“The Troll Hunter” is a movie that tries to convince us that it’s real, but knows that we won’t believe it. It starts and ends with statements that all of the footage in between is 100% genuine and has not been tampered with. However, all of the footage in between is fantastical and silly, and sometimes deliberately humorous in tone; the statements of factuality are clearly a joke that we are intended to be in on.
Much like last week’s “Apollo 18,” the film is presented to us through a found-footage format, i.e. it’s filmed by the characters within the film. Unlike “Apollo 18,” this format feels natural to the film’s story. I also feel that “The Troll Hunter” would not benefit from being filmed “normally,” as opposed to “Apollo 18,” where the format was annoying.
Originally titled “Trolljegeren,” the film is Norwegian and written and directed by André Øvredal. It’s relatively low-budget and is both a comedy and a horror. As the title may have already informed you, the film revolves around a hunter of trolls; yes, apparently trolls exist, and they’re very, very dangerous.
However, the film does not initially revolve around trolls. It begins as a documentary investigating the mysterious shootings of local bears, filmed by college students Thomas (Glenn Erland Tosterud), Johanna (Johanna Mørck) and Kalle (Tomas Alf Larsen). The suspected bear poacher is Hans (Otto Jespersen), a bearded loner travelling around in a jeep and a caravan.
Our three protagonists begin secretly following and filming Hans, who refuses to answer any of their questions. One night, Hans goes deep into the woods, with Thomas, Johanna and Kalle in close pursuit. What they discover is that Hans is not actually hunting bears; he’s hunting something much, much bigger. Spoiler: he’s hunting trolls. (Continue Reading)
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