I am using VLC.

Using VLSub I search for subtitles:

enter image description here

and get this error:

enter image description here

This happens with all *.sub subtitles. Is there a way how to read *.sub with VLC? I am using VLC 2.0.6 at Ubuntu 12.04.

EDIT: sample downloaded *.sub file (not mine)

Subtitles downloaded from www.OpenSubtitles.org
Ooh la la!
- Good morning, Mrs Miggins.|- Bonjour, monsieur.
- What?|- Bonjour, monsieur - it's French.
So is eating frogs, cruelty to geese and urinating|in the street, but don't inflict it on the rest of us.
But French is all the fashion!|My coffee shop is full of Frenchies,
and it's all because of that|wonderful Scarlet Pimpernel.
The Scarlet Pimpernel is not wonderful.
No reason to admire someone for filling London|with a load of garlic-chewing French toffs
crying "Ooh la la!" and looking for sympathy just|because their fathers had their heads cut off.
A cup of coffee|and some shepherd's pie, please.
We don't serve pies any more!|My French clientele consider pies uncouth.
I hardly think that a nation that eats snails,
and would go to bed with the kitchen sink if it put|on a tutu, is in any position to preach couthness.
- So what's on the menu?|- Today's hot choice is;
Chicken Pimpernel in a Scarlet Sauce,|Scarlet Chicken in a Pimpernel Sauce,
or Huge Suspicious-Looking Sausages|in a Scarlet Pimpernel Sauce.
- What exactly is Scarlet Pimpernel sauce?|- You take a large ripe frog, squeeze it...
Yes, all right. I'm off to the pub.
- Ah, bonjour, monsieur!|- Sod off.
Oh, sir! Poor little Mildred the cat!|What's he ever done to you?
It is the way of the world, Baldrick,|the abused always kick downwards.
I am annoyed, and so I kick the cat, the cat...
(A MOUSE SQUEAKS)|..pounces on the mouse, and, finally, the mouse...
- Agh!|- ..bites you on the behind.
- Well, what do I do?|- Nothing. You are last in God's great chain.
Unless, of course, there's an earwig around here|that you'd like to victimise.
- Baldrick, what's happened to your nose?|- Nice, innit?
No, it isn't. It's revolting.
I'll take it off, then.
Baldrick, why are you wearing a false boil?
What are we to expect next?|A beauty wart? A cosmetic verruca?
It's a Scarlet Pimple, sir.
- Really?|- Yeah, they're all the rage down our way.
Everyone wants to express their admiration|for the great Pimple and his brilliant disguises.
What has this fellow done, apart from|pop over to France to grab a few French nobs
from the ineffectual clutches of some|malnourished whingeing lefties,
taking the opportunity while there to pick up|some really good cheap wine
and some of their marvellous open fruit flans?
We hate the French! We fight wars against them!
Did all those men die in vain|on the field at Agincourt?
Was the man who burned Joan of Arc|simply wasting good matches?
Ah, His Royal Highness the Pinhead of Wales|summons me.
I feel almost well disposed towards him|this morning - at least he's not French.
Un tosst! Encore un tosst, I say!|Le Pimpernel Scsrlette!
Le Pimpernel Scsrlette!
Le Adder Noir! Come à nous in!
This is the fellow to ask, you chaps, my butler,|terribly clever, brighter than a brain pie.
We're trying to guess|who the Scarlet Pimpernel is,
so we can send him an enormous postal order|to express our admiration. Any ideas?
I'm sure if you addressed the envelope to "The|Biggest Show-Off in London", it will reach him.
Tish and pish! Gadzooks! Milarky!|How dare you say such a thing?
Damn me, sir,|if you're not the worst kind of swine!
Damn that swine.
I was merely pointing out|that sneaking aristocrats out
from under the noses of French revolutionaries,|is about as difficult as putting on a hat.
Sink me, sir! This is treason!
The Scarlet Pimpernel is a hero
and the revolution is orchestrated by a ruthless|band of highly organised killers, damn them!
Damn those organised killers.
George, we were just discussing the French|Embassy ball in honour of the exiled aristocracy.
We certainly were. Where I intend to wear|the most magnificent pair of trousers
ever to issue forth from the delicate hands|of messrs. Snibcock & Turkey,
Couturiers to the Very Wealthy|and the Extremely Fat.
If the Pimpernel does reveal himself, I don't want|to get caught out wearing boring trousers.
Damn those boring trousers.
What say we bet your cocksure domestic|a thousand guineas
he can't go to France, rescue an aristocrat,|and present him at the ball?
That's turned you white, hasn't it?
That's frightened you, you lily-livered,|caramel-kidneyed, custard-coloured cad.
- Not so buoyant now, are you, eh? Eh?|- Eh?
On the contrary, sir. I'll just go and pack.
Perhaps Lord Smedley and Lord Topper|will accompany me.
It'll be a fairly easy trip - the odd death defying|leap, and a modest amount of dental torture.
- Want to come?|- Oh, no! Damn!
Any day now,|I've got an appointment with my doctor.
I've got a bit of a sniffle coming on,|I can feel it in my bones.
Damn bones, damn...
What about next week? Come on, you chaps,|get your diaries out, come on.
All right. Damn! I left it behind.
And, besides, I've just remembered,|my father's just died.
I've got to be at his funeral in ten minutes.|Damn sorry. Goodbye, Your Highness.
Oh, damn, I'm the best man.|Damn that dead father, damn.
- Bye-bye...|- See you at the ball.
What a shame they were so busy. It would|have been lovely to have had them with us.
- Us? You're coming, sir?|- Well, certainly.
And nothing I can say about the mind-bending|horrors of the revolution could put you off?
Absolutely not!|Now, come on, Blackadder, let's get packing.
I want to look my best|for those fabulous French birds.
The type of women currently favoured in France|are toothless crones who just cackle insanely.
Oh, ignore that, they're just playing hard to get.
By removing all their teeth,|going mad and aging forty years?
That's right, the little teasers.|Well, come on, I think a blend of silks and satins.
I fear not, sir. If we are to stand|any chance of survival in France,
we shall have to dress|as the smelliest lowlife imaginable.
- What sort of thing?|- Well, sir, let me show you our Paris Collection.
(BLACKADDER):|Baldrick is wearing a sheep's bladder jacket,
with matching dung ball accessories,|hair by crazy Meg of Bedlam Hair.
Notice how the overpowering aroma|of rotting pilchards
has been woven cunningly into the ensemble.
When did you last change your trousers?
- I have never changed my trousers.|- Thank you.
The ancient Greeks wrote of a terrible container|in which all the evils of the world were trapped.
How prophetic they were.|All they got wrong was the name.
They called it "Pandora's Box", when, of course,|they meant "Baldrick's Trousers".
It certainly can get a bit whiffy,|there's no doubt about that.
When the box was opened, the whole world turned|to darkness because of Pandora's fatal curiosity.
I charge you now, Baldrick,|for the good of all mankind,
never allow curiosity|to lead you to open your trousers.
Nothing of interest lies therein.
It is trousers exactly like these that you will have|to wear if we are to pass safely into France.
Well, on second thoughts,|I think I might give this whole thing a miss.
My tummy's playing up a bit. Wish I could come,|but just not poss with this tum.
I understand perfectly, sir.
Also, the chances of me scoring|if I look and smell like him are zero.
That's true, sir.|We shall return presently to bid you farewell.
Mr B, I've been having second thoughts|about this trip to France.
Looking and smelling like this|there's not much chance of me scoring, either.
- Well, Blackadder, this is it.|- Yes, sir.
If I don't make it back, please write to my mother|and tell her that I've been alive all the time,
it's just that I couldn't be bothered|to get in touch with the old bat.
Well, of course, it's the very least I could do.
We must leave at once. The shadows lengthen and|we have a long and arduous journey ahead of us.
Farewell, dear master and, dare I say, friend.
Farewell, brave liberator, and dare I say it, butler.
- Right, stick the kettle on, Balders.|- What, aren't we going to France?
Of course not, it's incredibly dangerous there.
- Well, how are you going to win your bet?|- By use of the large thing between my ears.
Oh, your nose.
No, Baldrick, my brain.
All we do is lie low here for a week, then go to|Mrs Miggins', pick up any old French aristocrat,
drag him through a puddle, take him to the ball,|and claim our thousand guineas.
- What if the Prince finds us here?|- He couldn't find his own fly buttons.
What a pair of trousers!
I shall be the belle of the Embassy Ball.
Now, how to put them on? Blackadder!|Oh, no, damn, he's gone to France.
Well, I'll do it myself, shouldn't be too difficult.
Well, Baldrick, what a very pleasant week.|We must do this more often.
Yes, I shall certainly choose revolutionary France|for my holiday again next year.
Still, time to go to work. Off to Mrs Miggins'|to pick up any old French toff.
What do you think that is?
If I was feeling malicious, I'd say it's the Prince|still trying to put his trousers on after a week.
Ah, Mrs Miggins, I'd like a massive plate of pig's|trotters, frog's legs and snail's ears, please,
all drenched in your lovely|Scarlet Pimpernel Sauce.
- Not so hostile to the Frenchies now , Mr B.|- I'd sooner be hostile to my own servant.
In fact,|I came here specifically to meet lovely Frenchies.
Well, vive to that and an eclair for both of us!
Vive, indeed. Now, what I'm looking for|is a particular kind of Frenchie,
namely one who is transparently of noble blood|but also short on cash.
I've got just the fellow for you, over there|by the window, the Comte de Frou-Frou.
He's pretty down on his luck,|and he's made that horse's willy last all morning.
We have struck garlic!
- Now you can have some lunch, Baldrick.|- Thank you.
Le Comte de Frou-Frou, I believe.
- Do you speak English?|- A little...
What exactly do you mean? Can we talk|or are we going to spend the rest of the afternoon
asking each other the way to the beach|in very loud voices?
Ah, no. I can order coffee, deal with waiters,
make sexy chit-chat with girls,|that type of thing.
Just don't ask me to take a physiology class|or direct a light opera.
No, I won't. Now, listen, Frou-Frou,|would you like to earn some money?
No, I wouldn't.
I would like other people to earn it and then give|it to me, just like in France in the good old days.
This is a chance to return to the good old days.
Oh, how I would love that!|I hate this life! The food is filthy!
This huge sausage is very suspicious.|If I didn't know better, I'd say it was a horse's...
Yes, yes, all right.|Now, listen. The plan is this.
I have a bet on with someone|that I can get a Frenchman out of Paris.
I want you to be that Frenchman.
All you have to do is come to the embassy|with me, say that I rescued you,
and then walk away with fifty guineas and all|the vol-au-vents you can stuff in your pockets.
- What do you say?|- It will be a pleasure.
If there's one thing we aristocrats enjoy,|it's a fabulous party.
Oh, the music! Oh, the laughter!
If only I'd brought my mongoose costume.
Yes, well, obviously it hasn't really got going yet.
I think that is a bit of an understatement, I've|been at autopsies with more party atmosphere.
Don't worry! In a moment we will hear|the sound of music and happy laughter.
- Bonsoir, monsieur.|- Good evening, my man.
- Do you speak English?|- A little.
- Just take me to the Ambassador, then, will you?|- Pardon?
I have rescued an aristocrat|from the clutches of the evil revolutionaries.
Please take me to the Ambassador.
No, I won't.
I am an evil revolutionary
and I have murdered the Ambassador|and turned him into pâté.
And you, aristo-pig, are trapped.
Pig? Hah!|You will regret your insolence, revolutionary dog.
Dog? Hah!|You will regret your arrogance, royalist snake.
- Snake? Hah!|- Sorry to interrupt this interesting discussion.
But this is really none of my business,|so I think I'll be on my way. Come on, Baldrick.
Not so fast, English!
In rescuing this "boîte de stinkyweed"
you have attempted to pervert|revolutionary justice.
Do you know what they do to people who do that?
They're given a little present|and allowed to go free?
They're smacked and told not to be naughty,|but basically let off.
I think I know. They're put in prison for the night|and brutally guillotined in the morning.
Well done, Baldrick.
Your little gnome is correct, monsieur.
Gentlemen!|Welcome to the last day of your life!
How dare you, you filthy weasel.
Weasel? Hah!|You're one to talk, aristo-warthog.
- Warthog? Hah!|- Hah!
Excuse me, Frou-Frou.|Look, mate, me old mate...
We're both working class,|we both hate these rich bastards.
Come on, me old mucker,|just let me go, you've got nothing against me.
On the contrary.
I hate you English with your boring trousers|and your shiny toilet paper
and your ridiculous preconception|that Frenchmen are great lovers.
I'm French and I'm hung like a baby carrot|and a couple of petits pois.
Farewell, old mucker,|and death to the aristos!
- Death to the aristos!|- (BLACKADDER): Shut up, mousebrain!
Monsieur, why do you waste your words|on this scum? Have no fear!
- The Scarlet Pimpernel will save us.|- Hah! Some hope.
He's the most overrated human being since Judas|Iscariot won the A.D. 31 Best Disciple Competition.
Well, if he should fail us, here,|I have these suicide pills.
One for me, one for you,
and one for the dwarf.
- Say "thank you," Baldrick.|- Thank you, Mr Frou.
- Ah, the Pimpernel!|- (BALDRICK): Hurray!
Ah, the Ambassador, hurray...
Hmm, I've got nothing to do.
So I think I will torture...
..you, aristo-mongrel!
Mongrel? Hah!|I look forward to it, proletarian skunk!
Skunk? Hah!|We'll see about that, aristocratic happypotamus!
(FROU-FROU): Happypotamus? Hah!|We'll soon see who's the happypotamus.
I'm glad to say,|I don't think you'll be needing those pills, Mr B.
Am I jumping the gun, Baldrick,|or are the words "I have a cunning plan"
marching with ill-deserved confidence|in the direction of this conversation?
They certainly are!
Forgive me if I don't jump up and down with glee,|your record is not exactly a hundred percent.
- So, what's the plan?|- We do nothing.
Yep, that's another world-beater.
Wait, I haven't finished. We do nothing|until our heads have actually been cut off.
- And then we spring into action?|- Exactly!
You know how when you cut a chicken's head off,|it runs round and round the farmyard?
Well, we wait until our heads have been cut off,
then we run round and round the farmyard,|out the farm gate and escape.
- What do you think?|- My opinions are difficult to express in words.
Perhaps I can put it this way...
It doesn't really matter, 'cause|the Scarlet Pimpernel will save us, anyway.
No, he won't, Baldrick.|Either I think up an idea, or tomorrow we die,
which, Baldrick, I have no intention of doing,
because I want to be young and wild,|and then I want to be middle-aged and rich,
and then I want to be old|and annoy people by pretending that I'm deaf.
Just be quiet and let me think.
- (BALDRICK): I can't sleep, Mr Blackadder.|- (BLACKADDER): I said "Shut up"!
I'm so excited to think that the Scarlet Pimpernel|will be here at any moment.
I wish you'd forget this ridiculous fantasy.|Even if he did turn up, the guards would be woken
by the scraping noise as he tried to squeeze|his massive swollen head through the door.
- I couldn't sleep when I was little.|- You still are little, Baldrick.
Yeah, well, when I was even littler, see,|we used to live in this haunted hovel.
Every night, my family were troubled|by a visitation from this disgusting ghoul.
It was terrible.|First there was this unholy smell,
then this tiny, clammy, hairy creature|would materialise in the bed between them.
Fortunately, I could never see it myself.
Tell me, Baldrick, when you left home,|did this repulsive entity mysteriously disappear?
- That very day.|- I think then, that the mystery is solved.
Now shut up.
Either I think up an idea,|or tomorrow we meet our maker.
In my case, God. In your case, God knows,
but I'd be surprised|if he's won any design awards.
- (BLACKADDER): I thought of a plan!|- (BALDRICK): Hurray!
(BLACKADDER):|Also, I thought of a way to get you to sleep.
Morning, scum. Did we sleep well?
Like a tot, thank you. But, by jiminy, you must|be feeling thirsty after your long night's brutality.
- Drink?|- Non, merci, not while I'm on duty.
Perhaps later.
For you, monsieur, there is no later.
Because gentlemen, I am proud to introduce|France's most vicious woman,
unexpectedly arrived from Paris this morning.|Please welcome Madame Guillotine herself!
- Are these the English pigs?|- Yes, that's us.
Leave them with me, Monsieur Ambssssdeur.
I intend to torture them|in a manner so unbearably gruesome,
even you will not be able to stand it!
- I don't think I will have a problem, madame.|- You will be sick.
- I'll leave if I'm feeling queasy.|- You will be sick immediately.
What if I am sick quietly, in a bag?|I mean, what is in your mind?
So! Scum!
Prepare to be in pain!
Yes, certainly.|But first, perhaps, a toast to your beauty.
Oh, thank you. OK.
I expect you were expecting to be rescued, huh?!
Some bloody hope...
(GUILLOTINE, NOW WITH A MALE VOICE):|On the contrary! I'm just sorry I'm so late.
- Gentlemen, I have come to take you to freedom!|- Hurray!
My God! Smedley!|But I thought you were an absolute fathead.
No, just a damn fine actor!
Thank God I got here before you took|any of those awful suicide pills!
I suppose, if someone had taken one and wished|he hadn't, he'd be able to do something about it.
No, no, they're very odd things, you see.
The symptoms are most peculiar. First of all,|the victims become very, very depressed.
Oh, God!
This whole revolution is so depressing,|I mean, sometimes I wonder why I bother.
- I'm so lonely, and nobody loves me...|- And after the depression comes death?
No, after the depression|comes the loss of temper, you stuck-up bastard!
What are you staring at?!
And after the temper comes death?
No! After the temper comes the, er...
- ..comes the, er...|- Forgetfulness?
- Er, yes, that's it. Er, comes the, er...|- Forgetfulness.
Yes, yes. Right in the middle of a thingy...
..you completely forget what it was you...|Oh, nice pair of shoes!
- And after the forgetfulness, you die?|- Oh, no! I forgot one!
After the forgetfulness|comes a moment of exquisite happiness!
Jumping up and down,|and waving your arms in the air,
and knowing that in a minute|we're all going to be free! Free! Free!
- And then death?|- No, you jump into a corner first.
- Hurray! It's the Scarlet Pimpernel!|- Yes, Baldrick.
- And you killed him!|- Yes, Baldrick.
What's the bloody point|of being the Scarlet Pimpernel
if you're going to fall|for the old poisoned cup routine?
Scarlet Pimpernel, my foot.|Scarlet Git, more like it.
- Wait! Here's our chance to escape!|- But what about Mr Frou?
Forget Frou-Frou.|I wouldn't pick my nose to save his life.
Ah, Frou-Frou, my old friend and comrade,|what are you doing here?
- I escaped! What happened here?|- Oh, er, nothing, nothing.
I thought for a moment|the Scarlet Pimpernel had saved you.
Ah, chaps, good to see you.|Just trying on the new trousers.
I return, sir, as promised, plus one toff French|aristocrat fresh from the Bastille.
Pleased to meet you, monsieur. Do sit down.
Damn sorry about the revolution,|most awfully bad luck.
Blackadder, how the devil did you get him out?
It's an extraordinary tale of courage and heroism
which I blush from telling myself,|but seeing as there's no one else...
I could try.
We left England in good weather,|but that was as far as our luck held.
In the middle of Dover harbour,|we were struck by a tidal wave.
I was forced to swim to Boulogne with|the unconscious Baldrick tucked into my trousers.
Then, we were taken to Paris, where I was|summarily tried and condemned to death,
and then hung by the larger of my testicles|from the walls of the Bastille.
It was then that I decided I had had enough.
I rescued the Count, killed the guards,|jumped the moat, ran to Versailles
where I climbed into Mr Robespierre's bedroom,|leaving him a small tray of milk chocolates
and an insulting note. The rest was easy.
That is an incredible story,|worthy of the Scarlet Pimpernel himself.
I wouldn't know.
I, on the other hand, would.
Because, you see, sir...
..I am the Scarlet Pimpernel.
- Uh oh...|- (BALDRICK): Hurray!
- Good Lord! Topper!|- Yes, Your Highness.
By egads and by jingo with dumplings, steak and|kidneys, and a good solid helping of sprouts,
I can't believe it! You're the fellow|who single-handedly saved all those Frenchies?
Not quite single-handedly, sir.|I operated with the help of my friend, Smedley,
but he seems to have disappeared|for the moment, slightly mysteriously.
- Shut up, Baldrick.|- Yes, Mr Blackadder.
So Blackadder rescued the Scarlet Pimpernel.
No, sir, he did not.
Prepare yourself for a story of dishonour|and deceit that will make your stomach turn.
This is interesting, isn't it, Blackadder?
Not only that, but I trust|it will lead to the imprisonment of a man
who is a liar, a bounder, and a cad.
Well, bravo, because we hate liars,|bounders and cads, don't we, Blackadder?
Generally speaking, yes, sir.
But perhaps before Lord Topper starts to talk,|he might like a glass of wine.
- He's looking a little shaken.|- Shaken, but not stirred.
It all began last week.|I was sitting in Mrs Miggins' coffee shop when...
Oh, God!
All this treachery is so depressing.
I mean, the whole thing|just makes you incredibly angry!
And it just makes you want to...
Oh, that's a nice waistcoat, Your Majesty.
I'm sorry,|I've completely forgotten what I was talking about.
A story of dishonour and deceit...
That's a great story! That's great!
Oh, that's a wonderful story!|Let me just jump into the corner first.
Roast my raisins! He's popped it!
Do you think he really was the Scarlet Pimpernel?
Well, judging from the ridiculous ostentatiousness|of his death, I would say that he was.
Well, that's a damn shame, because I wanted|to give him this enormous postal order.
Please, sir, let me finish.|I would say that he was...n't .
You see, the Scarlet Pimpernel would never ever|reveal his identity. That's his great secret.
So what you're actually looking for|is someone who has, say, just been to France
and rescued an aristocrat, but when asked,|"Are you the Scarlet Pimpernel?",
he replies, "Absolutely not".
But, wait a minute!|Blackadder, you've just been to France,
and you've rescued a French aristocrat.
Blackadder, are you the Scarlet Pimpernel?
Absolutely not, sir.
Best watched using Open Subtitles MKV Player
  • 1
    Could you upload a sample *.sub file? – evilsoup Jan 6 '13 at 20:37
  • evilsoup: added one – mreq Jan 6 '13 at 20:41
  • 3
    That doesn't look like any subtitle file I've ever seen... normally they have some kind of timestamp next to each line, to tell the video player when the line should be displayed. I'm afraid I suspect that the answer is going to be 'get better subtitles'. The most common subtitle files will end with *.srt or *.ass (or *.ssa), and both of those would be supported by VLC. – evilsoup Jan 6 '13 at 20:52

Where did you get these .SUB files from? There are two .SUB subtitle formats. The first is the text-based MicroDVD .SUB, and the second is the image-based VOBsub .SUB+.IDX. VLC can handle both AFAIK.

Comparing what you've posted above with the sample linked to from Wikipedia, it's clear that you've laid your hands on corrupted MicroDVD .SUBs, with the very important and necessary {start-frame}{stop-frame} timing information deleted from the beginning of every line.

  • All 3 were downloaded through VLSub from opensubtitles.org. Will have to find a better way to find subtitles. Thanks for the explanation. – mreq Jan 7 '13 at 9:10

First, try renaming the subtitle file to have a .srt extension. If this fails, it is likely that the subtitle file is corrupt. There is little you can do about this.

  • Renaming didn't help. As for to corruption: I don't think that all the .sub I tried are corrupt. – mreq Jan 6 '13 at 20:42
  • Hum. I'm not sure, but looking at the file contents provided, they don't seem useful - there's no way for the player to tell when to display each line. As far as VLC's concerned, then, that is a corrupted file; it's missing the essential timestamps. – Darael Jan 6 '13 at 20:59
  • That's exactly it. those are not valid subtitle files. – Justin Jan 6 '13 at 22:12

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