Halloween Countdown: Day Five – Trolljegeren (Trollhunter)

From: October 6, 2011

I can’t possibly say enough about how awesome this movie is. I was afraid that there wouldn’t be enough Trolls, or that the whole thing would seem really cheesy. The title alone brings to mind the love-to-hate Troll 2 (1990), and my initial fear was that people would be running around in hairy bigfoot costumes. This was so not the case! There are plenty of quality effects here, and the plot also happens to be incredibly interesting. In a way, this is sort of your standard hero’s journey.

troll_hunter_blu_ray

The thing I initially  loved about Trollhunter was it’s modern take on the mythology of Trolls. As the film is Norwegian, the description leans more toward the Trolls of Norse mythology than the Trolls of children’s fairy tales (so, instant awesome). Far fewer are the anthropomorphized-bridge-dwelling-children eaters. Instead we are treated to animalistic massive beasts, who come out from the caves and woods to find food, or run away from the 200 foot Jotne (the big payoff critter). I generally shy away from CG effects, but the folks at Superrune did a fine job here. I can’t deny it. This is seriously monster quality on the level of the work being done in films like The Mist, The Host, an Cloverfield. In fact, I think the effects even surpass those of the aforementioned films. Using these sorts of effects can be incredibly tricky, so I am highly impressed to see anyone do such a fine job with digital enhancement. At any rate, I love living in the age of big-ass monster movies!

Unlike most films shot in home video style, Trollhunter also wastes very little time building useless plot. The crew doesn’t traipse around in the woods for thirty minutes while the audience waits impatiently for three seconds of creature. The Trolls appear rapidly, and in clear view. Viewers aren’t stung along in an attempt to garner emotional connections to the characters in the story. Director Andre Ovredal knows his audience, and provides them with exactly what they want! Though I will say that master troll hunter, Hans, is a pretty distinct and super-cool character. Fearless, literally.

Seriously, watch this movie. At the very least you can enjoy the breathtaking scenery of Norway, and the guttural language of its inhabitants. This is one of the better films I’ve seen in quite some time, and I hope to see more quality Horror/Fantasy coming out of Norway. I’m willing to wait of course, but I’d prefer it sooner than later.

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