Troll Hunter – Review

TROLL HUNTER (2010) Trolljegeren 

Director André Øvredal. Writers: André ØvredalHåvard S. Johansen. Cast: Otto JespersenGlenn Erland Tosterud,Johanna MørckTomas Alf Larsen

C’mon, let’s just face it: the fake-documentary/found-footage genre which started off with the admittedly original Blair With Project, has probably been running its course for quite now while! Cloverfield sort-of worked for about half of its length, Paranormal Activity (which seemed to have scared everybody else but me) is a one-time-trick-type-of-film which felt a lot longer than it actually was, the last exorcism could have worked but was not only heavy-handed but also had one of the most terrible ending of recent memory, even the Spanish outing REC outstayed its welcome and actually went nowhere. In the end they all suffer from the shaky-cam exhaustion and from the fact that, being part of that found-footage genre, it’s pretty easy to see how they’re all going to end.

I had been hearing glorious things about “Troll Hunter” ever since the first screening in Norway last year. The trailer seemed intriguing enough and the first few reviews from several known newspapers here in the UK for some reason were all rather positive (I wonder if the film had been American whether it would have been embraced with as much warmth).

I must that say aside from the fairly good special effects, which nowadays don’t really surprise me anymore, I found it all rather predictable and actually quite boring.

Yes, the settings might be original (with those desolate, cold and yet glorious Norwegian landscapes) and there was a certain appeal about the way the director filmed everything in a certain matter-of-fact way as if this was all indeed a real documentary. I suppose there was an noble attempt to try to mix horror and comedy, but the main problem is that I didn’t find it particularly scary nor funny.

The concept is of course ludicrous and the Trolls are just way too silly looking to cause any real fear (in fact they are a lot more scary when they are just off camera), and as far as the comedy aspect is concerned, the jokes come much too late into the film and they are way too few (Well yes, the Muslim joke is rather enjoyable… but that was pretty much about it). Otherwise I felt I was left with a lot of running about in the forest (definitely too much for my taste) and not enough to care about.

Last but not least, even the big scary final Troll, instead of coming as a surprise is actually spoilt in the poster itself! Strange marketing campaign.


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