Hi there Linguaphiles,
Today I got to sit in a little soundproof box and help dub a Hebrew movie into English. (Aside from the part where my character's brother dies and she's saying her lines through sobs, I did superbly.) While I was there, I asked the dude in charge who the target audience of this dubbed movie is and informed him that I can't stand watching dubbed movies unless sometimes if they're animated because it drives me nuts when the character's mouths don't match up with the words. Dubbing dude (DD) assured me that this is because I'm Israeli (as was he) and that Americans and Europeans are too lazy to read subtitles. He further enlightened me that in countries such as Poland, they'll just have one guy voice over all the characters (including women and children) with no emotion at all and that what we were doing there today was of much higher quality than that. Americans are hardly exposed to any foreign films or tv shows - other than anime which is dubbed to go on tv. I also remember everything in France and Spain (and perhaps Germany? I didn't watch any actual tv there.) was dubbed into French or Spanish (or German?) and everyone seemed to like it that way. Whereas in Israel and smaller European countries which I haven't been to (I think), they keep the original language and just sub it. I personally haven't watched all that much tv or films in languages that aren't Hebrew or English, but when I do, I watch it with subs.
Sorry for the long intro. Do you prefer subs or dubs? Is DD right? Curious what people from different places say. Also I presume that I am asking a biased language-loving bunch, so I am also curious what others near and dear to you (who lack such linguistic fervor) in your various areas of the world would say too.