Three Norwegian college students made this documentary as a film studies project. We know them only by their first names, Kalle, Johanna and Thomas. Although this film was given the unfortunate name, Troll Hunter, it is primarily a disturbing educational experience. Some of what a viewer sees might seem unnecessarily bloody and frightening, but this is what these students found after they attached themselves to a reclusive, surly bear hunter. I will only say that this man, Hans, and his superior, Mr. Finn Haugen, worked for the Norwegian Wildlife Board. As we and the students later learn the men actually were employees of the secret government agency, the Norwegian Troll Security Service (TSS). This agency, it turned out, was created to kill trolls and hide their existence. Outlandish? You must watch this documentary film. This film was released only after the students disappeared and their work was discovered by the side of a road.
The film is presented as it was discovered, from snips and pieces made by the students. Kalle was the cameraman, Johanna was responsible for the audio, Thomas was the on-camera commentator. We do not know their last names, only that they were students from Dottmar College. They were three young people dedicated to their project, sometimes frightened but with a deep desire to learn and to record the truth. They have never been seen again, and we do not know their fate. Many suspect the TSS might be involved since it since has been learned that the TSS has been attempting to cover-up the existence of trolls for many years. This was discovered only inadvertently when the Norwegian prime minister, Mr. Jens Stoltenberg, inadvertently confirmed the existence of trolls during a press conference.
In the course of these students’ film we encounter the Tosserlad, the Jotnar and a group of young Ringlefinches, all huge beasts with gigantic noses, long arms and covered with filthy hair. We see how gigantic are these beasts, towering over forests and wreaking destruction as they move. We learn that their inability to convert vitamin D into calcium makes them vulnerable to turning into stone in sunlight as their bodies over-react to UV rays. Unfortunately, (because of the likelihood of sensationalism), the students also record terrifying chases through dense dark woods, bloody encounters and frightening suspense. There is the sacrifice of a goat to snare, I believe, a ringlefinch. The young goat bleats its fear.
Some of what the students filmed simply is not appropriate for children. Indeed, even the preparations for approaching these creatures might seem too disgusting for family viewing. The application of trollstench, particularly to the armpits and groins, is vulgar. This substance is so foul to the nostrils that gagging usually is induced. Trollstench is prepared by cooking down the difficult-to-collect bodily wastes of trolls. This, however, is essential if one is to disguise one’s own scent, particularly if one is a Christian. Trolls are enraged by Christians. Yet as fearsome as these huge beasts are, they are susceptible to disease. This might be, the students learn, the cause of troll rage.
Kalle, Johanna and Thomas framed their story around Hans, the trolljegeren (or troll hunter). Hans might not be as reliable as the students think. Yet Hans undoubtedly knows his trolls
Call Troll Hunter what you will – a documentary, cinema verite, or simply a student college film project. It remains a remarkable record. Any who have managed to watch that other classic documentary, Forgotten Silver, will not regret watching this.
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