Animated comedy featuring the voice talents of Justin Timberlake, Anna Kendrick, Gwen Stefani and James Corden. Branch (Timberlake) is a grumpy, paranoid loner who is quite content living on his own, away from the ridiculously happy population of Troll Village. When the village is invaded by troll-eating Bergens, the overly optimistic and annoyingly chirpy troll leader Poppy (Kendrick) comes to Branch for help. As the unlikely pair go on a journey to rescue their kidnapped friends, they both find themselves realising what they have been missing.
Objectively, there isn’t anything wrong with Trolls, but as an adult sharing his 5 cents on the matter, I found it, in a lack of a better word – lacking. Lacking in a way that it doesn’t put much out there for the adult audience (who look over the kids attending the picture) to enjoy. Yup, you heard it here first: Trolls is an entertaining, happy-go-lucky, even frantic at times piece that kids will enjoy and adults will find little to latch onto during its running time.
Long gone is the golden age of western cartoons where different generations could easily gather around the bonfire and put their differences aside just for a brief moment. Trolls is a post-postmodern piece that will only appeal to the youngest members of society.
As long as we’re still targeting demographics and a certain contingent of buying power, we’ll continue to produce pieces that only one particular bunch will enjoy. And I firmly believe that you CAN exploit a given genre to a widen frame within a larger demographic and still get some monies in return. Take for example Black Dynamite – a Blaxploitation parody that drains clichés to the max (intentionally) and it’s yet still watchable by every corner of the world population. Or even The Illusionist – a colorful masterpiece of animation that excited both kids and their parents and had a heart-breaking story of accepting reality as it is. And Lion King nurtured several grim themes throughout which were all accepted by the children like it was no one’s business.
Not so much with Trolls.
See, features like Angry Birds, Big Hero 6 and Trolls have multiple issues, with the most blatant one being that they’re overly Americanized to a threshold that deters the worldwide audience, pushing away moviegoers with critical thought with its stupidity and encouraging an excessive, consumerism lifestyle that is unseen in other parts of the globe. But, enough with our little rant since it’s helping no one.
The plot steals the overly used cosmogonic battle between good and evil. Evil as embodied by the bigger, gloomy trolls VS good as seen in the overly happy and frantic auto-tuned good trolls. Amidst the good ones however, a seemingly depressed individual is sick of everything and treats life with sarcasm always when he gets the chance to. So naturally, the good trolls try to convert our individual and put a smile on his frowning face. And the good trolls win. The End.
Trolls by Walt Dohrn, Mike Mitchell, starring Anna Kendrick, Justin Timberlake, Zooey Deschanel, John Cleese and a plethora of other celebrities and whatnots, feels like an extended music video that just doesn’t, for the love of god, have enough redeeming qualities to call itself a movie.
Sorry to be the Troll here, but Trolls was just not that good a film.