"we already have watched his film" gives the same semantic meaning. What is wrong with it? I agree that "We have already..." is "better" English ;-)
I have read the previous comments, but still don't understand why the verb isn't the perfective посмотрели. Can anyone explain?
The difference is really subtle. “Посмотрели” implies that someone had recommended the film to you or made you promise that you will watch it. «смотрели» is used when you just want to inform somebody that you have seen the movie rather than confirm the fact. Another meaning of «мы уже смотрели» is “we were already in the process of watching”. This second meaning can only be expressed when the sentence is followed by a time clause. The implication will be «мы уже начали смотреть».
Thanks for the reply. In that case, посмотели seems to correspond to the British English "We watched", because we are thinking of a specific time, as in your example (it could also be when the film came out, or because it was on TV last night). "We have watched" could be at any time in the past. It would be interesting to know what you think.
In fact, «мы посмотрели» can be either “we watched” or “we have watched”, but, in the case of «мы уже посмотрели», only the latter is an option. Whether the Russian verb is perfective (посмотрели) or imperfective (смотрели), the presence of «уже» indicates the need to use Present Perfect in English. «Мы уже посмотрели» implies «You’ve been wondering if we have watched it - yes, we have”, whereas «Мы уже смотрели» will be appropriate as an answer to someone’s invitation to join them for watching the film. The implication may be that you have already seen it, but it’s been a while since you did.
"to see" is more translated as "видеть" (saw=видели). But the meaning видели=смотрели is the same in this (not others!) case so you can translate as you want.
How do you know that the film was finished at the moment that this person is talking about? How would you say: "We were already watching his film"?
"Мы уже смотрели его фильм."="We have already watched his movie."="We were already watching his film". The imperfective verb works more like "we [already] watched his movie".
"Мы уже посмотрели его фильм."="We have already watched his movie." only, that's for perfective verbs.
So, if I understand you correctly, "We were already watching his film" should be an acceptable translation (since no further context is given).
Not really, In the absence of further context, the implication is "We have already watched his film". The progressive meaning only comes into play when the sentence is followed by a clause desribing an event, e.g. Мы уже смотрели его фильм, когда она вошла в комнату. = We were already watching his film when she entered the room.
The accusative form would be фильму if the noun was feminine and the nominative form was фильма. And that indeed was the case in 1920's. Then the word changed its gender from feminine to masculine.
Since it wasn't accepted as the English translation for "Мы уже смотрели его фильм.", what would be the correct Russian translation for "We had watched his movie already."? In English this expresses the use of the past perfect (had watched) versus the present perfect (have watched).
Only the context will tell you whether "Мы уже смотрели" means "We have already watched" or "We had already watched"
Oh. So "We had watched his movie already." is an acceptable translation of "Мы уже смотрели его фильм."? I guess I should report this then.
Not really. The use of the past perfect tense is only justified in a longer sentence - for example, if watching the movie preceded another past action (Мы уже смотрели его фильм до того, как этот фильм показали по телевизору) or in a reported speech (Сестра объяснила, что мы уже смотрели его фильм). Unless another, later past event is involved, the present perfect tense should be used in the translation.
I read that perfective verbs are used when we talk about completely finished actions. Why not perfective here