I've pointed out how poorly foreign language films are translated into English. Not so much translated as re-badged. As a student of French, I notice it mostly on French titles.
Entre les murs became The Class which I find quite bland and lacking in the poignancy of the literal Between The Walls.
Just last night I posted about Non ma fille tu n’iras pas danser renamed Making Plans for Lena, which has nothing on the literal No My Daughter, You Will Not Dance. Given Lena's relationship with her father and given the way her life is unfolding, the literal meaning is so much deeper.
[Edit: my French teacher has corrected my translation. It should be No My Daughter, You Will Not Go Dancing]
Another French Film Festival title I mentioned was Jusqu’à toi (literally, To You) which is renamed Every Jack Has A Jill for us Anglophones. How they come up with a cutesy English title like that is beyond me. It's just so cute without bearing any (or little) relation to the film. "To You" doesn't give much away, I suppose. Perhaps it doesn't titillate the mind of the target audience like "Every Jack Has a Jill".
One of the worst cases of title bastardisation I can recall is Catherine Breillat's À ma soeur (For My Sister) being renamed as Fat Girl, a title that makes it sound like it's a silly romantic comedy rather than the serious drama it is.
I suppose I'm a purist, and I prefer to use either the original title as intended by the film-maker, or at least a literal translation. It's all about respect for the art and the artist. With the French Film Festival currently in full steam (and I've seen 17 of the films so far), it's not unusual that I'm thinking about this. But what prompted this post was the recognition that this renaming is not a phenomenon that is unique to English bastardisation of foreign titles.
Balibo has been renamed The Balibo Conspiracy for overseas distribution. And, The Hurt Locker has been translated into French as Demineurs, literally Bomb Disposal Experts - pretty bland and generic, I suppose, compared to the original title. I noticed it in an email from French Amazon, which I subscribe to.
While I prefer the English title, I've got to say that the French artwork is a big improvement on the American. That one big single image says it all with impact, and even the colouration is quite fascinating. The American version disperses the impact, trying to have bit both ways - explosion and the GI Joe aesthetic with Jeremy Renner in the foreground.
But, I digress. Back to renaming - what about you, do you have any weird renamings you'd like to share?