To all Chinese speakers out there, I have a question:

It so happened I had to subtitle a Chinese movie. The movie itself was spoken in Chinese but it had English subtitles burnt on screen, and I had to translate those subs into Spanish.

Now, I felt most times it took a lot more time to say something in Chinese when compared to English. But when a character was in a rush, or they decided to speak particularly fast, they seemed to convey a lot of meaning in just under a second, something that in English needed maybe 2 or 3 seconds.

So, I was confused, can you convey the same meaning shortening phrases drastically? By means of intonation maybe? I certainly couldn't explain that!