Director: Andre Ovredal
Writers: Andre Ovredal and Havard S. Johansen
Stars: Otto Jaspersen, Robert Stoltenberg, Knut Naerum
TrollHunter is a Norwegian film along the vein of The Blaire Witch Project, but there are differences. The main similarity is the premise that what you are watching is actual footage discovered in the wild, and no one knows what happened to all those involved. The differences are you see the monsters, the tone of the film has less freight and more levity, and the production value is 100 times better.
The director does an excellent job using the one camera approach, and you do buy into the belief that this could be actual footage. There are giveaways of course–too much light in the middle of the night and continuity errors within scenes. For the most part the movie is well paced. The first and third act are well constructed, but the body of the film becomes a little repetitive at times.
The story is clever and has humor. The main character, Hans (Otto Jaspersen), delivers great one-liners. But more importantly, you actually feel for the main character and the plight of the trolls. Hans has been doing his job as Troll Ranger for a long time. As the film goes on and you learn more about him, you learn why he doesn’t think of himself as a hero of Norway as one of the filmmakers states; he has done some heinous things–things that have robbed him of his soul. That’s not a small thing to accomplish for a Summer B-Movie, and TrollHunter does it well. The one weakness of the script–and what keeps this movie from being an “A”–is how easily the filmmakers get access to areas and people that no college level film crew should get access to.
As for the acting, it’s decent. I can’t say that I emotionally attached with any of them except Hans, but I did care how their situation ended in the film.
If this movie happens to play at your local art-house theatre, then go for it. If it doesn’t, then check-out the Netflix foreign film section and put it on your queue. The movie is not going to make you think, but you will enjoy a bag of popcorn with it.
Grade = B