Troll 2, 1990.
Directed by Claudio Fragasso (credited as Drake Floyd)
Starring Michael Stephenson, George Hardy, Margo Prey and Connie McFarland
Young Joshua is mourning the loss of his grandpa Seth, whose spirit visits him regularly to warn him about the dangers of goblins. Joshua’s family refuses to believe that the deceased old man has truly been re-appearing, chalking it up to the boy’s refusal to accept his grandfathers’ passing. Meanwhile, the family is taking part in a home exchange vacation with a family from the quiet mountain town of Nilbog. However, upon arrival Joshua finds himself visited by his grandfather once again, warning of the dangerous goblins and their intentions to eat the visiting family.
One of the most notoriously bad films of all time and a cult hit to boot, I am course talking about the iconic masterpiece of bad cinema that is Troll 2.
First off let’s talk about the performances from what can we politely call “the cast”.
We have incredibly awkward and sometimes stilted delivery from some and we have performances so wonderfully over the top you can almost smell the ham through the screen. And in one instance, we have a genuine mental patient who resembles a cheap Brad Dourif clone, who had allegedly smoked a whole lot of weed before filming his part – so much weed it seems that he accidentally gives the best performance in the film.
If this were a good film or at least a competently made film, the bad acting would make it a laughing stock. Well, even more of a laughing stock than it already is.
But instead, the hilariously bad performances are part of the film’s charm and it only adds to the overall fun of watching it. We can’t help but laugh at the strange delivery, and to be fair to the actors, it’s not their fault entirely given that they had to work with an Italian director who spoke little English, directing from a script that was just barely readable when translated.
So that’s why we have many wonderfully clunky and weird lines, such as “We’re going to Nilbog, a wonderful half empty town”, or my personal favourite; “You can’t piss on hospitality. I won’t allow it!”
But of course, no one cares about those lines, not when you’re watching a film with what is undoubtedly the most iconic line in all of cinematic history. Frankly Clark Gable I don’t give a damn about your iconic line, sorry Humphrey Bogart we won’t always have Paris and you can stick your beautiful friendship somewhere else.
In fact, screw all previous iconic cinematic dialogue, because Troll 2 has the mother of them all. Say it with me now, seriously say it with me as you read my words. Go on say it aloud, even if you’re reading this while on the bus, I dare you.
“They’re eating her and then they’re going to eat me. OH MY GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOD!”
Of course, if you watch the film, or read my plot description of it at least, you’ll notice there seems to be a noticeable absence of trolls in Troll 2, and there’s a reason for that. The film was merely titled the way it was as an attempt to cash in on a mildly successful, and rubbish, 1986 film titled Troll, or as it should probably be called Harry Potter and the Trolls. Seriously the hero of the original Troll film is named Harry Potter, Harry Potter Jr in fact, just to add to the weirdness.
Back in Troll 2 however, we have a town of man-eating goblins to contend with instead. Albeit vegetarian man-eating goblins, as if the title wasn’t confusing enough. These goblins view meat, and those who eat it, with utter contempt and disgust; turning them into strange gooey green pod vegetable things by way of food poisoning, so as to eat them. Sounds like the kind of punishment that would be inflicted on meat eaters in a dictatorship run by Morrissey.
In short, Troll 2 is an awful film, but it’s just too silly and stupid not to love.
Filled with hilariously bad performances, laughable make-up effects for the goblins (merely consisting burlap sacks and cheap masks, some of which oddly reminded me of Edwina Currie) plus the most iconic line in film history, it truly is a perfect storm of awfulness.
Although do yourselves a favour should you want to watch it, don’t do what I did and watch it alone like some sort of loser, get your friends around for a night, pop on Troll 2 and have yourself a merry old time.
Check it out to witness one of the greatest pieces of bad cinema ever made.
Flickering Myth Rating – Film: ★ / Movie: ★ ★ ★ ★