Director: Andre Ovredal (2010)
Starring: Otto Jespersen, Glenn Erland Tosterud, Johanna Morck
Find it: IMDB
Students making a documentary find more than anticipated when the man they're trailing is revealed to be a 'troll hunter'. Keyboard warriors rest easy; he's after the other type of troll. Fairytale Trolls roam the Norwegian woods and countryside, looking for Christian men to munch upon. Hans (Jespersen) is part of a government conspiracy, ensuring that the Trolls stay within their designated areas. It's like Men in Black meets Cloverfield.
It's films like Troll Hunter with which the found footage subgenre shines. I have little interest in seeing middle class people being scared in their own homes, or in snotty kids being chased around ugly woods by unseen Blair Witches. I want to see the Moon (even when it's as half-arsed as Apollo 18), jungles full of cannibals and above all, I want to see Norwegian Trolls eating men dressed in tin suits. Fairy tale Trolls, that is. Although I would definitely watch a movie about a killer who hunts people that go around talking shit on Internet message boards. The Dark Knight Rises looks whack, does it? How would you like an axe in the face? It'd basically be The Punisher, except his victims are mostly children and me.
The locations are breathtakingly beautiful. Landscape fetishists should take great joy in Troll Hunter. It's certainly better than crappy old New York in Cloverfield. And then the Trolls appear, and that's incredible too. They look too unreal to ever be scary (like something out of that old PS2 game that nobody played), but there's a fairytale quality to the dodgy CGI that somehow befits the film. You won't quite believe it when you see it, but you'll really want to.
As our intrepid filmmakers follow Hans the hunter (think Quint from off've Jaws) on his travels, they encounter a number of Trolls, all beautifully designed and great to watch. The standout sequences see a Troll hiding under a bridge (how very Billy Goats Gruff), farting in a cave and a thrilling final bit with the biggest Troll of all.
Unfortunately, there are a few too many scenes which see the cameraman running through pitch-black forests, huffing and puffing like a paedophile in the kids' section at Primark. There's a character introduced too late into the film that slightly upsets the status quo (apparently Rossi was really unhappy with it) and the ending is a trifle predictable. Atheists will come away feeling smug though (oh, we come away feeling smug about everything) and it really is a beautiful film. Where the Blair Witches and The Cloverfields and the [RECS] have you feeling terrified to go back into the woods/New York/Barcelona, Troll Hunter will leave you disappointed by the lack of real Trolls there. Also, it has 'Teddy Bear's Picnic' on the trailer, and that gives me a warm feeling inside. Aaw.