As the world becomes smaller and smaller due to technological advances such as the web, it becomes more and more obvious that the first step to understanding another person is to understand their language. As movies allow for a snapshot of culture, and as they are becoming popular in lands that they were not produced for, the ability to translate the movie into a different language becomes more and more important. As media becomes more available to people throughout the world, video translation becomes more important.
At its simplest, video translation allows for a single piece of media to be understood by any group that it has been translated for. Most translators work from a script of the movie in order to ensure the best translation. They will also watch the movie in order to make sure that they have the connotations correct. From this they will re-write the script in the language that the video needs to be translated into, allowing for some cultural differences.
It is the cultural differences that can make translating a particular movie interesting for those involved. Translators get nervous around cultural issues, as they can make a simple translation into a more difficult one. With some languages it gets more interesting, as sometimes there is no straight translation from one language to another.
For example, insults are a major part of European languages, with a wide variety of curses. It is virtually impossible to speak any of the European languages without hitting some form of curse. When translating that into Japanese, which has almost no native curses, those curses need to be translated with an eye towards invoking the same emotion as was in the source material.
Translating from Japanese involves a number of cultural issues, as the culture is well represented in its language; it even has a verb tense to show respect towards others of a higher social status, which makes it interesting to maintain from one language to another. Fortunately most languages have the same basic concepts or translations would be almost impossible.
Video translation allows for movies and games to find a broader audience. As it does so, they allow for one culture to gain a better understanding of another. They allow for a greater appreciation of different cultures, especially if the translators do some research into the culture and allow for some of it to peek through. It may be an onerous job, especially in order to ensure that the translation is correct, but it is an important one, especially in a world that is getting smaller with every tweet and email.