When I first heard the title of the film that we were going to watch, I got a bit excited because I thought it would be a fun and adventurous type of film with a slight hint of comedy in it. A few minutes into the movie, I found myself slightly disappointed to see that it was a found footage mockumentary type of movie. I think this was my first time watching a film in this genre and although it’s creative and witty in the sense that it tries to appear as if it were a real phenomenon since it’s supposedly a found footage, I don’t think I could say that I’m a fan of it. Some of the scenes were difficult to watch because of the shaky recording and for a time, a broken camera. The CGI also wasn’t very convincing that the trolls were real.
Nonetheless, Trollhunters was still somewhat interesting given that it’s a fictional movie with a bit of a suspense factor that made me want to know what would happen next to the characters. I also didn’t know anything about Norwegian culture and folklore, so I got curious about the trolls and the associations and descriptions that came with them. One of the troll “facts” that surprised me was that they can apparently smell Christian blood. I got curious as to why they specifically could smell Christian blood, so I researched more on it and found that apparently, trolls are demonic entities cast out by God into the darkness and that’s why they only become alive at night. Because of this, trolls developed a grudge against God and His Christian believers. Pretty cool. Although I didn’t feel any personal connection or engagement with the film, (probably because I didn’t understand its history or context especially that of the trolls) it still found a way to piqued my interest. Throughout the film and even afterwards, I found myself thinking: Why were trolls so special? Where did the idea come from? Are they our version of the duwende, the aswang, the kapre? The film urged me to get to know not just Norwegian folklore, but also their history and other cultural practices.
Overall, the film was a good break from the previous films we’ve seen that were more symbolic and weren’t as straightforward with its storyline as this one is, especially coming from watching Holy Motors which was admittedly a very difficult experience for me. While Holy Motors “wasn’t meant to be understood,” this one definitely was. It was entertaining and some parts were exciting, and I appreciate how the film tried to be as authentic and real as it could be. If there’s anything that left me in awe in the movie, it would definitely be the beautiful scenery and landscapes of Norway. The place has always been in my bucket list for my future travels and the film just made me want to see those vast lands for myself all the more someday in the future.