Tagalog Trivia in Constantine

Last weekend, I happened to watch “Constantine,” starring Keanu Reeves, over the Movie Channel in Skyperfect tv. Actually I have already watched the movie on DVD, but it was fun just the same watching it all over again.

Watch a clip from the movie here:

First of all, notice that in the kitchen, next to the whistling kettle on the stove, hanging on the wall is a small Philippine flag (red and blue, with a white triangle, for those who don’t know what a Philippine flag looks like :)). Then, as John Constantine finished whispering into the possessed girl’s ears, she responded:

Pa-pa-ta-yin na-tin si-yaahhhhhh!” This is Tagalog, a dialect in the Philippines. It is also referred to as “Filipino,” after it was made into the country’s national language. Translated, it means: “We will kill him!” “Siya” could refer to a woman or man, but in this case it’s obvious as to whom it was being addressed.

After the demon-busting business by Constantine is finished, the girl’s mother and relatives (?) rushes to her and babbles in another foreign language, but only now it doesn’t sound like Tagalog anymore. Sounds more like Chinese to me. So is the girl supposedly “Chinese,” but possessed by a Tagalog-speaking demon?

Why Tagalog? Go figure!

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20 Responses to Tagalog Trivia in Constantine

  1. bw says:

    Ha! And they never even thought that the movie will be viewed in the Phils :) That’s Hollywood catering to the North American market, thinking that everyone here is ignorant of other languages. They should have just invented a new language, exclusively for movies and no one would
    give a care :)

  2. Prab says:

    Yep, I noticed it too when I first saw the movie on DVD. I thought the girl looked Filipino, but yeah, after she got exorcised, the family started talking in another language.

  3. dimaks says:

    with this movie, i was very much intrigued by the gender of angel Gabriel :)

  4. Toe says:

    I’ve never seen Constantine but it looks interesting. I think it’s the same in Return of the Jedi. Someone told me that Jabba the Hut and the ewoks would say a lot of Tagalog words in their alien language.

  5. lai says:

    anak ng! ganon. pang alien or mala dimonyo pala ang salita natin. hmp. ngayon lang ako nagcomment sa tagalog. nakakatakot ba ang dating?

  6. niceheart says:

    I’m never seen this movie before. But yeah, those are interesting observations. These film producers should have taken that into consideration.

  7. kathy says:

    But I really wonder if it was deliberately included, or just an honest-to-goodness mistake. Could it be that somebody connived with the scriptwriter, saying hey, how about saying this in Tagalog? Pinoy moviegoers will surely notice it, and then spread the word about it. Heck, I’m already doing it, hahaha. :)

  8. kathy says:

    Yeah, when the girl returned to “normal,” she really looked Filipino. I wouldn’t mind debuting on the big screen if I could get Keanu Reeves whispering that close to my ears…:)

  9. kathy says:

    good observation! i also noticed that “Gabriel” didn’t seem to have any prominent boobs…just the same, it was a surprise to find Gabriel looking like a woman.

  10. kathy says:

    Wait…yeah I think you may be right about the ewoks. I think I’ll go watch Star Wars again to hear what the ewoks exactly said. :)

  11. kathy says:

    LOL! Wow that is just about the wittiest remark you’ve ever posted here! Okay ang hirit mo ah. :)

  12. kathy says:

    As I said in my response to bw’s comment above, I wonder if these trivial inclusions were just meant to create buzz about the movie. It’s that, or they are really not interested in being accurate and consistent. Anyway, that’s Hollywood.

  13. Prab says:

    On the Angel Gabriel thing, I think they meant it to be that angels didn’t have a gender (err.. sexless? lol).

  14. dimaks says:

    from my readings, angels do not have gender too. as this site would explain it.

  15. kathy says:

    thanks dimaks! there’s one good argument in the site you gave…why should angels have gender, when there’s no need to procreate?

  16. andrew torres says:

    hey guys,

    the possessed girl is jhonna trias (with the “h” in her name and the hispanic family name, she’s pinay. (see: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0360486/fullcredits) pinoy.com also featured an interview confirming jhoanna is pinay (see: http://www.tsinoy.com/forum/showthread.php?t=396&page=2&pp=15)

  17. kathy says:

    wow! wherever did you get this info? :) thanks a lot. although i wonder why there’s confusion on what she actually said. in the site you gave, someone mentioned that the girl said “Papatayin natin silang lahat!” hehe

  18. Dave says:

    ang sinabi sa movie “paphatayhin natin sila” kasi di marunong magtagalog yung demon na laking states. yo. punta kayo sa site ko sana ilink dito.


  19. Steve says:

    I always thought it was “Sila” for “them” but now I not so sure. It makes sense both ways.

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