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Thursday, June 17, 2021

Review: Cannibal Troll

Director: Scott Jeffrey and Rebecca Matthews

Screenplay: Scott Jeffrey 

Year: 2021

A group of friends goes for a walk in the woods to celebrate a bachelorette party for one of them. They do not know that there lives a fearsome and voracious creature that feeds on humans in that forest. Once in the woods, the women are chased by the creature and fight to get out of there alive. 

As the name suggests, "Cannibal Troll" is a low-budget indie horror film-themed about a cannibal troll. Its creature slasher style puts us for almost the entire duration of the film in the victims’ shoes as the creature attacks them. But don't be fooled by the name; the movie doesn't have a lot of gore or disturbing visuals, as the title suggests.

The film’s problems are exposed in the opening scene, and the style it pursues is clear. A couple is trapped in a house from which they manage to escape but are intercepted by the troll. The performances in this scene are horrible, as is the troll costume, which looks like an item you can get at a costume store. Once the protagonists are presented, the performances improve to the point of being tolerable, but they are still of low quality. 

After seeing the ineffective costume of the troll, the only hope we have is that it is violent and grotesque and delight in the gore. If there could be something more disappointing than the troll costume, it is the lack of gore, especially with the worn title. If there is some violence, but the tight budget only allows to suggest a lot of what happens and not to show much.

Then comes the questionable script by Scott Jeffrey, co-directing the film with Rebecca Matthews, who has distinguished themselves by directing and producing a myriad of low-budget, lower-quality horror films. With this, it is clear that I did not enjoy the plot of the film, which is too linear, repetitive, and predictable, and whose dialogues will make more than one raise an eyebrow because of how flat and unreal they are. 

"Cannibal Troll" offers a creature that lives up to what the title promises: a cannibal troll, yet it fails at all else. The plot is predictable, the dialogue simple and unrealistic, and the acting too weak. The creature is nothing more than a cheap Halloween costume, and the lack of gore or some scene that at least works in its intention to startle the viewer are disappointing.

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