American Movies with Shqip Subtitles

I don’t normally watch many television shows or movies. But since I am trying to learn a new language, I have set a goal of watching one movie per week with Shqip subtitles. Copyright laws here are nonexistent (*ahem*), which means with a little hunting, it is easy to find something to watch.

There’s one website in particular I’ve been using. While they don’t have everything, they have a decent selection of American films. (They have a lot of action films, though. Not my taste.)

For my first self-assignment, I settled on the film Cruel Intentions. It was the first thing I came across that wasn’t an action film and that sounded mildly appealing. It was every bit as campy as I remembered. Bonus, I now know lots of dirty words in Shqip. (I suppose that’ll be helpful if I start dating a local.)


For my second self-assignment, I decided to watch Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me. An interesting thing I have learned is that subtitles can be pretty loosely translated.


Po means “yes,” while zemer literally translates to “heart.” If you call someone your zemer, it is basically like saying, “my love.” “Yes, my love, yes,” just doesn’t have quite the same ring to it as, “yeah, baby, yeah.”

I had been thinking about The Shawshank Redemption, one of my all-time favorite films, and when a friend told me she watched it with subtitles, I decided it would be my next assignment.

“What’s buried there?”

So many movies focus on romantic love or familial relationships. It’s rare to see a movie that’s just about two people who choose to be friends — something I’ve always loved about Shawshank. The scene at the very end, where Morgan Freeman walks across a beach in Mexico to meet Tim Robbins, never fails to make me tear up. “The Pacific Ocean has no memory …”


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