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Film / Troll 2

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Yes. Yes, it was.

"They're eating her. And then they're going to eat me. OH MY GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOD!"

Troll 2 (originally titled Goblins) is a 1990 In Name Only and unofficial sequel to the 1986 B-movie Troll. Note that not a single troll appears in the film, nor is the word "troll" spoken once. There are two different films called Troll 3, and neither have much to do with either Troll or Troll 2.

Here's the movie in a nutshell:

The Waits family goes to a village called Nilbog, unaware that the townsfolk are actually trolls goblins; specifically, 'vegetarians', who would try to get their vic... guests, to eat their all-vegetable food, which would turn their victims into a "half man, half plant" troll goblin food. It is up to the Waits' son, Joshua, who can communicate with his dead grandpa, Seth, to save his family from the trolls goblins before his family becomes troll Goblin Chow.

Troll 2 has been dubbed the "Best Worst Movie Ever Made" by its fans and has gained a cult following over the years. Little Joshua grew up and made a documentary about the movie and its fan base.


This film provides examples of:

  • All Trolls Are Different: More like "All Troll Movies Are Different." The only real connection between the three "primary" Troll movies is a weird focus upon plants; Troll 1's troll turned people into plant-pods to spawn more trolls, Troll 2's goblins turn humans to plants (and then eat those plants), and Troll 3 (the one also called "Creepers") was about killer radioactive tree roots.
  • Alternate DVD Commentary: Unsurprisingly, it's gotten the RiffTrax treatment.
  • Always Chaotic Evil: "That's the point. Goblins don't need to justify their cruel acts. They're evil creatures."
  • Ambiguously Bi: Creedence, who describes Holly as 'appetizing'. She probably just wants to eat people, but the implication is there.
  • And I Must Scream: Arnold is unable to move or speak when he is turned into a plant until the bark is pulled off his face. Rather than trying to dig him out of the planter his feet are stuck in, his friend decides to just try to drag the planter to safety.
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  • Aside Glance: Creedence does a very slooooow and overdramatic one of these.
  • As You Know: When Mrs. Waits is talking to Joshua at the beginning, she feels to need to mention that Grandpa Seth was her father.
  • Aluminum Christmas Trees: In some countries, especially Europe, milk that can keep unrefrigerated actually is sold. However, Troll 2 takes place in the US. Perhaps the Italian director had something to do with the discrepancy in the movie.
  • Author Tract: Specifically written as an anti-vegetarian film. The screenwriter called it "a ferocious analysis of today's society."
  • Awesome Mc Coolname:
    • Credence Leonore Gielgud (of ancient Druid origins!). Her ancestors came from Stonehenge!
    • Sheriff Gene Freak.
  • Badass Grandpa: Being dead doesn't stop Grandpa from stopping time, throwing lightning bolts, chopping goblins up with an axe, bitchslapping them, or making molotov cocktails.
  • Baleful Polymorph: Arnold's Transflormation.
  • Big Bad: Creedence Leonore Gielgud.
  • Big Good: Grandpa Seth who has the creepiest smile for a Big Good.
  • Big "OMG!": And watch for a fly that appears on Arnold's forehead between cuts.
  • Body Horror
  • Bumbling Dad: Michael Waits, though it's not clear if that's how the character was written or if George Hardy's wooden performance makes him come off that way.
  • Camp: Oh, God, the camp. There are two things people use as the best example for camp: Silver Age Batman and this. Deborah Reed's performance in particular.
  • Campbell Country: One thing the film genuinely has going for it is the intriguing novelty of a Mountain West setting for a horror story. Unfortunately, its many issues detract from that.
  • Can Only Move the Eyes: Arnold, when he's paralyzed by Creedence, and later gets turned into a plant.
  • Cassandra Truth: Joshua telling his dad about how the people were really goblins who wanted to turn him into a plant so they could eat him.
  • Chewing the Scenery: Deborah Reed seems to be the only actor enjoying herself.
  • Corrupt Hick: Goblins in disguise.
  • Covers Always Lie:
    • The original VHS cover features a goblin (or perhaps a troll?) that looks nothing like the creatures in the movie, menacing a boy who is clearly not Joshua, who's holding a significant-looking evil troll doll that never appears in the movie. That said, it does look pretty damn cool, and is probably a significant reason for the film gaining an audience. Every word of text on it is also totally unrelated to the movie; the actual film has nothing to do with "the original boogieman", nothing to do with haunting you in your sleep, there isn't even one singular "it", and, of course, there's no trolls.
    • A DVD release of Troll and Troll 2 on one disc provides mostly accurate plot summaries for both movies, but attempts to hide the fact that the two have nothing to do with each other by referring to trolls and goblins in both summaries.
  • Cruel Twist Ending: The ending seems to have been an attempt at this: while the protagonists believe the Goblins are gone for good, a group of them abruptly come to their house and eat the mother. It was a bit too hard to understand to really be effective.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Grandpa Seth, who as a spirit has a "kingdom of shadows", is generally associated with poor lighting, and is told to go "back to hell". Not to mention he's named after the evil trickster-god of Egyptian mythology. Despite all of this, he's the caring Big Good.
  • Dead Person Conversation: The very first scene.
  • Diabolus ex Machina: The Nilbog Goblins may have been destroyed, but another group of them (presumably those who normally live in the house the protagonists were renting?) come back to the protagonist's house to eat his mom.
  • Don't Make Me Take My Belt Off: Spoofed. The dad initially seems like he's going to beat Joshua, but instead tightens his belt.
  • Downer Ending: Our heroes destroy the goblin army and escape Nilbog. They go back home, but the goblins are waiting. The film ends with Joshua entering his kitchen and finding the goblins eating his mother.
  • Double Aesop:
    • Vegetarians are evil. Rossella Drudi (the woman who wrote the script, and director Claudio Fragasso's wife) apparently got the idea by being annoyed at how many of her friends had recently become vocally vegetarian. Take that as you will.
    • If you want to have sex, get rid of your friends. There's a really weird idea running through the movie that Elliot and Holly can only be happy — and her family will only accept him — if he breaks all other ties to everyone else in the world. The intention was probably just that everyone thinks his friends are morons and he's better off without them (which is true), but this is very poorly conveyed to the audience.
  • Dull Surprise: Arnold's reaction to being turned into a plant, and how Brent responds to Hotter and Sexier Creedence.
  • Eaten Alive: See page quote.
  • Enter Stage Window
  • Erotic Eating: The scene with Creedence and the corncob was probably intended to be this. In-universe it seems to work; to the viewer... not so much.
  • Fanservice: Creedence in Hot Witch mode. Yowza.
  • Fantastic Aesop: Only the power of goodness can defeat the goblins. Of course, a double decker baloney sandwich always helps.
  • Faux Affably Evil: All the people of Nilbog. They're hospitable and polite to their guests, but really, they just want to turn them into vegetables (literally) and eat them.
  • Forgotten Fallen Friend: By the end, Elliot doesn't seem to learn what happened to his friends, nor does he seem to care.
  • Hollywood Darkness: When the family first arrives in Nilbog, Michael comments that the stores are closed because everyone's gone to bed for the night; the scene looks like it takes place at noon.
  • Human Resources: It's easy to miss it because the sound-mixing is poorly done, but Arnold gets turned into a milkshake and fed to Drew.
  • Incoming Ham: "This is myyyyyyyyyyyy house!"
  • Ironic Echo: "Do you want some, Joshua?"
  • It Makes Sense in Context: The ghost of the grandfather stops time to allow the protagonist to urinate on his family's dinner.
  • It May Help You on Your Quest: Grandpa Seth hands Joshua a double-decker baloney sandwich in the last 5 minutes of the film, saying "take this, and only use it when you really need it".
  • Kubrick Stare: An epic one by Don Packard at the end of his scene. It helps he is schizophrenic and off his meds during the scene.
  • Landmark of Lore: The goblins' source of power is the Stonehenge Magic Stone.
  • Large Ham: They may be vegetarians, but Creedence, the General Store Owner, and the Preacher are pretty hammy. Sheriff Freak starts to swallow the scenery whole towards the end, too.
  • Magic Countdown: 30 seconds of frozen time last for close to a minute of screen time.
  • Makes Just as Much Sense in Context:
    • The scene where the grandfather stops time was never set up, and this ability was never spoken of again; it'd be a Big-Lipped Alligator Moment, except that it's crucial to the plot.
    • The corn scene. Why was it there?
  • Man on Fire: Preacher Bells after Grandpa Seth ignites the Molotov Cocktail he confiscated.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Creedence. Attempted with Holly, but she's a gawky sixteen-year-old, so it's weird.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: "I'm Sheriff Gene Freak."
  • New Powers as the Plot Demands:
    • Grandpa Seth can come back from the dead, freeze time, and summon the power of lightning, whenever it is convenient to do so.
    • Likewise, it's established that everyone focusing their goodness on the Stonehenge Magic Stone will kill all the goblins. Except apparently some of them survive for the Cruel Twist Ending.
  • Nonindicative Name: The title. The film is neither about trolls nor a sequel to Troll.
  • Not Using the "Z" Word: They're goblins, not trolls.
  • Numbered Sequels: Averted. Troll 2 is a standalone film that has no in-universe or real world connection to Troll besides the title.
  • Obviously Evil: None of the goblins disguised as humans make any attempt to act non-suspicious.
  • Oddly Named Sequel 2: Electric Boogaloo: The proposed follow-up Troll 2: Part 2.
  • Our Ghosts Are Different: Grandpa Seth, as noted above, doesn't seem to obey any particular rules as to what he can do or how he can appear in the mortal realm. He can shoot lightning, stop time, appear corporeal or incorporeal and bring back various weapons from the afterlife, including an axe and a molotov cocktail. Really, he could just kill all the goblins himself.
  • Our Goblins Are Different: In this movie they can transform into anything and eat plant-turned humans.
  • Overcrank: Used when Preacher Bells burns to death.
  • Planimal: The goblins turn people into edible plantmen, because they are vegetarians.
  • Posthumous Character: Grandpa Seth.
  • Rasputinian Death: Drew is fed a Nilbog sandwich by Sheriff Gene Freak, which makes him drowsy and limping, then he drinks some Nilbog milk, which still doesn't turn him into goblin food. Finally, he's fed an Arnold shake by Creedence, and it's heavily implied that this is what finally did him in.
  • Red Right Hand: While the goblins' human forms look normal enough, they bare a clover leaf on their faces that gives away their true nature.
  • Sacred Hospitality: You can't piss on it. I WON'T ALLOW IT!
  • Satiating Sandwich: "A double-decker bologna sandwich!"
  • Sdrawkcab Name: "Nilbog! It's goblin spelled backwards! This is their kingdom!"
  • Selective Obliviousness: While his family catches every little thing Joshua does, they don't find anything the least bit strange about the Obviously Evil people they're surrounded by.
  • Sinister Minister: Yeah, so it turns out that goblins are evangelical Protestants.
  • Spirit Advisor: Grandpa Seth, when he isn't taking matters into his own hands and dispensing justice to the goblins with his nebulously-defined ghost powers.
  • Stuffed into the Fridge: The goblins eat the mom and then offer some to Joshua. That's cold.
  • Stupid Evil: For an enclave of goblins disguised as humans, using the word "goblin" spelled backwards as the town name maybe wasn't the best choice to help disguise their dark secret.
  • Supernatural-Proof Father: Michael, to the point of accusing his daughter of being on drugs when she sees Grandpa Seth in the mirror.
  • Thematic Series: The Troll series is actually a series of unrelated movies that were never meant to be sequels. After the first film, this movie was made with the original, and more appropriate name, Goblins. It was given the name Troll 2 in hopes of making more money. As noted above, two different movies were released as Troll 3 (along with their original titles) and neither had anything to do with trolls or the first movie. The only themes here seems to be that they were originally unrelated movies and they're usually considered to be terrible.
  • There's No "B" in "Movie": The guys are all sitting around watching a movie about a crystal-stealing gorilla with rocket powers. Apparently, this is a real film.
  • This Was His True Form: Michael runs to get the fire extinguisher to put out Preacher Bells, and by the time he does, he's dead, leaving behind the hideous corpse of a goblin.
  • Time Stands Still: Grandpa Seth can freeze time.
  • To Serve Man: The goblins act nice to the Waits, but plan to turn them into green vegetable jelly and eat them.
  • Town with a Dark Secret: Nilbog.
  • Transflormation: Arnold becomes part-plant. He still maintains most of his human properties, even if his abilities as a human becomes limited, like bark growing over his mouth and his legs grown stuck into a plant pot, but he definitely still has enough human traits to be able to be aware of his surroundings, and once the bark covering his mouth is removed, speak. It's pretty hilarious to see him being pulled out from the house stiff as a stick by the pot.
  • Trouble Follows You Home: Joshua and his family have just escaped Nilbog and gotten safely back home. All seems fine until he realizes that the exchange family laced their food, and sees the goblins devouring what's left of his mother.
  • Veganopia: Subverted in that this probably the first ever depiction of an outright evil vegan society.
  • Weaksauce Weakness: Double-decker baloney sandwiches are not an impressive weakness for the Goblins to have.
  • Weirdness Censor: Everyone from out of town (except Joshua, and that's probably only because he was forewarned) seems to believe the patently bizarre mannerisms of the townsfolk is folksiness.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Brent and Drew both disappear abruptly from the film without explanation. It's implied that the goblins ate Drew, after he ate a sandwich from Sheriff Gene Freak (yes, that's his name), drank a bit of Nilbog milk ("High in vitamin content!") and then was presumably forcefed a milkshake made of Arnold. Brent was supposed to be transformed into popcorn, but it was so badly executed it just looked like he had some very weird sex and then goes to sleep.
  • What the Hell Is That Accent?: Creedence Leonore Gielgud. Apparently the Druids emigrated to Stonehenge from some vague location in Eastern Europe, by way of Scotireland.
  • You Can Leave Your Hat On: The very song is used in the infamous Corn Scene. Well, a lousy Casiotone version, but still.
  • You Keep Using That Word:
    • The goblins are called "vegetarians" rather than herbivores, suggesting that they do not eat meat by choice, though it's never clear. One goblin complains that food with blood on it will need to be soaked in vinegar overnight before its edible.
    • Apparently being losing your balls makes you a homosexual.
  • You Make Me Sic: Subverted.
    Seth: These evil creatures can transform themselves into flesh-and-blood people whenever and however they want.
    Joshua: You're making a mistake, Grandpa. You said they can. You should have said they could... or what kind of fairy tale is it?
    Seth: They can! They can! Goblins still exist! Your Grandpa Seth is telling you!
  • You Will Know What to Do: The double-decker baloney sandwich.

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Troll 2

Joshua has a revelation after seeing a sign displayed on a car mirror.

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