Tom Cruise Scientology video, robot-translated to German, then re-enacted.

Our pal Johannes at monochrom says, "Here is a great video from a German guy out there who babelfish-translated Tommy Cruise's Scientology promo video into German, and performs it. I think it doesn't even matter if you know what he is talking about, it's still creepy."

Watch Tom Cruise Scientology Deutsche original Übersetzung.


  1. Superb! Also, TC’s future film project, ‘Valkyrie’ has been postponed to a much later release window.

  2. Great acting!

    Side note: I don’t know if this is really babelfish translated, I’m fluent in German and it seems like he speaks as coherently as Cruise does in his video (although I know that isn’t saying much). Is babelfish this good at translation?

  3. @6: It’s better at some languages than others (Japanese becomes nearly unintelligible), but I still can’t imagine it would be good enough to fool a fluent speaker. It certainly can’t make reasonable English out of German text.

  4. I’d like to see someone Babelfish the script into another language, back to English and then perform that. That could be awesomely surreal.

  5. Randomly superimposing a crackling duraflame over his chest is pure genius. Nice attention to detail!

  6. The German version really does make exactly as much sense as the original one. I think automatic translation has a good chance at pulling that off if you manage to put proper punctuation into the transcript, because then you get utterances that are quite short and have simple structure and vocabulary: “You know, I am there to help. We’re here to help. My opinion is, look, you’re either on board or you’re not on board.”

    It’s definitely not Babelfish, though. It would never come up with such consistently correct grammar. And of course ‘Gehirnolik’ is a joke. As a rule, Babelfish never ever makes anything you could call a ‘translation’. It just helps you get the gist.

  7. I always feel a little bad when people make such fun of Scientology’s beliefs, where they might be afraid of making similar fun of a more mainstream religion. It’s not significantly less likely to be true than many of the other religious things most people believe in.

    Of course, their stance on copyright is worthy of ridicule. And Tom Cruise is nutty, but still…how many people in the world think they are really eating a bit of god in the form of a biscuit every Sunday? How many believe that the earth is 6000 years old or that pork is evil?

    In an era when a major american presidential candidate is “welcoming the support” of a man who thinks the US need to go to war with Iran to bring about the apocalypse…maybe we’d be safer watching out for the Thetans or whatever.

  8. As has been noted, this is no Babelfish translation (grammar is way too coherent, for what it’s worth) but still very good: excellent acting, too.

  9. Matt: If it were just about beliefs, I think no one would bother them at all.

    It’s about charging vast amounts of money for their “teaching”, it’s about their illegal practices, about their threats (their lawyer send me a letter via FedEx from the USA for linking to…), about the people that have disappeared, about the policy to exclude members and destroy their lives if they leave Scientology, about the dual standard where celebrities get a different version of the “teachings” than the rest.

    You can only truly appreciate Scientology when you’ve had your car’s tires knifed for trying to teach their methods without receiving payment.

    Take a look at for a list of many of the shady practices of the company called Church of Scientology. They aren’t as harmless as you might think they are, and I’m happy that many places still don’t recognize them as religion, since that would give them a massive amount of protection.

  10. This is beyond great. Acting superb, german is off limit to any understanding (portraying what the original felt like – lots of blah blah ). This guy needs to get an oscar.

    I can see how this becomes a new trend – next stop politicans…


  11. Oh man!

    When he does “the grin” and “the teeth” about half way through it is priceless! He gets it *exactly right* … and the German makes just as (little/much) sense as the original … hilarious.


    – HC

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