Film Friday rolls into 2009 with a very difficult clip from a movie that may or may not star Ed Harris. Not only is our selection quite short, it's exceedingly challenging: there are no proper names and the exchange is close to a cinematic cliche. While we think there are still enough clues to peg the film, this is much more of a challenge than we've offered up in past weeks. So listen in, and if you think you can identify the film send us an email at
 said on
January 4, 2009
I found the audio of the movie hard to follow! Did anyone else? I couldn't hear 但愿 at all!

But I got it from the second line.

I've seen this movie so many times that I think you could have said any line at all from any part of the movie and I would have got it.

I would have liked some more lines from the movie too, perhaps not lifted from the recording, but read by PopupChinese people. More lines would have helped if I hadn't known the movie, and would have helped more with Chinese too.

And if they were read by someone it would have helped with the recording problem (was that just me?).


^My favourite line. I haven't lifted it from the movie, just translated it myself.
 said on
January 4, 2009
但愿 really blitzes by but it's there in all of its messy glory.

Congrats on guessing correctly btw. I really wasn't expecting ANYONE to get this one, especially since it turns out the film doesn't have anything to do with Ed Harris. It's definitely a really solid thriller - was surprised to find the Chinese version when we were looking for a suitable candidate.
 said on
January 9, 2009
"Danger runs deep...."

 said on
January 11, 2009
Vocabulary from this lesson:

但愿 [dànyuàn] I wish; if only; 只希望

上帝 [shàngdì] God

处于 [chǔyú] to be in a certain place; situated

处 is a 多音字 (a character with multiple readings):

As a verb it's third tone:

于 [chǔyú]

理 [chǔlǐ] to deal with

As a noun it's fourth tone:

方 [chùfāng] prescription

办事 [bànshìchù] bureau; local office of the government

长 [chùzhǎng] head of a department; section chief

( the same pattern applies to [shǔ] and [shù])

潜水艇 [qiánshuǐtǐnɡ] a submarine

核武器扩散 [hé wǔ qì kuò sàn] nuclear proliferation