Films/Theater Reviews — 30 July 2010
A Horror Holiday: Troll 2, Boston, MA

Recently and with a break from long overdue, I found myself up in Boston with the opportunity to catch a midnight movie at the historic Coolidge Corner Theatre. The theatre is located in Brookline, Mass. and is a fantastic place to see a film because it maintains the feel of a movie palace of yesteryear, and is very similar to Manhattan’s own grandiose Ziegfield, albeit on a much smaller scale.

Horror fans can rejoice because the midnight movie being shown was Troll 2.  As a fiend of the genre myself, I have wanted to see this film in theaters for a while now since I missed the New York run of it at the Landmark Sunshine theater on Houston Street.  Now, the film has been gaining a wider cult following more recently because of the documentary, “Best Worst Movie,” which features the making of Troll 2.  However, as bad as the movie is, the film still comes in at a close second place to “The Room” for ‘Best Worst’ movie.  The acting is terrible and cheesy.  The script is horrible as well, and the storyline is virtually non-existent.  But there is admittedly some sort of filmmaking technique (visually) that went into creating this movie, which The Room definitely lacks.

Troll 2 came out theatrically in 1990.  Italian filmmaker Claudio Fragasso, who went under the porn star sounding name of “Drake Floyd” for this picture (likely so he wouldn’t embarrass his fellow countrymen- Italy does have a rich history of stylized horror films), directed it.  The film was shot entirely in Utah and the entire cast consists of complete unknowns from that state.  The acting is extremely campy, which is the main reason the film has risen to cult status.  YouTube the Troll 2 “Oh my God” scene to see exactly what I am talking about.  Perhaps the best part about the movie is the fact that there are actually no trolls in this film (besides the title of course).

The premise of the film follows the Waits family as they house-swap with a family from the town of “Nilbog.”  The main character Joshua (Michael Stephenson), has constant visions of his dead grandfather Seth (Robert Ormsby), alerting him to beware of evil Goblins. “Grandpa!”

Against Joshua’s wishes, the family heads to Nilbog for some good old-fashioned vacation time.  Nilbog (which of course is goblin spelled backwards) is a town run by none other than goblins, masked as humans.  Their goal is to eat any humans around them and do so by subsequently forcing humans to devour neon green colored food and drinks, thus priming the humans for goblin consumption (and turns them into trees as well, for some reason).

In one scene, the Waits family apparently has no problem eating ‘Slimer’ colored food until Joshua freeze-frames the scene (a nice Saved by the Bell moment) and pisses all over the food.  Joshua’s father, Michael (George Hardy- who really gives it his acting best) responds by saying, “You don’t piss on hospitality!” As the film progresses, humans begin getting eaten by the goblins, but in the end, Joshua, with the help of a bologna sandwich, saves the day: “A double decker baloney sandwich!”

If you are a fan of bad horror films, I highly recommend seeing Troll 2 at a midnight screening.  If you are up in the Boston area definitely check out the Coolidge Corner Theatre.  The website for the theatre ( states,

“The Coolidge Corner Theatre is New England’s most successful independent, not-for-profit cinema. Built as a church in 1906, it was redesigned as an Art Deco movie palace in 1933 and has never closed its doors to the public since then. Located in the heart of Brookline, Massachusetts, it was the community’s first movie theater and now, a non-profit foundation since 1988, it celebrates the experience of cinema by presenting the finest international, documentary, animated, and independent film selections and series.”

Tons of great films are constantly being shown there, from art house to cheesy midnight movies.  The theatre’s film selection seems to cater to the moviegoer, which is refreshing to see that a film does not have to be big budget or a classic film to be shown in a theater.  The word is that they show many great horror films in October around Halloween, so a repeat trip to the Boston area definitely seems necessary.

- Seymour Winterbush

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  1. Thanks