In all honesty, the only reason I chose to watch Troll, released in 1986 is because I really want to watch Troll 2. A film that is often hailed as one of the worst films ever made and film that’s so bad it’s good. Garnering fame a cult classic, and while I know Troll 2 is an unrelated sequel. It’s a sequel all the same and if I wanna talk about it, I should know about the films that predate it within its own series. Hence, Troll. I wasn’t expecting much and Troll didn’t deliver that much, so I guess on that front Troll and I are even. But Troll did throw enough little surprises my way, that it remained interesting and maybe once even enthralling. Sadly those moments dissipated quickly after viewing, but I was still left with a sense that it was time, that may have not been well spent. It was in no way wasted.
Troll follows Harry Potter Jr (Noah Hathaway) and the rest of his family after they move into a new apartment in San Francisco. While unpacking with his father, Harry Sr (Michael Moriarty) and mother, Anne (Shelly Hack). Harry Jr.’s sister Wendy (Jenny Beck) wanders off and finds herself in the apartment complexes Laundry Room. While inside she is attacked by Torok (Voiced by Frank Welker/performed by Phil Fondacaro) a Wizard that has been cursed to be a Troll long ago. He possesses her form and takes her place, something that his family notices quickly due the change in behavior. But they choose to ignore blaming the personality shift on the stress of the move. Torok in Wendys form, starts moving from apartment to apartment attacking the residents, using his ring Torok transforms them into magical creatures based on their personalities. Frightened by sister Harry Jr. befriends Eunice St. Clair (played by both June Lockhart, along with her daughter Anne Lockhart). Eunice tells Harry she’s a witch, and used to be in love with Torok. But Torok waged a war on the humans, one that the magical creatures lost and she has stood guard waiting for Torok to make another move. She tells him that Torok is trying to transform the residents of the apartment building into magical creatures. This has also changed their apartments into magical worlds. Once everyone and their apartments are changed this new magical world of fairies will burst out into the human world. Eunice gives Harry a spear that she tells him he needs to stab into the heart of Toroks magical world, and that his sister is still alive…
When I think of B-Movies, it’s films like this that always come to mind. It has a quality that I can’t quantify that just makes it enjoyable. Troll is flawed, and those flaws do show. But while Troll doesn’t shine for long, it does shine. It helps when you have a very recognizable cast, Noah Hathaway was Atreyu in the Never-Ending Story, Phil Fondacaro delivers the best performance in the film and I always recognize from Willow, hell even Julia Louis-Dreyfus shows up as a neighbor.
I have to admit I liked that every time they showed the apartment exterior it was in such a way that it looked like it was under The Golden Gate Bridge. This was done on purpose because, duh Troll and I know that it’s super blatant. But I don’t care, something shouldn’t change. Vampires drink blood, Trolls live under bridges.
Final thoughts, in direct opposition to what Black Swan is to me. Troll is a film that in its parts is very lacking. But once you slap that bad boy together, it works just fine. Sure it’s no work of beauty that can be admired from different angles and repeatedly discussed after repeat viewings. Wait, no… to most people it’s not. To me it just may be. 6/10