Troll Parent Guide
This monster mash has less graphic violence than expected. It lacks originality but successfully delivers the monster movie formula genre fans expect.
Parent Movie Review
Despite public objections, work continues on a tunnel beneath Norway’s Dovre mountain to install a gas pipeline. As the workmen near the middle of the project, they blast a hole into a large cavern and awake a colossal monster. Standing hundreds of feet tall, the creature breaks out of the mountain and begins shambling towards Oslo, leaving destruction in its wake.
Dr. Nora Tidemann (Ine Marie Wilmann), a paleontologist, has been brought in by the Norwegian government to try to identify the creature could be, but she can’t think of anything in Earth’s history that makes sense. Her father, Tobias (Gard B. Eidsvold) has a solution, not from history but mythology: he believes the creature is a troll. If he’s right, ancient Norse legends might hold a clue to stopping the beast, but they’re going to need to convince the government that their idea is more than a fairy tale, and they’re going to need to do it fast.
Despite the Norwegian theme, this is a very typical kaiju movie – a Japanese term meaning “strange beast” which describes a whole genre of giant monster movies. Most famously, Godzilla. An ancient monster, awoken by human meddling in the environment, emerges to take revenge on the interlopers. The human characters are forced to accept a broader worldview but struggle to convince their authorities of the nature of the threat. Cities get stomped, infrastructure is pulled up like weeds, people get smooshed…you know the drill.
And apart from the Nordic setting, Troll doesn’t really add anything new to the formula. Sure, the titular beastie looks like a giant garden gnome, but the filmmakers haven’t been subtle with their influences. I’m pretty sure they boosted one of the scenes straight out of Kong: Skull Island, to go with the water glass shot from Jurassic Park they already lifted.
Originality issues aside, Troll is broadly suitable as family entertainment. Sure, a bunch of people get killed, but it’s mostly off screen or out of sight, since the scale is more focused on the 150-foot troll than some guy in a mid-sized sedan with the bad luck to be underfoot. There’s rather less profanity than you’d expect, with a complete absence of sexual content, drinking, or drug use. Die-hard genre fans are unlikely to be particularly impressed by the familiar ideas, but teen viewers exploring the genre might manage to have some fun. Heck, it’s hard not to have some fun watching a behemoth slug it out with municipal infrastructure, even if you have seen it a few times already.
Directed by Roar Uthaug. Starring Ine Marie Wilmann, Kim Falck, Mads Sjøgård Pettersen. Running time: 101 minutes. Theatrical release December 1, 2022. Updated December 2, 2022
Watch the trailer for Troll
Rating & Content Info
Why is Troll rated TV-14? Troll is rated TV-14 by the MPAA for fear, language, violence.
Violence: People are crushed or struck by a giant troll and killed.
Sexual Content: None.
Profanity: There are four scatological curses and infrequent uses of mild profanities and terms of deity.
Alcohol / Drug Use: None.
Page last updated December 2, 2022
Troll Parents' Guide
Monster movies are frequently a mirror for examining human behaviour. How do other kaiju movies explore human faults through the lens of giant monsters? How does this film compare? What lessons do we learns about the characters or society as a whole?
Related home video titles:
Fans of Western monster flicks should try Godzilla, Godzilla: King of the Monsters, Kong: Skull Island, Godzilla vs. Kong, Pacific Rim, Cloverfield, Rampage, King Kong, Tremors, or Jurassic Park. If you’re looking for a more Japanese flavor, one of my personal favorites is Shin Godzilla.