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Film / Troll (2022)

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Troll is a Norwegian Kaiju movie produced by Netflix, directed by Roar Uthaug, and starring Ine Marie Wilmann. When an explosion in the Norwegian mountains awakens an ancient troll, officials appoint a fearless palaeontologist to stop it from wreaking deadly havoc.

The movie was released on December 1, 2022. The cinematic trailer can be see here.

Not to be confused with Troll (1986), or for that matter Troll 2.


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This work contains examples of:

  • Actually Pretty Funny: When Andreas correctly identifies Captain Holm's night-vision goggles, he adds that he has some military experience... from Call of Duty. Holm actually smirks at this.
  • Agent Scully: Even though it's obvious what the troll is, and equally obvious conventional methods aren't effective, anyone who suggests calling it a troll and using folklore as a reference for dealing with it are treated as crazy for even suggesting it by those in authority. They resolve to continue using More Dakka to take it out before they make any headway following fairy tales.
  • Alas, Poor Villain: When the troll succumbs to the sunrise in the end, it's treated somberly, because although it was a destructive man-eating beast, it was an ultimately intelligent, normally peaceful being whose kind were unfairly genocided by humans and that simply wanted to be reunited with its family.
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  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: The troll is so massive he goes through a Godzilla-style rampage that wrecks half of (and towers way over) Oslo at the climax and in one scene the protagonists confuse the resting troll for a cliff until it wakes up.
  • Arbitrary Skepticism: The longer the troll is out and about, the more and more other characters fall into this as they refuse to believe that fairytales are actually real, such as Captain Kris. By the end though, everyone seems to have accepted the facts.
  • Arkham's Razor: Nora is the only one to make the obvious observation that the sequence of depressions look like tracks and a witness' video shows something massive and humanoid. The other scientific experts in the government council meeting condescendingly scoff at the notion, coming up with convoluted theories, because something that big and bipedal sounds impossible. Of course, she's right or we wouldn't have a movie.
  • Bad Vibrations: At an elderly couple's rural home, the first sign of the approaching troll is when everything starts shaking from the vibrations of its footsteps.
  • Berserk Button: Just like in the fairytales, Christians really piss the troll off. It's immediate instinct upon discovering a Christian soldier is to scoop him up and devour him. The remains of its kin being manhandled by humans also angers it, as when it sees the skull of its offspring on the back of a truck, it becomes positively enraged. The hatred of Christians gets eventual justification that 1) hatred of churches is not because of being Christian per se but because it reacts violently to anything that makes too much noise and church bells do that and 2) Christian humans killed all of its kin in bog-standard Evil Colonialist fashion and thus it's payback.
  • Conveniently-Empty Building: A rare justification. The Prime Minister orders the complete evacuation of Oslo in the final act when it's determined the troll is advancing towards the city, and the civilians promptly obey the order. Good thing, because the chaos of the climax leaves at least half the city torn apart.
  • The Cuckoolander Was Right: Tobias is absolutely obsessed with trolls and is determined to prove they exist. Naturally, due to his loopiness, everyone writes him off as crazy, or at the very least eccentric. He ends up being proven absolutely right when it turns out that trolls really do exist.
  • Do-Anything Soldier: Though specifically part of the Norwegian Army’s Special Operations Command, Captain Kris is assigned to a wide variety of tasks by his superiors, such piloting a helicopter, leading a mechanized assault, or directing traffic.
  • Dug Too Deep: Or more like "Dynamited Too Much". The events of the film happen because a tunnel construction project blows a hole in the cave where it was hibernating and wakes it up with the noise.
  • Eaten Alive: The troll devours a hapless Christian soldier alive.
  • Elephant Graveyard: There's a bonebed of troll skeletons beneath the royal palace in Oslo from when the Christians exterminated the trolls. Several of the skeletons are those of baby trolls.
  • The End... Or Is It?: After the troll is destroyed, the film ends with the reveal that there is another troll in the same cave the first one was hibernating in, which wakes up equally ticked off just as the film cuts to credits.
  • Eye Awaken: One shot in the trailer has the characters standing in front of a cliffside... until the cliff opens its eyes, revealing it to be the troll's recumbent form.
  • Failed Attempt at Drama: Tired of the Prime Minister's attitude, Andreas attempts to resign in a dramatic fashion, leaving his access card on the table, when he tries to leave, he remembers that he needs his access card to open the door, so he has to go back and pick up the card.
  • Gentle Giant: The troll, normally. It only causes some destruction at first simply because it's so big, only attacks when shot at first, and its ultimate goal is just to be reunited with its family. At one point, it even saves a father and his son from a falling helicopter.
  • Giant Footprint Reveal: In the trailer, one overhead shot shows the characters standing inside the huge footprint of the troll, which dwarfs the human figures walking around in it.
  • Healing Factor: None of the military's weapons have any use against the troll, partly because it's made of stone and partly because it's able to immediately regenerate from any injury. Only direct sunlight (or UV radiation) is able to actually injure it.
  • Hope Spot: Nora decides that killing the troll is wrong, turns off all the UV lights, and tries to tell it to flee to the mountains where it won't be bothered by humans ever again. Unfortunately, at that moment, the sun rises and kills the troll anyway.
  • I Did What I Had to Do: Rikard Sinding, an elderly palace official who knew of the Trolls before the troll woke up, had a great deal of respect for the main heroine's father, who researched trolls for years, but before he could publish his findings, Sinding censored him and shut down his research. He regrets it, but he did it to prevent hysteria and ridicule for her father. She was less than happy about it, since it ruined her father's life and her relationship with him.
  • Kaiju: The troll, a towering figure larger than buildings, spends most of the film trampling its way through the countryside and a city, leaving crater-like footprints in the landscape and casually knocking buildings into rubble with swings of its arms.
  • Last of His Kind: The troll is speculated by Nora to be the very last of its kind, as the rest were exterminated by Christians centuries ago. However, Andrea raises the possibility of other trolls dormant in other glacier caves at the end, and another troll is shown waking up in The Stinger.
  • A Mythology Is True: All the fairytales of trolls turn out to be true, but have been twisted by various authors to paint trolls as just that, make-believe creatures.
  • Never Hurt an Innocent: Oddly enough, the troll only hurt those who attacked it intentionally, and in an instant, where a child was in danger of being crushed by a crashing helicopter, the troll grabbed the helicopter, saving the child and the parent, and then left as peacefully as it could.
  • Non-Malicious Monster: The troll isn't hostile to anything that doesn't attack or provoke it first, and actually appears docile around humans who show it kindness and respect. It's later revealed the troll bears no true ill-will toward humanity (Christians notwithstanding) and is merely trying to reach the rest of its kind in Oslo. Unfortunately, all the other trolls are long dead.
  • Oh, Crap!: While the group are hiding right next to the troll's feet, the religious soldier hiding with them suddenly begins praying to God. As the troll can smell the blood of a Christian, Nora and her father share a look of silent horror and quickly decide to get the hell out of there. Sure enough, the troll finds the soldier and devours him.
  • Our Trolls Are Different: For the most part, the troll obliges by traditional Norwegian folk-belief, being a giant, stout, shaggy humanoid with rocky skin, a bulbous nose, a clubbed tail, and tall enough to tower over most buildings. It's also able to distinguish the blood of Christians, and responds accordingly. It also is able to walk around in sunlight or at least on very cloudy days. Once Nora figures this out, she makes a plan to unleash UV floodlights on it that do more damage than literal billions of dollars' worth of military hardware could achieve.
  • Papa Wolf: Nora is able to get the troll to follow her and Andreas in the climax by mounting the skull of one of his children on the back of a truck. As she expected, it loses interest in reaching the royal palace and immediately starts chasing the truck in a furious rage.
  • Really 700 Years Old: The troll dates back to the Christianization of Norway a thousand years ago, and was probably pretty old even then.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Many to Norwegian folklore, understandably.
      • The song "In The Hall of the Mountain King" of "Peer Gynt" appears repeatedly through the soundtrack.
      • In one part of the climax the protagonists are in a situation similar to the "3 Billy Goats Bluff" legend (although they snark that it's not knowledge that will help them).
    • A skeptical government agent mockingly suggests that King Kong could be responsible for the giant footprints.
    • A Japanese news broadcaster dubs the troll the "Norwegian Godzilla" while reporting on its swath of destruction.
    • One protagonist, the put-upon government agent, has some knowledge of military weapons and procedures… from playing "Call of Duty".
    • When the heroes try to recall the old stories about trolls from their childhoods, one says you're not supposed to feed them after midnight.
  • Stock Scream: The Wilhelm Scream is heard on two different sequences of the troll curbstomping the Norwegian army.
  • Surrounded by Idiots: Nora initially feels this way when she's called into a meeting of the top scientific minds in Norway. She can't seem to believe why everyone is debating when it can clearly be seen that the craters are giant footprints.
  • Sympathy for the Devil: The main heroine feels sorry for the troll, since it is not only the Last of Its Kind, it is also an Antagonist in Mourning, having learned of the mass genocide of its species by man, and so she tries to set it loose so it can leave in peace.
  • Taken for Granite: The ultimate fate of the troll when caught in the rays of the rising sun.
  • Town with a Dark Secret: The film presents the intriguing concept that the Royal Palace in Oslo was built on top of a far older palace inhabited by the titular troll and his family, who were killed following the Christianisation of Norway — and said troll is bloody furious about it, rampaging towards Oslo to reclaim his home.
  • Weakened by the Light: The troll in this film is vulnerable to sunlight, or rather, direct sunlight, and UV spotlights work as a good substitute. The troll succumbs to the sunrise at the end and is turned to stone. Interestingly, even the centuries old troll skeletons under the Royal Palace still turn to stone when exposed to UV light.
  • The Worm Guy: Tobias Tidemann, has spent his whole life researching Troll folkore and investigating if trolls actually existed, things that made him a laughingstock in academia and eventually labeled as a madman. Worse yet, when an actual troll appears, he is still considered insane by the government and kicked out from a government gathering and one of his old friends reveals to Nora the Troll graveyard beneath Oslo and insists that he did what he had to do to keep Tobias from causing a ruckus that would probably have him silenced by the government, a thing that Nora is more than a little angry to call him out on. Nora, as a more reknowned anthropologist, is also put in this role when she has to tell the rest of the people arguing about what made a mountain explode and kill a lot of people to get their heads out of their rear ends and acknowledge the Apocalyptic Log of one of the victims that shows, on HD video, something humanoid and massive as the cause.
  • Written by the Winners: According to Tobias, the brutish qualities associated with trolls are because the Christian establishment slandered them after wiping them out. The reveal of the troll graveyard underneath the Royal Palace indicates that this is true.

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