Movie Review: TrollHunter

9 Sep

I was fortunate enough to see this movie a week before commercial release at a special preview. I felt like there wasn’t anything incredibly new, or special about it but didn’t feel it was awful either.

The Blair Witch Project came out in 1999 and revolutionised the very tired and repeated horror franchise. Horror’s tend to be way too cheesy or unrealistic to scare us these days. What makes a horror scary is what it does to our mind, not how much blood and guts they show (a la Saw). Paranormal Activity scared many and was praised by critics for being a fresh horror.

TrollHunter is filmed in exactly the same style as The Blair Witch Project (three Norwegian filmmakers are following leads to an intriguing story) and presents itself as if it’s true but it’s called a mockumentary because this is fake. Shock, horror. The three filmmakers are investigating a serious of mysterious bear killings and find tracks that don’t look like normal bear tracks. They find a non-licensed bear hunter and think that he’s fishy. They then find out after following him (even though, he tells them not too and gets angry at them) that he’s hunting trolls, and he agrees to let them go with him. They find out secrets of these creatures and the Norweigan government.

I don’t know whether this is meant to scare people because it’s almost a parody. It tries to keep a straight face, and it tries to balance it as much as it can but at the core, it is much more witty than clever. There are some jokes where the movie is clearly making fun of itself. For instance, one of the plot lines is that the Trolls can smell the blood of a christian, so they can’t be christian because it’ll risk some damage, but they don’t know whether it can smell muslims. You can’t take that seriously!

As for the CGI, the film was done on a budget of around $3 million and I think they’ve done themselves proud with a budget that small. It’s no Avatar but the trolls have a very good design behind them but the execution of the CGI can faultier sometimes and they do vary but it’s not the worst in the world.

My main issue with the movie is that you know that the trolls exist, even if you haven’t seen the whole movie. It’s in the trailer! So once they get to the troll (around 40 minutes through) and find out that they’re real, theres not much to go through. You want to find out more about the trolls but after 10 more minutes I felt a bit ‘now what?’.

The acting is pretty good and does the job with a decent performance from the eponymous Trollhunter but the female filmmaker is pretty awful and seems to be laughing or smiling when the troll is chasing after her?

Look, this film is not brilliant. I don’t know whether you should be rushing out to your nearest cinema to catch it but perhaps a rental? It didn’t leave the strongest impression but if you’re into this kind of stuff you’ll like it. I’d recommend it to a certain person to rent.

Score: 3/5

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