Opening credits for "Eltávozott nap" (The Girl, 1968)

"Eltávozott nap" (The Girl) is a 1968 Hungarian film starring rock singer Kati Kovács. I haven't yet seen the film, about a working class girl's search for her biological mother, but the opening freakbeat credits drive me wild. You can read more about The Girl and other Hungarian, Czech, and Russian films at the UC Berkeley Art Museum & Pacific Film Archive calendar for their ongoing "Treasures of Eastern European and Soviet Cinema" series. (via Toys and Techniques)


  1. Actually, the meaning of “eltávozott nap” is more like ‘departed day’, or ‘departed sun’, whichever you prefer, and it’s the title of the song (by possibly the most important Hungarian beat band, Illés) that you hear in the video.  The lyrics are (I’m translating roughly here) “Evening, when you see the sun go down / imagine another one in the sky / at night, by the light of the imagined sun / you’ll see that you are alone / Because you need love / so you’ll have something to write about / you need love / you need to laugh and cry / you need love / so you can sing about it / Don’t wait until the sun goes down / find yourself someone else right away / at night when there’s no light and the wind is cold / he’ll lie down next to you and want you / Because you need love / because nothing else helps / because you need love / so you will have children / because you need love / because it’s so simple.”   The film was the first feature by the important Hungarian director Márta Mészáros (and the first Hungarian film by a female director) and is definitely worth seeing. 

    1.  мy coυѕιɴ ιѕ мαĸιɴɢ $51/нoυr oɴlιɴe. υɴeмployed ғor α coυple oғ yeαrѕ αɴd prevιoυѕ yeαr ѕнe ɢoт α $1З619cнecĸ wιтн oɴlιɴe joв ғor α coυple oғ dαyѕ. ѕee мore αт…­ ­ViewMore——————————————&#46qr&#46net/kkEj

      The film was the first feature by the important Hungarian director Márta
      Mészáros (and the first Hungarian film by a female director) and is
      definitely worth seeing.

    2. I was curious about the title too (and looked it up without checking the comments first, naturally), and IMDB has the translation “The Day Has Gone”, which is a bit more poetic than your direct translation :)

      1. Not as accurate though, as “eltávozott” here is used as an adjective, more accurately an attributive participle (“departed ___”), not as a finite verb (“___ has departed/gone away” — the role it would play in a sentence like “eltávozott a nap” or “a nap eltávozott,” i.e. “the day/sun has gone away.”)  Alas no English translation can adequately capture the ambiguity between “day” (period) and “sun” (heavenly body) that is inherent in the Hungarian word “nap” – but if I had to choose, I might have chosen “Departed Sun” over “The Day Has Gone” just because of the title song, which is unambiguously about the sun going down.  All in all, though, and having seen the movie, I think “The Girl” isn’t too bad a choice for a title (even if it is a bit unimaginative).

        I suspect by the way that the Illés song (penned by the band’s lyricist János Bródy, who curiously appears as Bródi in the credits – I guess he wasn’t as universally known then as he is now) predated the movie, i.e. the movie’s title came from the song title, not the other way around.

        TL;DR: more than you wanted to know about “Eltávozott nap,” and translators don’t have it easy.

  2. By the way, the entire film can be seen here (TV rip): 

    And yes, that is Kati Kovács (the star) singing.

  3. There’s some found-in-translation poetry in Kati‘s English Wikipedia article: “She became the first famous nationally in 1965 when she won the seminal TV talent show in Hungary ‘Who Knows What?'”

    1. I’m glad Kovács Kati *has* an English Wikipedia page, so I’m hardly going to quibble about the grammar, if it hasn’t already been corrected :-)

      Oh yes, “Ki mit tud?”  –  “tud” (“knows”) is used more in the sense of “know how to/be able to [do something]” than “know [a fact]”.    The show’s title has roughly the flavor that, say, “What can you do?” would in English.  Many great Hungarian musicians got their start on that show.  If you like the music in the video, I can recommend looking for (Hungarian name order follows!)  Kovács Kati, Koncz Zsuzsa,  Zorán, the bands Illés, Fonográf, Metró, LGT, Hungária, …  to name just a few.   A lot of the major players worked together in different formations so you’ll see the same names popping up over and over in different contexts.

      PS Yes, I’m aware that no one will ever read this comment, which makes me wonder why I am bothering to struggle with BoingBoing’s tricked-out comment system which, over and over, refuses to believe I am “truly” logged in, then manages to lock up and then crash my fully-updated Safari on a brand new Mac (I stopped reading BB on my iPad as I can’t go for more than a minute or two without it killing the entire browser – that I think has to do with the fancified video embedding and not the comments, though).  I’ve not encountered this kind of consistent crashiness on any other major website, even other ones that use Disqus (or, as I call it, Disqust), which makes me think that BB is doing something extra-egregious in a misguided attempt to be a just a bit flashier.   

      1. Wow, that’s service!  Barely 10 minutes after I posted the above, BB announced it was getting rid of Disqus :-)

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