English subtitles for Japanese DVD version of German movie 'Downfall', using VLC media player - got it??
June 5, 2006 6:58 AM   Subscribe

I just rented out the Japanese DVD version of the German movie 'Downfall' without realising there are no English subtitles. I'm using VLC media player to watch it.

I'm an idiot, I didn't even think that it would be a German made film. Is there anything I can do? I've used subtitles with VLC media player before but only with avi files.

Note 1: the video works fine.
Note 2: I tried reading the VLC FAQs, maybe I need an idiots guide?
posted by Jase_B to Computers & Internet (7 answers total)
Also, I actually downloaded the English subtitles, but they came in two separate files called 'Der Untergang Cd1.srt' and 'Der Untergang Cd2.srt'. Maybe there's some way I can rip the whole movie then attach the subtitles the regular way? But then there's the problem with there being two subtitle files. I would need to join them somehow I guess.
posted by Jase_B at 7:04 AM on June 5, 2006

About joining the subtitles: open the .srt files into notepad, and they'll be a text file with timestamps and dialogue. Then you can just CTRL+A, paste them together (making sure there are no overlaps) and save them as a single .srt file.

The only experience I have with using separate subtitles however is when I've got the film as a single .avi file (the .srt file has to be the same name as the .avi and then you highlight them both and open them at the same time for it to appear in the VLC menu). Maybe you could rip the DVD into an .avi file and then play them together? Or perhaps there's a way of using the subtitles file with the existing DVD.
posted by saturnine at 7:42 AM on June 5, 2006


I opened the 'CD 2' file and it looks like the subtitles start over. Will that cause confusion? See below:

00:00:00,000 --> 00:00:05,925
Being loyal to this law,
I've never had compassion.

00:00:07,460 --> 00:00:11,460
I've always been ruthless
when faced with internal...

00:00:11,960 --> 00:00:15,960
...opposition from other races.
And that's the only way.
posted by Jase_B at 7:47 AM on June 5, 2006

Ok, it appears that the subtitles have been created based on the movie being stopped at the 74min mark, as the final subtitle for 'CD 1' is as follows:

01:13:32,813 --> 01:13:36,426
Being loyal to this law,
I've never had compassion.

I should now able to create a 'duplicate' of CD1 and CD2 by copying the DVD onto two separate files, with the first file stopping at the 74min mark. I just downloaded Magic DVD Ripper and it has an option to do just that. I guess 74mins is the standard then?

We'll see how I go. If anyone has any other suggestions please let me know.
posted by Jase_B at 8:13 AM on June 5, 2006

wouldn't it just be easier to rent the english version of the dvd? splitting the dvd and hoping the subtitles don't get messed up seems like a lot of work. what if the subtitles you downloaded were for a version of the movie that had 10 seconds of opening credits cut from the beginning? then your subtitles will be 10 seconds out of sync... i don't know about you, but that would REALLY annoy me.

its a great movie btw.
posted by hummercash at 8:51 AM on June 5, 2006

There are all kinds of programs for manipulating subtitle files. My experience with them is mixed, though. The subtitles you downloaded were made specifically for someone's 2 CD pirated version, and getting them properly synced up with your dvd will be tricky.
posted by GeekAnimator at 11:36 AM on June 5, 2006

Yes, the subtitles are for the 2-disc pirated version of the movie. (It's probably the same one I downloaded! Fantastic film, by the way.)

Check Videohelp for subtitle utilities -- there's probably something that will help. You'll have to join the two files together (e.g. shifting the subs in the second file over by X number of minutes) and then possibly perform an additional offset because different DVD editions have different logos/etc. at the beginning of the movie, thus slightly changing the length.

Also, if the subtitles you have are for a PAL version of the movie (which is likely since it's a European film), you'll have to perform a framerate conversion on the subs as well, since PAL transfers run something like 6% (?) faster than NTSC ones. I imagine any utility that could do the above tricks could do this conversion as well.
posted by neckro23 at 4:46 PM on June 5, 2006

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