Notes on Translation

By Can Tamura

The English translations of film titles from 1936 to 1990 are based on the list published in D. Tsolmon’s (1995) book Mongol Kino.  I started translating the titles after my first trip to Ulaanbaatar in 2002, later posting them on this website from 2004 onward. During the initial phases of the translation project, I relied mostly on the Mongolian-English dictionary by Charles Bawden (1997), comparing my translations to the Japanese versions in The Japan Foundation Asia Center’s Mongolian film festival catalog from 1998 (Umino and Khokhbaatar 1998). In August 2020, in the final phase of translating the Tsolmon list, the usual process was to first enter each title into Google Translate, then make adjustments while consulting the Bawden dictionary, and comparing them with the Japanese film titles and English translations written by Lucy M. Rees and Tümenjiin Bekhbat in 2009 (Rees 2015). The translation of the film titles in the Tsolmon list from 1936 to 1990 is now complete.

I am currently in the process of compiling a list in Mongolian of films made from 1990 onward (including films from 1990 that do not appear in the Tsolmon list) from a variety of other sources including the Mongol Kino official website (Mongol Kino 2014), and translating them into English. The English titles of 8 films made between 1991 and 1995 are written as they appear in the catalog of the Japan Foundation Asia Center (1998).

Can Tamura
August 14, 2020
Kanazawa Japan


Bawden, Charles. 1997. Mongolian-English Dictionary. London: Kegan Paul International.

Google. n.d. Google Translate.

Mongol Kino. 2014. “Uran saikhny kino Уран сайхны кино [Feature Films].” Mongol kino negtel Монгол кино нэгтгэл [Mongol Kino Consolidation].уран-сайхны-кино.

Rees, Lucy M. 2015. Mongolian Film Music: Tradition, Revolution and Propaganda. Farnham: Ashgate.

Tsolmon Цолмон, D. 1995. Mongol Kino Монгол Кино [Mongolian Cinema]. Ulaanbaatar: Mongol Ulsyn Soyolyn Yaam.

Umino Mikio 海野末来雄 and Khokhbaatar フフバートル. 1998. “Mongoru eiga seisaku risuto (1936~1990) モンゴル映画製作リスト(1936〜1990) [Mongolian Cinema Production List (1936~1990)].” In Asian Cinema Series No. 6 Mongolian Film Festival 1998: Beyond the Grass Steppe, 41–44. Tokyo: The Japan Foundation Asia Center.