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A Simple Life (桃姐) Taiwanese Style


A Simple Life(桃姐) is the Golden Horse winning film starring Andy Lau(劉德華) and Deanie Ip(葉德嫻). As a Hong Kong production, naturally the film is in Cantonese. I haven’t seen the Taiwanese version of the film, but judging by the trailer, it seems that they decided to dub the old servant (Ip) in Taiwanese and the young master of the family (Lau) in mixed Mandarin/Taiwanese. The Taiwanese distributors obviously believe that this will bring about a cordial feeling among the audience. Not everybody in Taiwan understands Taiwanese (use is also in slow decline) and so the choice made to dub in Taiwanese is quite a gamble, albeit one that I am very happy to see. I’d be interested to know if there have been other films in the past that have used such dubbing techniques.

As a side note, I have asked the question to some Taiwanese people as to why Cantonese films need dubbing. Why cant they just have subtitles like most films in English? The answer was that “Cantonese sounds awful!”. Oh dear! Let’s hope the people I asked weren’t representative of the whole of Taiwan.

From → Cantonese, Taiwanese

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