What is the meaning of the word "fubar", often used in Saving Pvt. Ryan?
Edit: saw the movie during a noisy train ride, didn't realize they explained the term to Upham.
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If I recall correctly the regular members of the troop use the fact that the new guy (Upham) and translator doesn't know what this means to tease him. Eventually Mellish takes pity (or maybe accepts him) and says the phrase really slowly and Upham gets it:
Mellish: Fucked up beyond all recognition.
According to imdb:
The term "Fubar", referred to several times in the film, stands for "Fucked Up Beyond All Recognition". In Spanish language it was translated as "Fomare", which means "FOllado y MAchacado sin REmedio" (fucked and crushed without a remedy).
Fubar is slang (mangled German) for the word "Furchtbar" which means terrible or horrible -- Think of it as the opposite of "Wunderbar." Furcht means fear, literally translated, and the "bar" is added to make it an adverb or noun, as the case may be. Notice that "Wunderbar" translates literally into wonderful. By contrast, you should treat Furchtbar as an idiom and translate it to mean terrible or horrible.
By the time our troops landed at Omaha Beach, D-Day (June 6, 1944), the term fubar had undergone a pejoration. The soldiers in Saving Private Ryan were probably contemplating the pejorative, anglicized acronym "fubar" which they would translate as "Fu***d Up Beyond All Recognition."