The movie Troll Hunter is not a newly released film. It has been out since 2010, but it was one of those movies that I wanted to watch and just never got around to it.
Netflix gave this movie a star rating of three and a teeny tiny part of a fourth star, but I’m going to venture to say that it deserves four stars if geared towards the right audience.
The movie is about three college students investigating a series of illegal bear killings in order to track down a person they believe is an illegal poacher. What they discover instead is a window into a world where menacing trolls hide in the distant mountains of Norway.
You will like this movie if you’re a fan of Godzilla movies, King Kong movies, and anything that is documentary style with a science-fiction feel. You will not like this movie if you dislike subtitles. That’s right kids, this movie takes place in Norway and has English subtitles.
In order to better help you decide whether you want to watch this movie or not, let me give you some tidbits of information that may persuade you. First off, the special effects are not cheesy like I thought they would be. With a movie title like “The Troll Hunter”, a person almost expects a B movie plot, but I was happy to see early on that was not the case. The film cleverly embeds its special effects into a background of darkness and “night vision goggles”. What I mean by that, is that the trolls are only filmed at night. Why is that a good idea? Well, think about it, since we were all kids, we were always taught that bad things only go bump at night. The film feeds on that psychology.
Another thing I was wrong about is that I thought there would be a lot of gore in this movie. Not so at all. While the film does have one or two deaths, for the most part, it focuses on solving the mystery of why the trolls are venturing out from their territories and towards the human population. This film is great in that it takes itself seriously without the actors overacting. The characters don’t initially believe that trolls are real, however, they are not so stubborn that we as viewers are forced to shout at the screen, “Really, that thing is bearing down on your friend and you STILL don’t believe it’s real?!?” Instead, they adapt to their situation and allow their curiosity to push them into a situation where they ask questions about these mythical creatures. In fact, the characters ask the same questions that we, the viewers, probably would have asked.
If anything else fails and you’re watching the movie and you completely hate it, I suggest you focus on the scenery itself. The background is simply breathtaking. Beautiful plush greenery and snowcapped mountains fill the screen as our heroes walk along rugged rocks and worn trails. Nature surrounds us as the leader of the group reminds his counterparts that trolls are animals, mammals, and predators just like humans. The trolls are almost humanized in that we know they can experience pain, but we are also shown their voracious nature which reminds us that they are dangerous.
I know what you’re thinking…really Ana? You’re recommending a troll film to us? Next you’ll be recommending the movie Leprechaun! (I actually grew up on the Leprechaun movies, but that’s beside the point…) The truth is, with this kind of film, you just have to be in the mood to watch it. Like any film, you just have to have an open mind in order to appreciate it. I would say that this is a good movie to watch by yourself, no friends, no big crowds, just one of those late night-I’m not ready to go to bed yet-but I don’t want to watch anything super cheesy right now-nights. I think if you attempt to watch this movie with other people, you may get impatient with the plot, end up joking with your friends about it, and not really appreciate what the film has to offer.
If you’re curious about the movie, here is a trailer for it below. Thanks and I hope you enjoy it!