Final Word from Tuesday, January 14, 2014

We don't know why the film distributor decided to translate American Hustle as Špinavý trik, which retranslates as Dirty Trick, but maybe it's because a literal translation would make it sound as if the Americans had a monopoly on such skullduggery. If the movie were called Americký podfuk or Američtí podfukáři, all kinds of Czech mini-godfathers, regional politicians and retired MPs would start bellyaching about how they've pulled off plenty of scams like that, if only Hollywood gave them a chance to show the world how it's done. Czech filmmakers need to think bigger. The Story of a Godfather didn't go anywhere internationally, because every country has its gangsters. Český tunelář, with Wall Street-trained investment bankers, KGB agents and investigators who get suicided, might sell better, but, alas, the best subjects for a film about the beginnings of Czech capitalism aren't yet interested in having their stories told. [Czech Republic StB tunneling tunnelling asset-stripping Příběh kmotra]

Glossary of difficult words

to hustle someone - to swindle or cheat someone; 

to tunnel - a Czech term, sometimes used in English, meaning to strip assets from a company; 

skullduggery - trickery; underhanded or unscrupulous behavior; 

Americký podfuk, Američtí podfukáři - literally, American Hustle and American Hustlers; 

to bellyache - to complain noisily or consistently; 

to pull something off - to successfully engage in an activity, often an illicit one; 

scam - a dishonest scheme; a fraud; 

to get suicided - to be murdered in such a way that it appears to be suicide or is classified as suicide.

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