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You think a squirrel rampaged through here?


Troll Hunter
(2010)

I'm not keen on the "found footage" concept, which always seemed a tired and faintly dull starting point for a movie even before Blair Witch proved the point. But Andre Ovredal's Norwegian film finds a suitably absurd hook to keep the viewer interested. A video crew teaming up with the titular character - Hans (Otto Jespesren) - at first finding the idea that trolls might exist ridiculous and then are increasingly taken with the earnest hunter's quest as the evidence stacks up.

The idea wouldn't be enough on its own, though; it's Jespersen's straight-faced leading of the crew into peril whilst recounting his history with the creatures that makes this so enjoyable. The picking and choosing of troll mythology for the "facts" about the creatures is frequently very funny, not least their hunger for Christians (at one point Hans plays "What a friend I have in Jesus" through loudspeakers to attract a troll, at another there is speculation over whether a Muslim will escape their attentions). 

The design of the trolls themselves is at once cartoonish and disconcerting, the mashing together of raw video with absurdity proves surprisingly effective.

***1/2

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