I've been excited to see Trollhunter for quite a long time now. So excited in fact that when I saw that it was available to watch instantly, I did an actual giant fist pump into the air. Before we go any further, I would like to take you on a magical trip to back when I was a wee one. When I was a wee one, my sister and I had a pretty impressive Troll collection. Norfin Trolls that is.
We kept our trolls in a Norfin Troll lunchbox and we had such wonderful additions as the policeman Troll, the ballerina Troll and the clown Troll. I also had a few Troll picture books.
Yes, Trolls for some reason were the apple of my eye.
Perhaps that is why I felt an almost immediate connection to the found footage mockumentary out of Norway dubbed Trollhunter. That and because I had heard it was fantastic. Plus I love the idea of incorporating country specific folk lore into horror movies and doing it well.
Trollhunter, definitely does this well. Three film students set out to make a news expose on the illegal poaching industry of Norway and end up trailing who they think is a powerful poacher by the name of Hans. Hans stays out all night, has a car with visible claw marks and is surprisingly mum about his nighttime activities. One night when the crew follows Hans into the woods they find out that the mysterious man is not quite a poacher after all. He's a Trollhunter.
Mockumentaries are definitely becoming the new zombie fad of horror these days. Trollhunter however manages to stay interesting, original and just plan cool. Trolls are seldom spoken of these days and seeing these monstrous creations come to life in front of your eyes is truly a sight to see. The trolls are done entirely with CGI but it's a Jurassic Park level of CGI---one that makes you excited rather than skeptical. The CGI is well done and doesn't take away too much from the film. Rather than filling us with a sour note of disbelief, Trollhunter makes us feel like children again hoping that Trolls haven't migrated to the United States.
There's also plenty to be insanely wowed by here. The first sighting of a Troll, the details surrounding the cover up operation and the TSS forms that must be filled out after every Troll death.
The idea that Trolls can smell the blood of a Christian man,
the different species of Trolls, the giant Troll syringe....I could go on for hours.
One of the greatest and most stress filled moments however is when our film crew and Hans take a trip into a mine that has been an active house for a clan of Trolls. Despite the Trolls not being inside at the moment, we get a giant sense of worry as soon as our characters take their first steps inside. The monstrous cave is filled with splotches of blood and bones, Troll stenches galore and just bad feelings all around.
When the group starts hearing troll sounds off in the distance our bad feelings are thrown into overdrive. They almost make it out as we see one giant mountain troll, followed by another, another and another. Deciding the only thing to do is flee back into the cave, the group hides out in a small crevice as the troll clan sits in front of them unaware of the four humans invading their home. It's a moment filled with just the right amount of suspense and dread and it ends in one of the greatest ways ever.
To top all these great moments off, we find that there is no hero better than the Trollhunter himself--Hans. Hans is a quiet badass. The kind of badass that wears bulky sweaters and indestructible metal suits to claim blood samples from trolls, and hangs troll tails from his camper. Hans' character is so great and likable that he becomes an instant candidate for having his own poster in my bedroom.
Next to my other heroes--Snake Plissken,
ZAP from American Gladiators,
and Boba Fett.
In short, Trollhunter is a movie you will not want to miss. It's funny, scary at times, suspenseful, entertaining and just plain awesome. Sure, the Trolls may not be Norfin style with jewels in their belly buttons, but they are big and scary. Plus they smell and sometimes have three heads. Why would you not want to see this again?