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Best Medley, in 25 Languages!
January 29, 2014 5:46 AM   Subscribe

Disney's Frozen: Let It Go I have always enjoyed a Cantonese version of Disney cartoons, this was edited together so well!
posted by Yellow (80 comments total) 17 users marked this as a favorite

 
My Frozen-addicted six-year old daughter thinks this is all one singer. (Wouldn't that be cool? Are there even singers who could learn the sounds well enough to fake it?)

We hear this song quite a lot at my house.
posted by wenestvedt at 5:48 AM on January 29 [4 favorites]


Public Radio International points out that most of these are European languages -- entirely excluding Africa and South Asia -- and dismisses it as "the Epcot World Showcase of songs." Ouch.
posted by wenestvedt at 5:54 AM on January 29 [5 favorites]


Let it Go, as sung by Arnie as Mr Freeze.
posted by MartinWisse at 5:56 AM on January 29 [2 favorites]


This is why when people say it's impossible to translate, say, opera well, I get very upset.

Creating singable translations just takes time, effort, experience, and, well, money. When those are available, the results can be amazing.
posted by kyrademon at 5:58 AM on January 29 [2 favorites]


KCRW's The Business had an interview with Frozen's writer/director and songwriter that gets into some of how the song got made: Two Women Who Made 'Frozen' a Modern Disney Classic
posted by Going To Maine at 6:02 AM on January 29 [7 favorites]


I assumed that these were the languages that the movie was dubbed into for international release. Do they normally dub into African and South Asian languages for marketing purposes?
posted by Karmakaze at 6:10 AM on January 29 [3 favorites]


The other day my 6-year-old daughter told us she kept waking up in the night with this song stuck in her head. My wife and I were like, "Well, THAT MAKES THREE OF US!"

Just successfully knocked it out of my head yesterday using heavy doses of Pete Seeger.

And now this. It's frozen fractals all around. I can't escape.
posted by etc. at 6:22 AM on January 29 [2 favorites]


Etc. and everyone else, for the record: "Low Rider" is the universal solvent for shit stuck in your head.

...As for this song - my new roommate showed me this very clip three days ago, so it's following me too. But I managed to avoid the song lodging in my head by us then talking about that awesome "all the Jean Valjeans singing in different languages" clip that keeps circulating, and then that turned into "hey, did you know the Japanese Jean Valjean was Chairman Kaga on Iron Chef," and then that turned into talking about food and I avoided inoculation.

In conclusion - low rider cars and food are vaccines against Disney earworms.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 6:32 AM on January 29 [3 favorites]


Empress, it's a retrovirus that you have to guard against constantly: they're releasing an in-theater sing-along version!
posted by wenestvedt at 6:46 AM on January 29


The Idina Menzel version is at the top of the charts in SK, unusually for a non-Korean song.
posted by subdee at 6:50 AM on January 29 [1 favorite]


Dammit. Now I have to listen to "Wham Rap! (Enjoy What You Do)" until it goes away.
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 6:52 AM on January 29 [3 favorites]


I feel like there should be a repository of earworm-cleansers in this thread now.

Allow me to start:

Wham Rap first.

Low Rider.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 6:54 AM on January 29


Ok, it worked. Now, how long before I can get "Low Rider" out of my head?
posted by etc. at 6:54 AM on January 29


Ok, it worked. Now, how long before I can get "Low Rider" out of my head?

Easy, just listen to this.
posted by eriko at 6:55 AM on January 29 [4 favorites]


And for good measure: Chairman Kaga and 16 other Jean Valjeans singing Les Miz.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 6:55 AM on January 29 [2 favorites]


Ok, it worked. Now, how long before I can get "Low Rider" out of my head?

Why would you want to?
posted by Bunny Ultramod at 6:55 AM on January 29 [1 favorite]


"Low Rider" leaves your head of its own accord fairly soon. That's why it works.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 6:57 AM on January 29


My daughter is currently obsessed with the Spanish-language version: Libre Soy. The lyrics are a bit different. During the chorus, Elsa says "I am free, I am free! I cannot hide it anymore. I am free, I am free! Freedom of no return. And I'm left here so strong. I am free, I am free! Cold is also part of me."

The movie track is sung by actress Carmen Sarahi. The pop track is sung by Martina "Tini" Stoessel, an Argentine Disney alum who played the lead in the show Violetta.

Disney and Dreamworks have been releasing multilanguage tracks on their DVD's for a while now, like this one for When You Believe from Prince of Egypt. YouTube users sometimes also post their own spliced-together multilanguage versions of songs from animated feature films.
posted by zarq at 7:01 AM on January 29 [1 favorite]


These song suggestions to get rid of earworms seem like, in this instance, giving yourself syphilis to cure your sniffles.

(NOT WHAM-IST)
posted by MCMikeNamara at 7:12 AM on January 29 [3 favorites]


Oops I didn't read the whole thread before being a smart ass. Apologies.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 7:13 AM on January 29 [1 favorite]


Disney and Dreamworks have been releasing multilanguage tracks on their DVD's for a while now, like this one for When You Believe from Prince of Egypt. YouTube users sometimes also post their own spliced-together multilanguage versions of songs from animated feature films.

I have to add this one from a not so successful Disney movie, because I just plain love this song (and all the ones with the chorus).
posted by linux at 7:19 AM on January 29 [1 favorite]


Slow Ride works, too, as you start hearing the guitars pick up at the end in your mind's ear as you hum it, and you know how the riffs go, and then it's at the end with one final glorious "SLOWWWW RIDE!" A self-terminating earworm that tidies up after itself.
posted by Slap*Happy at 7:20 AM on January 29


Yellow Submarine also works, especially if you sing it yourself.
posted by davejay at 7:24 AM on January 29


I notice that Indonesian, in a huge market that loves kids' films, is not on there, but Malay is. I think the reason may be that in some markets they just don't find it worth fighting the pirates.
posted by texorama at 7:28 AM on January 29


I almost forgot that my favorite animated movie in forever, How to Train Your Dragon, actually does have a song with words in it. But I'm not seeing any other language versions, probably because it's not a typical animated movie musical song.
posted by kmz at 7:40 AM on January 29


There's definitely some interesting ones, but I am surprised they didn't include Turkish. A friend of mine was the spoken and singing voice of Tiana in the Turkish version of "The Princess and the Frog", so Disney definitely has seen it as a market worth targeting in the past.
posted by candyland at 7:40 AM on January 29


Oh, and I've already made plans to see the sing-along Frozen which starts on Friday.
posted by candyland at 7:42 AM on January 29 [3 favorites]


Disney picked the perfect winter to release Frozen.
posted by maryr at 7:42 AM on January 29 [5 favorites]


Oh my goodness I simply must see this movie now.
posted by Sternmeyer at 7:43 AM on January 29


This was brilliantly done, and it's really striking how similar all the voices are to each other.

I'd be interested to know how well it translates back to English, or any other single language. I tried listening to French Disney songs to help with my language learning -- because I know all the English words and they have brilliantly clear enunciation -- and soon discovered that many of the songs I know from childhood (Aladdin and that era) are very different between the languages. The themes are there, and obviously the music is the same, but they're definitely new songs rather than translations. I've been told that their more modern films have much closer translations, but still, it'd be fascinating to know how close they're able to stay in meaning and structure across all those languages.
posted by metaBugs at 7:46 AM on January 29 [1 favorite]


Sternmeyer - that was my exact reaction to this. I went and saw it after getting out of work early for a blizzard - which meant that I got to walk home in swirling snow, trying to convince myself that the cold never bothered me anyway.

That said, sadly, this song is really the only part of the movie that fully focuses on Elsa. The rest of the movie is her sister "rescuing" her which felt like it neutered all the wonderful, freeing sentiment of this song. It isn't that the movie is bad - it's super cute and it's fun - but the longer I think about it, the more the film bothers me.
posted by maryr at 7:46 AM on January 29


You've all heard Jackie Chan singing "I'll Make A Man Out Of You" from Mulan in Mandarin, right? You really need to hear Jackie Chan singing "I'll Make A Man Out Of You" in Mandarin. And then right after you should listen to him sing it in Cantonese.
posted by sixohsix at 7:50 AM on January 29 [8 favorites]


There is nothing in life as cute as 3 and 4 year old girls saying "Frozing Fractals".
posted by DigDoug at 7:55 AM on January 29


I feel like there should be a repository of earworm-cleansers in this thread now.

Mahna Mahna (you're wecome!)
posted by DigDoug at 7:57 AM on January 29 [6 favorites]


There is nothing in life as cute as 3 and 4 year old girls saying "Frozing Fractals".


Related: Maddie and Zoe sing "Let It Go" from Frozen
posted by MCMikeNamara at 8:04 AM on January 29 [2 favorites]


I feel like there should be a repository of earworm-cleansers in this thread now.

The Mario theme.
posted by maryr at 8:05 AM on January 29


Frozen is kind of amazing as a movie - not least for featuring an indigenous male lead without making him completely stereotyped. I am not ashamed to say I've watched it multiple times in theatres. This is great!
posted by corb at 8:08 AM on January 29


I see your earworm and raise you space worms
posted by ook at 8:11 AM on January 29


Thanks so much for the link to that interview, Going to Maine, fascinating! "40 men in a room saying 'make them fight about a man!'"!

That said, sadly, this song is really the only part of the movie that fully focuses on Elsa

The whole film was turned around after the script was re-written (Elsa was originally a villain) in 17 months, which is absolutely insane for an animated feature.. it does feel a bit rushed, and it's a shame the film isn't maybe the ultimate version of itself, but hopefully that will be the musical.. I'm still inordinately fond of Frozen and pathetically grateful for a girl-power feature. I firmly believe the angst-and-power fantasy of Elsa, such a cliche for boys but such a rare thing for girls, is big driver of the crazy box office.
posted by Erasmouse at 8:12 AM on January 29 [9 favorites]


she looks so happy when she runs up the stairs!
posted by postcommunism at 8:16 AM on January 29 [4 favorites]


i think as we grow up there is the burden of more and more responsibility, the things you don't want to do taking precedence over the things you do, etc. this song has such a great release from all of that and to be honest it makes me tear up when i hear it.

i love this movie. i know it's a bit rushed and cheesy at parts, but i love that it not only passes the Bechdel test but epitomizes what more there could be. it's so great that it gives a focus for the female characters that is something other than romance, celebrates the relationship between the sisters and emphasizes the love of family. as Erasmouse said, it's such a rare thing to see... and now i want MORE!
posted by cristinacristinacristina at 8:32 AM on January 29 [8 favorites]


We hear this song quite a lot at my house.

Mine too, but nobody who lives in my house is younger than 22.
posted by Itaxpica at 8:48 AM on January 29 [4 favorites]


Wham Rap

You don't get that anymore, popstars releasing hit singles glorying in going on the dole rather than join the rat race. The eighties were a hell of a drug.
posted by MartinWisse at 8:49 AM on January 29


Okay, that must be Idina Menzel doing, like, most of the European ones, at least, right? Those voices aren't just similar, but sound identical to me.

Also, I just thought this was super cool. It's fascinating to me that they have separate translations for, say, the French and Quebecois markets, or Español, Castillian and Catalan. That's just super-cool to me, for some reason.
posted by Navelgazer at 8:55 AM on January 29 [3 favorites]


i think as we grow up there is the burden of more and more responsibility, the things you don't want to do taking precedence over the things you do, etc. this song has such a great release from all of that and to be honest it makes me tear up when i hear it.

Yeah! I especially found a lot to resonate with in terms of a female (standing in for women on the whole) being told that they have to control their emotions, because emotions are too dangerous - and then that female being released from those strictures in perfect freedom.
posted by corb at 8:59 AM on January 29 [2 favorites]


Prince sings "Letitgo."
posted by flarbuse at 9:06 AM on January 29


You've all heard Jackie Chan singing "I'll Make A Man Out Of You" from Mulan in Mandarin, right? You really need to hear Jackie Chan singing "I'll Make A Man Out Of You" in Mandarin. And then right after you should listen to him sing it in Cantonese.

I honestly like the Mandarin version of Mulan more than the original English, period. Not just the songs, the whole thing.
posted by linux at 9:15 AM on January 29 [2 favorites]


I'm just stunned by the animation. Her face. The range of emotions now that she can finally cut loose. I thought I was ruined by DreamWorks face, but this was just amazing to me.

Also zarq, thank you for Libre Soy because that is some good stuff.
posted by Sternmeyer at 9:17 AM on January 29 [2 favorites]


This was brilliantly done, and it's really striking how similar all the voices are to each other.
The Japanese one stood out. It sounded like a J-Pop voice.
posted by linux at 9:18 AM on January 29 [1 favorite]


Why's everyone scared of earworms? They're wonderful things that go round and round so many times that they start morphing into something new, and eventually become a new thread to the internal soundtrack.

Earworms of bad music, yes, they're awful. But an earworm of a favourite song can mean hours of entertainment.
posted by talitha_kumi at 9:18 AM on January 29


I don't think people categorize a good song getting stuck in their head as an earworm.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 9:20 AM on January 29


That said, sadly, this song is really the only part of the movie that fully focuses on Elsa

Elsa's not the protagonist, Anna is. The fact that she gets the showstopper* is actually fairly unusual in theatre -- that's usually the protagonist or the antagonist. Elsa *was* the antagonist, but the directors and producers literally changed the story and changed Elsa into a tritagonist -- there are different stories about when this happened, one of them being after Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez turned in "Let It Go" and the directors completely reimagined the character.

This is also why it's called "Frozen" and not "The Snow Queen" -- because Elsa, the Snow Queen, is neither the protagonist or the antagonist. Disney caught a lot of flack for renaming "Rapunzel" to "Tangled," but in the end, it proved out, and renaming this makes even more sense.

And, boyo, is WDAS on a tear right now. After the lackluster "Meet the Robinsons" and the OK "Bolt", they've put out "The Princess and The Frog", "Tangled", "Winnie The Pooh", "Wreck-It Ralph" and "Frozen." That's a hell of a streak, right up there with the 1989-1999 run** -- the only real "meh" there is "Winnie the Pooh", which I thought was splendid and far too short, but all have been very profitable and well regarded, and "Frozen" has clearly become one of Disney's true greats -- and in terms of money, it's just behind "The Lion King" with a lot of run still left.

The Parks? They can't keep Frozen merchandise in stock. I heard one CM tell that the single biggest question they get is "Why don't you have any Olaf dolls?" Well, apparently, they last about two hours on the shelves before they're gone. Either they melt, or they're popular.




* End of Act I in the Musical. Bank on it. And, it pretty much pulls every showstopper song trick. "Hmm, let's start in a relative minor, modulate through…ooh, mixolydian!…into the major, end on a high note, then a tag line. BOOM, DONE!" The reason they do this? Well, because it works. It doesn't hurt that the song was explicitly written for Idina Mezel's voice, either -- she hits that high note with power because the Lopez duo made damn sure it was a note she could hit with power.

** That would be "The Little Mermaid", "The Rescuers Down Under", "Beauty and the Beast", "Aladdin", "The Lion King", "Pochahontas", "The Hunchback of Notre Dame", "Hercules", "Mulan" and "Tarzan"
posted by eriko at 9:43 AM on January 29 [5 favorites]


Right, only 8 days until I'm back in the parks. Not thinking about Disney much at all. Thinking more about 80F, actually…..
posted by eriko at 9:43 AM on January 29 [2 favorites]


I am really kind of fascinated by the idea that Elsa was originally envisioned as the villain and then became a main character - that actually explains the lack of a real villain song, which we did note - they are usually the best in Disney, and this is no exception. I wish I could listen to the podcast right now! I'll have to do that later when I get home. Can anyone who's already done so summarize a bit? Why did they make that choice?
posted by corb at 9:59 AM on January 29 [1 favorite]


For those interested in the extent to which the movie changed from conception to finished product, I highly recommend you listen to the "Outtake" tracks on the Deluxe edition of the soundtrack (youtube playlist). Those songs are fun and well-composed, but man, they do NOT fit in with the finished film.
posted by notpace at 10:19 AM on January 29 [1 favorite]


Sternmeyer: " Also zarq, thank you for Libre Soy because that is some good stuff."

You're welcome! :)
posted by zarq at 10:26 AM on January 29


And I know this isn't Elsa, but here's the song that opens, which is a traditional Saami yoik (which there was also an FPP about recently, totally unrelatedly)


...god I love Frozen so much.
posted by corb at 10:26 AM on January 29 [1 favorite]


If you like this and want more, here's a post I did on Disney multi language mixes a few years ago. They're pretty easy to find, since Disney produces 30+ translations for each release -- search YouTube for your favorite song or film and "multilanguage" and there's a decent chance you'll find something!
posted by Rhaomi at 10:29 AM on January 29 [3 favorites]


We tried to buy some Frozen-themed stuff for my daughter's birthday last week and there was...a beach towel (she loved it) and a toddler Ana doll (which was Chuckie-grade terrifying). The Disney Store staff hinted that there would be more products when the DVD ships in March.
posted by wenestvedt at 10:31 AM on January 29 [1 favorite]


I like the argument that "Love is an Open Door" is actually Hans' villain song.

I also think that they had to rename the story from "The Snow Queen" because it bears no resemblance to Hans Christian Andersen's fairy tale. The Snow Queen is about a little commoner girl named Gerta who goes to rescue her friend Kay who was kidnapped by a powerful faerie (the titular "Snow Queen" who is also not a literal monarch.)
posted by Karmakaze at 10:37 AM on January 29 [3 favorites]


Alright, having looked it up, no, Menzel only sings the English version, which is crazy to me, as she's almost certainly trained to sing in all of the Romance languages and German, at the very least, right?
posted by Navelgazer at 11:06 AM on January 29


Apparently the movie is still called "The Snow Queen" in at least some other languages. For example, the French version of the movie is titled "La Reine des Neiges".
posted by baf at 11:18 AM on January 29


corb, the podcast addresses this a bit, though it might be better addressed in this old FPP on Frozen's development. The short notes from the podcast (mostly old news, I think): posted by Going To Maine at 11:44 AM on January 29 [4 favorites]


I never saw that old FPP! I'm so excited and reading everything now, thanks for that and the summary! This is great! Also it helped provide a theory of why Elsa didn't get a love interest too - I wound up really empathizing with her and felt a little sad that she didn't wind up put together with Kristof with them having a little isolated reindeer ice palace all by themselves.
posted by corb at 11:59 AM on January 29


I see your earworm and raise you space worms

I call your space worms and raise you a space herpe.

...Wait, what game ARE we playing?
posted by delfin at 12:02 PM on January 29


John Lasseter was "very protective of Elsa [in support of the writer/director & songwriter] ... he would say things like "Elsa wouldn't do this. That's too mean for Elsa."

The best part that was when they said that Lasseter supported them in shooting down the jealousy plot lines (Elsa and Anna fighting over Hans) that the other male writers/directors kept trying to throw in.
posted by nooneyouknow at 1:02 PM on January 29 [3 favorites]


Oh, good, this is probably a safe space to admit that I spent three hours on Sunday fitting together and recording the vocals for a mashup of "Let It Go" and "Defying Gravity." If they were going to make them so similar, why didn't they put them in the same damn key?? Anyway, hopefully coming soon, to an a cappella group near you...
posted by ilana at 1:35 PM on January 29 [7 favorites]


I was delighted several years ago when someone gave me the soundtrack for "The Nightmare Before Christmas" in German, The Oogie Boogie is awesome, and the translated lyrics for "this is halloween" in russian are great.
posted by boilermonster at 11:44 PM on January 29


I'm still inordinately fond of Frozen and pathetically grateful for a girl-power feature. I firmly believe the angst-and-power fantasy of Elsa, such a cliche for boys but such a rare thing for girls, is big driver of the crazy box office.

My 14yo daughter and her friends are OBSESSED with this movie—they've seen it four times, including once in 3D, and have plans to go to the singalong version this weekend. (Seriously, at this point the only thing left for them to do is the Oculus Rift version.) And a huge part of why they love it so much, as they've told me themselves, is that for once it's not about needing a boy to love you in order to be a person.

The two main characters are sisters, but even more than seeing this as being about sibling difficulty and bonding and love, my daughter and friends see it as being about the difficulty and bonding and love inherent in female friendship. (And ofc even seeing the movie together and perpetuating tumblr memes about it has become a bonding/friendship experience.) They find it incredibly empowering, and somewhat revelatory, that one of the most powerful message of the movie is pretty much the exact opposite of what they've come to expect from pretty much all the media they consume.

Anyway, my point is, I guess I'm going to be seeing it for the fourth time and singing along this weekend.
posted by mothershock at 5:25 AM on January 30 [4 favorites]


My 6-year-old nephew apparently can't get enough of this movie. My brother says it's because he loves princesses.
posted by Navelgazer at 9:58 AM on January 30 [1 favorite]


The last two comments have, ironically, thawed my sometimes cynical heart.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 11:00 AM on January 30 [3 favorites]


In case you wanted a sing-a-long in your living room (or any room for that matter) Disney makes it possible via their site. Enjoy. Sing your heart out, you are all princesses!
posted by Yellow at 5:02 AM on January 31 [1 favorite]


Bạn có muốn xây dựng một snowman? Voulez-vous construire un bonhomme de neige? Vill du bygga en snögubbe? Ønsker du at bygge en snemand? Você Quer Brincar na Neve? Vem Fazer Bonecos de Neve.
posted by Going To Maine at 6:47 AM on January 31


(Ok, "Voulez-vous construire un bonhomme de neige?" should actually be "Je voudrais faire un bonhomme de neige.")
posted by Going To Maine at 7:08 AM on January 31


I probably should not be surprised that there is no native Vietnamese word for "snowman".
posted by maryr at 11:19 AM on January 31


Honestly, "Do You Want To Build A Snowman?" is waaaay more ear-wormy than "Let It Go". Because the main lyrics is so easily twistable into other lyrics!

You're a programmer? "Do you want to build a program?"
You're a fan of female singer-songwriters? "Do you want to build a snow-Mann?"
You're going clubbing? "Do you want to get a fake tan?"
Going car shopping? "Do you want to get a new van?"
Having a mid-life crisis? "Do you want make a new plan?"
Into cooking? "Do you want to bake a big flan?"

It's everywhere. Everywhere.

Salut, Jean d'Arc!
posted by Going To Maine at 3:54 PM on January 31 [3 favorites]


Game of Disney.
posted by homunculus at 8:01 PM on January 31


Make It So - A Parody of "Let It Go" from Disney's Frozen

Not as good as Picard sings "Let it Snow," but then what is?
posted by homunculus at 7:44 PM on February 5 [2 favorites]


Christina Bianco singing Let It Go as just about everybody.
posted by Wordwoman at 7:54 PM on February 13


Frozen composers discuss the song and what inspired it. [NYT] Pretty cute.
posted by Mchelly at 4:17 AM on February 28


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