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Thursday, December 1, 2022

‘Troll’ Review – Netflix Kaiju Movie Is Slight on Story But Has a Monster-Sized Heart

Netflix’s Norwegian Kaiju feature, Troll, might draw easy comparisons to 2010’s Trollhunter for its Scandinavian roots and mythology, but it opts to adhere closer to Legendary Pictures’ MonsterVerse in plotting. While light on narrative, it’s when Cold Prey director Roar Uthaug embraces its monster that Troll reveals its magic.

A prologue sees a father tell his young daughter, Nora, of legendary trolls turned to stone, their bodies forming the mountainous peaks they look upon in awe. Twenty years later, Nora (Ine Marie Wilmann) outgrew her belief in magic and turned instead to science, now working as a paleontologist. While that means she’s been estranged from her folklorist father for years, it makes her well-suited to aid the government when an unknown destructive force of nature awakens.

Troll. (L to R) Mads Sjøgård Pettersen as Captain Kris, Kim S. Falck-Jørgensen as Andreas Isaksen, Ine Marie Wilmann as Nora. COURTESY OF NETFLIX © 2022

Troll, written by Espen Aukan with story by Uthaug, sticks to the conventional Kaiju format. The inciting event that alerts officials, the assembling of the rag tag team to understand what’s happening, and even the government and military deliberations over the best approach to snuffing out the threat to modern society all firmly settle the latest Kaiju entry into familiar territory.

It’s not just the MonsterVerse that Troll derives from; it draws heavily from the Jurassic Park franchise as well. Right down to Nora’s mid-celebration of uncovering a new dinosaur fossil when the government chopper arrives to retrieve her. Borrowed plot beats and dialogue stand out all the more with one-note characters. Our heroine teams up with archetypes in her bid to understand the giant troll’s presence. There’s her father, Tobias (Gard B. Eidsvold), the stalwart believer most chalked up as crazy. Kindhearted soldier Captain Kristoffer Holm (Mads Sjøgård Pettersen), the Prime Minister’s meek assistant Andreas Isaksen (Kim Falck), and nerdy tech whiz Sigrid (Karoline Viktoria Sletteng Garvang) round out the unlikely heroes’ team.

Netflix Troll review

Troll. Cr. Courtesy of Netflix © 2022

Where Uthaug compensates for the slight narrative is in the spectacle and the monstrous troll itself. The feature springs to life anytime the troll graces the screen. While Uthaug has an eye for visually interesting destruction set pieces and the troll’s visual effects are effective, it’s the way the filmmaker engenders empathy for his beast that becomes the film’s biggest asset. The more we discover about the troll, the more tragic its story becomes. There’s a melancholic subtext to be mined here about the ways in which old folklore and traditions get lost to time, eroding culture in the process.

It’s that sincerity that makes the final act so affecting, sending viewers off on a solid swell of emotion and dampening the sting of predictability. What Troll lacks in originality, it makes up for in fresh mythology. The leads are pleasant enough to get the job done, even if there’s not much to these characters. It’s well crafted and efficient in pacing, only briefly touching on requisite environmental concepts. It’s fun enough and does deliver on spectacle, but most of all, it leaves you rooting for its magnificent creature.

Troll debuted on Netflix on December 1, 2022.

The post ‘Troll’ Review – Netflix Kaiju Movie Is Slight on Story But Has a Monster-Sized Heart appeared first on Bloody Disgusting!.



source https://bloody-disgusting.com/reviews/3742109/troll-review-netflix-kaiju-movie-is-slight-on-story-but-has-a-monster-sized-heart/

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