy to enjoy the ingenious new additions.
    Can we put in a request for “Resuscitated” for 2011.
    And you’ve just got the Oscar for Best Overstream Subtitling!
    Thanks for adding smiles and laughter to the end of a long day ๐Ÿ˜‰

  6. Fabulous Lindsay – I had somehow missed Harrotar. Horror, did I miss a tweet or two about it? Luckily our VLE soon flashed up an alert, and I was able to catch it on a local IWB. Definitely the most seminal of your works.

  7. […] Be prepared to have a good time while watching his Six subtitled films. […]

  8. Love it Lindsay

    Yes, this resource has great potential for language teaching.
    You could, for example personalise the subtitles for your students. A little bit of a gimmick maybe (e.g. He Yaroslav!), but a good laugh.

    More seriously, you could, for example, show a video and put questions you want the students to answer while watching up as subtitles.

    Thanks for this, I’ll definitely use it myself.

  9. Fabulous Lindsay – I had somehow missed Harrotar. Horror, did I miss a tweet or two about it? Luckily our VLE soon flashed up an alert, and I was able to catch it on a local IWB. Definitely the most seminal of your works.

  10. This is great! What a cool way of using subtitles to inform and entertain! I love how your subtitling has a slightly different purpose to the usual aim ๐Ÿ™‚

  11. I just watched all of your videos after trying to find Battleship ELT to demonstrate to someone how overstream works. Well done! They’re brilliant ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Thanks Sandy! Much appreciated!

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