While the Guillermo del Toro ode to tokusatsu (Godzilla, Ultraman, etc.) films had a reasonable opening in its home country, the box office take was rather low to cover its $190 million dollar budget. However, thanks to an astounding foreign release Pacific Rim can be considered a big success – the highest grossing foreign film of the year so far to be exact.

A large part of that success can be attributed to the might of the massive Chinese film going population. As of 18 August, the Chinese revenue was reported to be 618 million yuan (US$100M) surpassing even what Pacific Rim pulled in its home country. But there’s another reason why people are paying attention to the film’s Chinese release.

It appears that the subtitles were haphazardly put together. Reports of several simple but embarrassing mistakes have been circling the internet such as confusing “populated” with “polluted” in the line “…Hong Kong where it was most polluted.”

Stranger yet was a reference to one of the Jeagers’ “Elbow Rocket” weapon…

…which in the Chinese version it became “Pegasus Meteor First”. This might seem like a nonsensical and vaguely relevant name slapped on for dramatic purposes. However, fans of the Saint Seiya series may recognize it as Pegasus Seiya’s special technique. Here’s a CGI demonstration.

Despite the other mistakes in translation, this reference to a beloved manga and anime franchise has endeared it to netizens of Japan so much that many now (tongue-in-cheek) refer to the Chinese version of the movie as having “god-tier subtitles”.

So listen up Hollywood, if you want to find global box office success China is a market that can’t be ignored, and throwing some random references to manga and anime will make it the toast of Japan in a round-about way. Even the upcoming 47 Ronin movie might go over well with the gratuitous mention of a sakabatou.

Source: Record China via My Game News Flash (Japanese)
Videos: YouTube – IGN, 92ocean1, WarnerBrosPictures