Sunday, July 31, 2011
TrollHunter has been on my radar for many months now. As I've found out more about my interest slowly grew and grew until I was able to see it tonight thanks to a friend shelling out the $6 for the On Demand presentation.
This is a "found footage" movie, you know the kind- Some tragic event that was captured on a handheld video camera is presented in the point of view from the crew that usually have gone missing. These movies have become pretty prevalent since 1999's The Blair Witch Project. With very mixed results. TrollHunter is the story of a small film crew from a local college in Norway searching out a local bear poacher as the bear population of the country is tightly controlled. They quickly run into Hans (Otto Jespersen) who they believe to be the poacher. It doesn't take long to discover that is actually an aging, and jaded government worker who is out to control the troll population that is kept secret by the Norwegian government.
Hans allows the group to follow him in his confidential work because he's become fed up with his thankless job. The group does what any crew looking for their big break would do and subjects themselves to the dangers that various types of trolls bring. After several violent encounters that leave the crew battered and bruised, and down a man, Hans goes to find the giant troll in the snowy mountains that is the cause of all of the problems for a wild finale.
TrollHunter is briskly paced, getting from point to point with little down time in action or troll hunting. The acting is engaging and believable and the story, while silly on paper, is a great grown up fairy tale. The visuals are fun and at times breathtaking, with really great effects on the monsters themselves. The filmmakers did a great job in creating a diverse group of breeds with each having it's own characteristics and design. From the Mountain King to the Ringlefinch and the gigantic Jotner, Norway is infested. And I couldn't be happier about it because that was a fucking blast. I wish all fairy tales were this cool.