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TROLL HUNTER

Director: André Øvredal Year: 2010 Country: Norway Running time: 90 mins Censor Rating: M - violence, horror Genres & Subjects: Comedy, Road Movie, Science fiction Screenplay: André Øvredal Producers: John M. Jacobsen, Sveinung Golimo Photography: Hallvard Bræin Editor: Per Erik Eriksen Production designer: Martin Gant In Norwegian with English subtitles With: Otto Jespersen (Hans the troll hunter), Glenn Erland Tosterud (Thomas), Johanna Mørck (Johanna), Tomas Alf Larsen (Kalle), Urmila Berg-Domaas (Malica), Hans Morten Hansen (Finn), Robert Stoltenberg, Kurt Nærum Festivals: Sundance, San Francisco, Sydney 2011

Just when you thought it was safe to never watch another mockumentary, Troll Hunter waltzes into your life as one of the most hugely pleasurable creations this oft-maligned genre has birthed. It’s as if The Blair Witch Project was remade by highly accomplished filmmakers who show a flair for old-school special effects, a wicked sense of humour and a fondness for Maurice Sendak’s Where the Wild Things Are. Title cards explain that we are about to watch authenticated footage from three missing college kids who were making a documentary about illegal bear hunters. Their bumbling on-screen investigation recalls Scooby-Doo and the gang as they pester a mysterious hunter whose muddy 4x4 appears to have been mauled by some giant beast. Just when you think you have a handle on the proceedings the film becomes a laugh-out-loud thrill ride as the youngsters are taken on a journey into Norway’s hidden and dangerous crypto-zoological universe. — AT