Relationship between ‘Troll hunter’ and ‘Shrek’
There is a significant relationship in the ‘Shrek’ and ‘Troll hunter’. The two movies are different in their genre in that while one (Troll Hunter) is a mock documentary the other (Shriek) is an animation but both produce a mixture of fright and amusement in their viewers. They depict creatures that are born out of mere imagination and creativity of the people behind them yet they are created in a manner that looks real. Both the principal characters presented in the two movies are non-existent in real life. The films portray some of the beliefs people have held for centuries without any clues of their reality, or whether they are mere fantasies. However, the manner of their presentation makes them to be believable in the minds of their audiences conveying both mischiefs as in the ‘Shriek’ and policy controls in the ‘Troll Hunter’. It is amazing how Hans understands the physiology of the trolls and his desire to have the information out regardless of the efforts of the government to keep their existence as a secret. The analysis of the mythology of the trolls remains to the imagination of viewers, torn between reality and imaginations regarding the existence of shrieks and trolls. Although the 2 films have a relationship in the use of the scary nature of the creatures in them, Shrek is an animation movie while Troll hunter is mock documentary, they both have characters longing for companionships, while Troll Hunter shows distrust in governments
Summaries of the Troll Hunter and the Shriek
‘Shrek’ is about an animation created out of man’s imagination. The movie ‘Shrek’ talks about the life of one grouchy, terrifying, and cynical green ogre. At one point during the movie, a man sent to kill Shrek argues, “Yeah, it’ll grind your bones for its bread”. This was in reference to Shrek. The terrifying creature that is the Shrek has always enjoyed a carefree and peaceful life living in his swamp. However, this life is disturbed after the exiling of fairytale characters who move into his swamp by order of another out of the ordinary character, Lord Farquaad, a fairy-hating, obsessive, and evil king. Shrek decides to pursue the king in order that the fairytale characters go back to where they came from, and to do this, he goes to Lord Farquaad with Donkey.
Shriek is never interested in the company of others because of the fact that he feels that the world is always against him because of his physical features. This makes him to prefer to remain alone without the interference of anyone. This can be seen after his winning the duel match for winning the heart of Fiona as she screams, “You—you’re a – – an ogre”, after witnessing Shrek’s face. She had all the while after the castle incident thought that her rescuer was a normal creature. This leads Shriek to his confirmatory reply in loath of the world, “Look, I’m not the one with the problem, okay? It’s the world that seems to have a problem with me. People take one look at me and go. ‘Aah! Help! Run! A big, stupid, ugly ogre!’ he is a creature in need of love, but no one is ever available to offer him affection because of his scariness.
‘Troll hunter’ on the other hand, is a mock documentary that taking its inspiration from Norwegian folklore. The mockumentary, ‘Troll hunter’, a mock documentary as it is not actually a documentary that it suggests, talks about the travails of a group of university college students led by Thomas and a group member Johanna, and their cameraman Kalle. These students set out with the aim of making a documentary about a suspected bear poacher, Hans. Initially, they thought that Hans a mere bear hunter, the students soon find out otherwise information about him. The government agency under which Hans works is keen on maintaining a containment area for the trolls. However, that is not always possible as the trolls break lose occasionally and it remains upon Hans to deal with them. Hunters think that he is just a bear hunter and the government wants people to believe in that. Even after killing a troll and people question the tracks, the government maintains that the tracks are not fake and that they are bear tracks.
Hans soon faces the devastation of living a lie; this after the death of Thomas and the mysterious disappearance of the students’ land rover. He soon realizes that he needs to get his story out there for people to know the reality of the existence of the trolls. They next day, they track the trolls and get to discover mysterious technologies used in hunting the trolls. After several interviews, Hans reveals that his work is to keep trolls a top secret and to kill any that comes near populated areas. “A giant, 200 feet tall, has chased the Dovre trolls down here. We don’t want Jotnars running around”. However, he notices a new trend in thehabits of the Trolls. He realizes that the trolls have been acting weird as they have begun leaving their territories unusually, and from the blood sample that Hans gathers, he realizes that rabies is the cause of this unusual behavior exhibited by the trolls (Netflix.com).
The horrors of the trolls
The two movies have instances of horror in them with the characterization of the Shriek and the trolls made to be scary and against the ordinaries of human expectations. They contain characters and depict qualities that are quite out of the normal, or paranormal for that matter. However, the origin of the troll makes it sound much more of a reality than the Shrek, which was the idea of an animation movie. A troll is unheard of in the normal world setting. Trolls are supernatural beings contained in the Norse mythology or the folklore in Scandinavian countries. In Old Norse sources, trolls lived in isolated places particularly in rocks, mountains, caves, or sometimes lived in small family units. The scariness of the trolls is not felt in the film other than through the hunting Hans and the students. Much of the characterization in the film falls on Hans in a manner that creates amusement, fright, amazement and concern regarding the reality behind the trolls.
The fear for the trolls comes from their hatred of the smell of humans and Christians. Hans is secretive and protective of his duty despite knowing the danger he is in for hunting trolls. However, he cannot afford a situation that can lead to a compromise for fear of creating even more danger in his job. After consenting to allowing the students to accompany him on his hunts, he has to be sure that they are not Christians because trolls can smell Christian blood. They were dangerous to the Christian society displaying a habit of snatching vast tracts of farm or land estate for their own benefit.
Environmental concern of the trolls hunting
Throughout the film, the contentious issue that comes out is the existence of the likes of Hans. These are government-sanctioned hunters employed not only to hunt trolls but any other animal who strays beyond the set perimeters of their territory. This makes Hans to hate his job, though he knows that it is required of him to protect the secret at all cost. However, it is through the boredom, fear and despair that Hans finally decides to make the story behind the trolls known. He complains about the government policies governing his department as he figures out that it is necessary for the truth to be told. He is tired of the issues he has been hiding in his job of hunting down the trolls and that leaves him to tell the tale about them to the students who would eventually relay it to the world through their documentary. Finally, the conspiracy is out and the acts of the government for keeping animals such as the troll contained gets to the open.
Characterization of Shriek and Hans
The characterization of shriek and Hans depicts the things people say they need and those things they actually need. It also looks at opening up to the outside world instead of remaining locked up and always trying to lockout the world. Actually, that is the life of Shriek who is in dire need of love and affection but keeps pushing others away from his presence claiming that he needs to be left alone. In actual sense, he needs friends, and companionship amidst longing to belong to a community. This is evident through his reception of the attacking villagers and the relationship he has with Fiona and the donkey. He hates the loud nature of the donkey but only takes it out on him when he is annoyed. Otherwise, on other occasions, Shriek is warm and accommodating and on realizing that he really does not have to be alone accepts the love of Fiona. He forgoes his sullen persona and the fear of being hurt but that only lasts to the point when Fiona realizes his identity. It is the same thing with Hans in his refusal to let the students know about what he hunts, while in real sense he is tired of the job and wishes that the conspiracy ended and the truth gets to the society. Through the narration of Hans, the Trolls found in the Scandinavian folklore, existed for centuries. This means that trolls are significant in the culture of the Scandinavian peoples while shriek is mere entertainment.
The Troll Hunter and the Blair Witch Project
A similar movie to the ‘Troll hunter’ is the ‘Blair Witch Project’ produced in 1999. This movie is a documentary just like the ‘Troll Hunter’. However, it entails college students whose film is shot a year after their disappearance following the discovery of the equipment that they used in doing the Blair Witch project. These kids just as the ones in ‘Troll hunter’ were never seen again. The film is adapted from an old legend about a group of witches who tortured before murdering children many years ago before the action of the film (rottentomatoes.com). This movie falls under the genre of psychological horror film. The film has its basis on a legend just the same way the ‘Troll Hunter’ bases its tale on the mythologies of the Norwegian community. In the introduction bit of the movie, the viewers are told that the three students were neither seen nor heard from again, though their video and sound equipment together with a majority of footage they shot was discovered a year after their disappearance by the police. The ‘recovered footage’ forms the basis of the film that the viewer is watching. The witch story forms the basis of this movie in a supernatural occurrence. Witches are powerful, immortal magic beings who practice witchcraft. Witches follow Wicca, a renowned religion worldwide. They make up potions known to be evil and destructive to humans. This idea of supernatural, beyond the ordinary beings is what makes this movie similar to the ‘Troll hunter’.
Theodore kittelsen, and how his paintings relate to the “troll hunter” film?
Theodor Kittelsen’s work has been used in creating the trolls. There is a similarity in the trolls seen in the movie and those in Theodor Kittelsen’s work. The producers of Troll hunter chose to go with Theodor Kittelsen’s work in creating the movie rather than opt for the usual monster designs. Theodor Kittelsen is best known for his nature paintings as well as for his various illustrations depicting fairy tales and legends such as trolls. In creating troll figure used in the movie, the inspiration came from the work of Theodor Kittelsen. The folktales and legends of trolls date back to centuries before Theodor’s birth. However, some like the ‘Norwegian Folktales’ comes from the artist Theodor Kittelsen. Exact stories from the folktales and troll designs are from the early illustrations by this artist. For example, the part in the movie where the troll hunter uses goats placed on the bridge as baits comes from the folktale called, “Three Billy Goats Gruff” (De tre bukkene Bruse). Another example is where in the early parts of the film, one of the students poses by the side of the road while looking across the valley, a stick in his hand. This is a clear representation of Theodor Kittelsen’s illustration of the fairy tale “Soria Moria Castle”.
Trolls appear in tales collected all over Norway in the 1800’s as villains or the main obstacle that a hero must defeat. In the present situation, trolls can be found mostly in souvenir shops and in illustrations (Wright). Very few Norwegian illustrators or painters have achieved to capture these peculiar creatures and the charmed atmosphere of the Norwegian nature on either paper or canvas as successfully as Theodor does. Kittelsen’s characteristic art and artistic use of the channel of drawing, containing black and white boundaries and scales of gray between are particular to Theodor. Theodor found special interest by this shadowy world contained by the supernatural beings or spirits. He could seem them everywhere while walking in the forests and the fields. The passages from fairytales contained in his book, ‘Troll’ are especially known as magical or fantastic tales, a most common form of Norwegian folktale. The stories usually contain trolls, people with supernatural powers, and witches.
‘Shrek’ and ‘Troll hunter’ share a common characteristic in their depiction of scary characters. This shows through the paranormal creatures that are the main characters in both movies. While ‘Shrek’ bases on an animated book created because of an author’s imagination, thus making it obviously fictional, Trolls derive from folklores contained in the Scandinavian tradition, thus might be true in some proportions. One does not expect to stumble upon such characters as depicted in both movies. Though Trolls are built on such vast evidence recorded in the Scandinavian culture, they are non-existent and it is a mockery documenting their hunting. They can be said to be a belief that has been recognized or revered for centuries such that the people believe it to be true. ‘Shrek’, on the other hand, was created from imagination and the characters depicted in it are not real life beings. However, in both stories, there the characters have distrust in people though inwardly they long to have people who can understand and share their stories.
Netflix.com. Troll Hunter http://movies.netflix.com/WiPlayer?movieid=70170065&trkid=1464504&locale=en-US
The Rotten Tomatoes. The Blair Witch project (1999). Retrieved from http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/blair_witch_project/
Wright, A. The Bay Citizen. A Norwegian Viewers’ Guide to ‘Troll Hunter’. 2011. Retrieved from http://www.baycitizen.org/blogs/culturefeed/norwegian-viewers-guide-troll-hunter/ IMDb. Shrek (2001). Retrieved from http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0126029/