First, Torok the troll takes over an apartment building and turns it into a mythical forest, one apartment at a time – transforming the occupants into vicious little trolls as well. In the completely unrelated follow-up, young Joshua must save his family from being turned into plants and eaten by goblins.
These two films – related by title only – are packaged together into three hours of bad movie watching. “Troll” is obviously the superior film and features an all-star cast including Michael Moriarty, Shelley Hack, Sonny Bono, Julia Louis-Dreyfus and June Lockhart…all of whom would probably prefer that you hadn’t just read that they were in this film. Young Wendy is possessed by a troll who happened to be living in the laundry room and through her he transforms each apartment into the forest where he lived so long ago and the people who live in the apartments into his minions. Only June Lockhart, in fact his ancient sorceress lover, knows the secret to stopping him. The plot is silly and the special effects are dated, but it plays as standard 80s fluff, along the lines of “Critters”.
“Troll 2” is widely regarded as one of the worst films ever made – and for good reason. The cast are a lot of first (or only) timers, directed by a delusional Italian film maker who could hardly speak English, and written by another Italian who also didn’t have a grasp of the language, leading to some of the most awkward dialog ever filmed. The plot involves a town of goblins (yes, goblins, not trolls – despite the title) who eat people. In an added twist, though, the goblins are vegetarians so they have to turn the people into plants first by getting them to eat green food and drink lumpy milk. They’re led by a crazy druid who is noteworthy for turning in one of the most bizarre acting performances ever. The final resolution is so bizarre that it alone almost makes the film worth watching.
“Troll” is a forgettable throwaway film, but “Troll 2” is one of those movies you have to see to believe. At times, you’ll be convinced it’s a spoof, but it’s better than that because it was being done seriously and just happened to turn into a spoof of itself through its own incompetence. These films may technically be “horror” but they work far better as comedy.