I will never forget the first time I saw one of the finest pieces of cinema to ever grace the silver screen. It was a week before I left home for college for the very first time, on a rickety projector screen in the basement of my local public library. That night, my life was changed forever.
Troll 2, folks. The movie was Troll 2.
Here, I’ll give you some context: this glorious mess of a film has gained a cult following due to its unofficial status as the “best worst movie of all time.”
Now I must warn you: this review will contain spoilers. Even if you haven’t seen this cinematic masterpiece yet, though, I encourage you to read on. Believe me when I say that knowing what you’re in for will in no way detriment your viewing experience.
Let’s take it from the top. First of all, despite what its title may suggest, Troll 2 is not in fact a sequel to…anything. It is a standalone film. Nor do any trolls appear in the movie. See, its genius is already demonstrated in the title alone.
I really wish I could outline the plot of this movie for you all. I really wish I could do that, but you see, that would require the film to have one. A sensible plotline, that is.
We have our typical horror movie trope of a family in the process of moving to a new home. (Yes, Troll 2 is billed as a horror film.) Except they’re…not actually moving? They’re taking part in an exchange program of sorts? As in, they switch homes with another family for a short period of time? I’m using question marks because I’m not actually sure how the semantics of this would work?
Anyway, our hero comes in the form of a young lad named Joshua, who quickly notices that his family’s new hometown is, ah, strange. It’s called Nilbog, for starters. And all the food there is covered in some kind of green slimy substance. Which seems to disturb no one but Joshua, because logic.
Oh yeah, and Josh is guided throughout the events of the movie by his imaginary (?) grandpa, who warns our young protagonist about the goblins that supposedly inhabit his family’s new stomping grounds. And guess what? Gramps is right! Joshua and his family are in for a treat, because the townspeople of good old Nilbog are in fact goblins in disguise. And for that, I tip my hat to the screenwriters.
I’ll level with you, I have no idea how to describe this movie beyond what I’ve outlined already. The goblins turn their human prey into plants (I think) by feeding them some kind of green goop (I think) and then eat them (I think).
There is a subplot involving teenage boys and a seductress with popcorn, and I believe there is also a conflict-resolving sandwich in there somewhere, but I don’t remember the details. I mean, do I need to? Those components tell a story all on their own.
If you read this entire review and think to yourself, ‘Well, that didn’t make any sense, Taryn,’ then congratulations! I thought the SAME thing! I really thought I could condense this stellar screenplay into a 500 word commentary piece for my school newspaper, but it turns out Troll 2 cannot be acutely summarized. There is simply too much. So please, watch it for yourself. I’ve done all I can here. Go forth.