The Neverending Story

In the movie The Neverending Story the kid in the school is supposed to yell out the name of the emperess. Does anyone know what he gives her as a name? I have been trying to figure that out for years and still don’t know what it is. Thanks.

I’ve read the book but can’t remember and don’t have a copy here.

10 bucks says Atreyu knows (his username is the same as the child hero from the book). He spends a lot of time in MPSIMS. Last seen in a thread about minute maids

The name in the book at least is Moon Child. Not so sure if it’s clear in the movie, but to me, it sounded similar.

Welcome to the board, little_fairy!

I searched Google for “Neverending story empress name” - apparently the answer is Moon Child

By the way, there is a forum on the Straight Dope specifically for discussions of books, movies, music… Cafe Society. You’d probably have gotten about a dozen responses already if you’d posted it there :slight_smile:

Off to Cafe Society.

DrMatrix - General Questions Moderator

That’s a bet you’d win…sort of.

The sound of Bastian calling out the name is almost obscured by the thunder sound effects and the soundtrack.

Since I’m severely-to-profoundly deaf, I have watched this movie with closed captioning a number of times.

For both the video and the DVD, in the scene where Bastian shouts out the name, the captioning reads only “[YELLING].” This doesn’t really help clear up the confusion.

I’m a better than average lip-reader, and for the purpose of this reply I took out the DVD and jumped to the scene to see exactly what Bastian yelled. I went so far as to go through the moment frame-by-frame, which is a relatively easy thing to do with most DVD players nowadays.

Conclusion: There is a flash of lightning at the moment Bastian begins calling the name, and there is no doubt in my mind that the first syllable of the name Bastian is calling starts with an “M.” The visime (visual phoneme) is unmistakable, and does not have a correlate with any other sound in English. The flash of lightning lasts long enough for me to see the beginning of the second syllable. The visime I see here correlates either with the “ch” sound or the “j” sound…both sounds have virtually identical appearances to a lip-reader…the difference is in the voicing, which is not always apparent to a lip-reader.

In my opinion, the vowel sound in the first syllable is ambiguous. It sounds a lot like the /u/ sound, as in “room”, but it could also be an accented /o/ sound, as in “roam.” Considering that Bastian speaks in a fairly neutral American accent throughout the movie, I’m more inclined to say that the vowel sound here is /u/.

The vowel sound in the second syllable is much clearer. It is the dipththong /ai/, as in “time”, which would be phonetically written (as best as I can render without the use of an IPA font): /taim/.

So in my mind, there are four distinct possibilities for the partial phonetic description of what Bastian shouted in the movie (Note–the phonetic alphabet’s designation for the English “ch” sound" somewhat resembles a blend of the letters “t” and “s”, and for the “j” as in “jelly” sound somewhat resembles a blend of the letters d and z.):

  1. /mu-- tsai–/
  2. /mo-- tsai–/
  3. /mu-- dzai–/
  4. /mo-- dzai–/

For comparison, “Moon Child” would be phonetically written as /mun tsaild/…again, my lack of an International Phonetic Alphabet font here means that the name wouldn’t appear exactly like that in an IPA font.

Given that the name “Moon Child” is what Bastian uses in the book, this leads me to favor the second possibility listed above as for what Bastian may have shouted. It seems to me that the movie did indeed use the name “Moon Child”, but took some steps to deliberately obscure what Bastian shouted.

How could his mom be named Moon Child? She wasn’t supposed to be an Osbourne. :slight_smile:

That’s the stupidest thing I’ve heard today.

I always thought he said “Sarah,” because he named her after his mom. I don’t know why I recall it like that, it’s been several years since I’ve seen it, but “Moon Child” doesn’t sound anywhere NEAR memorable.

I have a feeling in the movie, it was something a bit more “normal.”

I seem to recall that he planned on naming her the same as his mom.

This fits well with the the Oedipel (sp) complex he has in the film.

I assumed it was obscured deliberately so that we could all name her after our own mothers. That way, we’d be a part of the story much like the boy is.

Well, “Moon Child” is a direct translation of “Mondkind”. However, I’ve never heard that as a normal name in German either (and it doesn’t seem like one, although I’ve got the impression that it wouldn’t sound quite as silly). I’ve always wondered if it has the same ‘hippie’ connotation that it has in English. Any info, German dopers?

Oh,Zebra, give it a rest already. If you really think your bizarre theory has a leg to stand on take it to GD. Otherwise, quit trying to ruin one of my favorite movies from my childhood with your wierd Freudian complex.

Neverending Story: the GD Thread. Right.

I’m with Daniel on this one. Perhaps in the actual scene Bastian is yelling “Moon Child,” but I think they deliberately obscure it. I seem to recall that you never actually find out his mother’s name in the movie. What’s important isn’t what he names the princess, but that he names the princess after his mother.

But if the point really is that he named the princess “Moon Child,” than this movie has just taken another step down on the dumb scale as far as I’m concerned.

And why would it be dumb for the movie to follow the book more closely, praytell? The Neverending Story really was one of my favorite childhood books…

It’s not that it’s dumb for the movie to follow the book more closely, it’s that it’s dumb for the kid’s mother to be named “Moon Child,” and have him scream “Moon Child” out the window into the driving rain at what ought to be the climax of the flim.

But please don’t take offense, it’s just my opinion. I loved the movie when I was little, but I went back and watched it later and realized how awful it would be if not for the sentimental value.