What do you think?
I personally feel that all of the lines are good, but there’s a certain “oomph” missing from the Italian translation of “Here’s looking at you, kid.” I’m a translator myself, so I can appreciate the challenges of accurately conveying the meaning, subtext, context, idiom, flow, and timing of this iconic line. To be fair, “To your health, little girl” sounds much better in Italian than it does in English, but “Here’s looking at you” has a certain something that gets lost in translation. Not to say the translators did a poor job (I’m stumped for a better alternative!) but it does make the case for learning languages and watching movies in their original language whenever possible. Watching movies in Italian, I’ve often found that certain lines and expressions became much richer and fuller once I was able to understand the original dialogue instead of relying solely on the English subtitles.
If you’d like to improve Italian, as well as familiarize yourself with Italian culture (both historical and contemporary) here are some great film options, available on Amazon. (You can choose to buy the DVDs, buy or rent digital copies, or some, like Cinema Paradiso are available for free with an Amazon prime membership.)
I enjoyed all of the above films, but if you’re not sure where to start, may I suggest…
Ladri di Biciclette (The Bicycle Thief)
A classic by the famed director De Sica, and worth seeing- whether you’re interested in the Italian language or not.
Il Postino (The Postman)
Endearing and charming and also very interesting linguistically- a “simple”, barely comprehensible postman discovers poetry and the power of words thanks to Pablo Neruda and his beloved, Beatrice.
L’Ultimo Bacio (The Last Kiss)
An American version was also made of this film, but the original Italian one is much better! An interesting storyline about growing up and settling down, it features more contemporary situations and dialogue that are useful for learning common expressions and real, everyday Italian.