Ideology Manipulation of the Chinese-English Subtitled “Main Melody” Films: A Case Study of Wolf Warrior II and The Wandering Earth

Ying Xie


Films are the reflection of the mainstream ideology in a specific culture. More importantly, the process of film translation itself is equivalent to the rewriting process by the translator (Lefevere 1992), which embodies and even strengthens the manipulation of social ideology. As the “Main Melody” films that focus on propagandizing the official messages of the Communist Party of China (CPC), Wolf Warrior II (2017) and The Wandering Earth (2019)’s rewritten subtitles intensively embody the ideology manipulation under the regime of the CPC and the Chinese government. By discussing how audiences from different social, cultural, ethnic backgrounds might employ their experience and knowledge about the Chinese society and politics to decode the subtitles in ways that contradict the intended meaning, this paper seeks to investigate the effectiveness of the rewritten subtitles’ ideological manipulation towards the Chinese audience and the English-speaking audience.


Audiovisual Translation, Ideology Manipulation, “Main Melody” Film, Rewriting, Social-political Environment, Subtitle Translation

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