28 October 2010

Week of Horror 2010: Day 04

The Ramblings of a Minnesota Geek's Week of Horror is celebrating its fourth day, and to truly make it a momentous day, the movie selected is most definitely considered one of the worst films ever and thus a tad more special than the others. In review, the Week of Horror has consisted of Monster Island, Killer Condom, and Paranormal Activity 2.

Troll 2

Starring Michael Stephenson, Connie McFarland, Jason Wright, George Hardy, Margo Prey, Robert Ormsby. Written by Claudio Fragasso (aka 'Drake Floyd') & Rossella Drudi, Directed by Claudio Fragasso. Release: 12 October 1990. Epic Pictures, PG-13

TROLL 2, universally regarded as the "best worst movie" ever made - seriously, there's even a documentary by that title that came out last year glorifying the flicks awfulness. I know, I know, you’re probably wondering, ‘but isn’t PLAN 9 FROM OUTER SPACE widely considered the worst movie ever made?’ Yes, it is. There are also documentaries about that film, too, and the life and hard times of its director, Ed Wood, Jr. But PLAN 9 and TROLL 2 are entirely separate type of bad movies. With TROLL 2, there’s an infectious fun about the whole shabang, where every absurdity heightens the enjoyment of the movie, and there’s a possible inkling that everyone involved in the production sorta knew what they were doing when they were making it. PLAN 9, well, to be frank, and this might piss off many a reader, is a very long, fairly boring film that fails to ignite any interest without a MST3K commentary track. Sorry, PLAN 9 lovers.

Anyway, how does one review a movie so universally known and loved? Ahem, loved in the being mocked sense. Here’s my short answer: don’t review it. Because, and I mean this in the best possible way, TROLL 2 isn’t a movie that should be spoken about, it’s the type of movie that needs to be seen, and then that viewer passing on their remarks to their friends, and their friends do that to their friends, and so on and so forth. TROLL 2 should become an annual Halloween even, or hell, just an annual event all in itself. Seriously, pick up a copy of the movie, DVD or Blu-Ray, your choice, grab your friends, make some popcorn, comfortably sit back, and enjoy the show.

TROLL 2 is a fun bad movie. In fact, if it wasn’t for the stinking feeling that the filmmakers made the flick deliberately bad, it could have been a rather decent production. A family lured to Nilbog only to be the desert for a bunch of goblins! I mean, c’mon, how astronomically wickedly cool is that? The answer is ‘very’, ladies and gentlemen. There’s two specific sequences that probably elicited the ‘worst movie’ title: the first was a super strange ‘love’ scene that involves corn, and lots and lots of popcorn. The other is a scene involving a scary woman decked in full Helena Bonham Carter make-up (think SWEENEY TODD) as she turns a young hormonal boy into food for her precious goblins. Two giganto WTF? moments that no doubt contributed greatly to the films, um, success.

Ha, I said I wasn’t going to review the movie, and here I am. Alrighty, here’s the skinny: TROLL 2’s badness comes from the dialogue and the people delivering the dialogue. Everything is said with such, er, gusto, like a really bad American Idol contestant trying their hand with acting and just landed their first gig exactly because of how bad they are. No matter ones dislike for the crop of direct-to-DVD releases these last few years, the actors in those productions are far and beyond superior to what is on display here. But paradoxically, and I can’t believe I’m gonna say this, but I’d rather re-experience these folks over and over again. Guess I’m just a sucker for bad acting, on occasion.

Oh! Last but not least, the actual design of the goblins. In a word, marvelous! Possibly the best evidence for the deliberate badness of the production, these goblins look like the by-product of a going-out-of-business Good Will store. Hire some short people, use whatever outfits, paper, and markers that were around, and voilia! A goblin was born. And before I forget – let’s take a second to talk about the title. If or when you roam around your local video store and decide to buy the movie, you may notice it double featured with a flick called TROLL, and the customer assumption is that TROLL 2 is, in fact, a sequel to TROLL. Not so the case here. TROLL 2 was originally called GOBLINS, all throughout its production, but the company, for some strange reason, decided to rename it TROLL 2 to capitalize on the, uh…successful (?) market name. So, this movie is by no means whatsoever connected to any movies before it. This is an entirely new creature of awesomeness. Got that? Coolio.

TROLL 2 is a bad movie, but it is 100% second-by-second fun. I highly, highly recommend any and all to experience it. On Demand? Watch it now! Got Netflix? Stream this second.

Final note: anyone surprised there’s not a TROLL 2 AND PHILOSOPHY book out there? Think about the chapters: ‘The Homoerotic Subtext of the Boyfriend and his friends’, ‘Religious Symbolism in Green’, ‘History Repeats Itself: Ritual Sacrifices, Adopted by Goblins’, ‘The Power of Innocence: The Young See What Adults Cannot’, and so forth. I think it’d be brilliant. And, a final, final note: the above screencap came from the recently released Blu-Ray, as taken by the brilliant review Adam at DVDTalk.com. The review can be read here.

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