Troll 2 is a 1990 horror B movie directed by Claudio Fragasso (under the pseudonym Drake Floyd) and starring Michael Stephenson, George Hardy, Margo Prey, Connie McFarland, Deborah Reed and Jason Wright. Although produced under the title Goblins, United States distributors were skeptical about the film's ability to succeed as a standalone picture and renamed it Troll 2 in an attempt to market it as a sequel to the 1986 Empire Pictures film Troll. The two films, however, have no connection, and no trolls are actually depicted in Troll 2.
The plot concerns a family pursued by vegetarian goblins who seek to transform them into plants so that they can eat them. The English-language script was written by Fragasso and his wife Rosella Drudi, neither of whom actually spoke fluent English at the time. Despite filming the movie in Utah, and casting the movie entirely with American actors (many of whom had no prior acting experience and had responded to the casting call hoping to be extras), Fragasso also employed an exclusively Italian crew, who likewise spoke no English. The resultant communication breakdown, coupled with the cast's lack of experience and Fragasso's insistence that his script be performed verbatim, has led to the movie being considered one of the worst movies ever made.
Because of the film's reputation, it has gained a very large cult following. A critically acclaimed documentary produced by one of the actors (Michael Stephenson), Best Worst Movie, was released in 2010, chronicling the film's large fanbase.
A family vacationing in a small town discovers the entire town is inhabited by goblins in disguise as humans, who plan to eat them.
The film begins with the main character, a child named Joshua Waits (Michael Stephenson), being contacted by his dead grandfather, Seth (Robert Ormsby). Seth informs Joshua of evil creatures known as goblins roaming the world who force or trick humans into consuming poisoned food which will turn them into the goblin's favorite type of food, vegetables. The goblins would then eat them.
Meanwhile Joshua's sister, Holly (Connie McFarland), receives a visit from her boyfriend Elliot (Jason Wright). She accuses him of being a homosexual because he spends large amounts of time with his friends Brent, Arnold and Drew (David McConnell, Darren Ewing and Jason Steadman respectively). Since she and the rest of the family are going to Nilbog for a holiday, he offers to meet her on the way. She agrees but under the condition that he will come alone without his friends.
However, Elliot does not turn up at their meeting point and his parents, Michael (George Hardy) and Diane (Margo Prey), go on without him. They meet him further up the route but she angrily dismisses him since he is accompanied by his friends. Joshua has a dream that his family are actually goblins in disguise preparing to consume him but wakes up to find Seth again, this time posing as a hitchhiker. Joshua tells his parents to stop the car and runs up to him. Seth informs Joshua that their holiday destination is in fact the kingdom of the goblins he mentioned earlier, and urges him to convince his parents to turn back. Joshua is unable to, and the family arrive at Nilbog.
Meanwhile one of Elliot's friends, Arnold goes out for a walk and meets a woman being pursued by the goblins. Running away, they enter the house of the goblins' druid leader, Creedence Leonore Gielgud (Deborah Reed), who uses the "Stonehenge Magic Stone" to give the goblins power. Creedence dupes the two into drinking a magic potion which causes the woman to disintegrate into a puddle of vegetable matter which is then eaten by the goblins, and Arnold is morphed into a plant.
Joshua looks into a car mirror hoping to contact Seth again but only succeeds in noticing from the reflection that Nilbog is Goblin spelled backwards. He concludes that the area must be their kingdom and skateboards off to an abandoned church where the goblins are listening to a sermon espousing the evils of eating meat. However, he is noticed and brought to the basement where they attempt to feed him spiked ice cream. Michael walks in and grows slightly suspicious, taking Joshua out.
The family returns to find that the village has prepared a surprise party to "make up for the misunderstanding earlier". Joshua runs upstairs hoping to contact Seth but instead is confronted by Creedence in goblin form. Seth appears and chops her hand off with an axe, causing her to retreat back to her house.the meantime, Creedence deals with Elliot's one remaining friend, Brent, by drowning him in popcorn.
Joshua, Elliot, Holly, Michael and Diane hold a séance to communicate with Seth, who tells them that he has ten minutes before he disappears from the mortal world permanently. Just then the goblins gain entry and Joshua is sent to Creedence's house somehow. The rest of the family go upstairs, chased by the goblins. Seth tells Joshua to put his hands on the Magic Stone and focus in order to defeat the goblins and gives him a bag which he must only open if he is in mortal danger.
During the epilogue, Diane is killed by consuming spiked food left in the house. Joshua discovers her corpse being eaten by the goblins.
- Michael Stephenson as Joshua Waits
- George Hardy as Michael Waits
- Margo Prey as Diana Waits
- Connie McFarland as Holly Waits
- Robert Ormsby as Seth
- Deborah Reed as Creedence Leonore Gielgud
- Jason Wright as Elliot Cooper
- Darren Ewing as Arnold
- Jason Steadman as Drew
- David McConnell as Brent
- Michele Abrams as Wood Tales Girl ( the girl who got turn into slime and got eaten by the goblins)
- Chris Conroy as Goblin
- Jay Thomas as Goblin (cameo roll)
Troll 2 is widely considered to be of poor quality. The film has a 6% on Rotten Tomatoes. In fact, for a time the film was rated as the worst film of all time by IMDB.com. The goblins' costumes, designed by cult erotic actress Laura Gemser, consist of burlap clothes stuffed with foam rubber, and latex masks, only one of which featured a movable mouth; the musical score consists of only a few synthesized themes repeated numerous times. In addition, the acting and dialogue have become notorious for their camp value. The scene where Darren Ewing's character states that he will be eaten next has become an internet meme, often appearing in videos alongside the "Garbage Day" meme from Silent Night, Deadly Night Part 2.
Troll 2 was given RiffTrax treatment by Michael J. Nelson (of Mystery Science Theater 3000 fame) and special guest Richard Kyanka from Something Awful.
The movie was filmed in Morgan, Utah and Porterville, Utah, in the summer of 1989. In 2007, A major Troll 2 event took place in Morgan called Nilbog Invasion. The Alamo Drafthouse Cinema's Rolling Roadshow turned Morgan into "Nilbog" again for a weekend, and screened the film for an audience of fans from around the world. Much of the cast attended and appeared in a panel discussion, as well as the writers and director of the film. Director Claudio Fragasso was presented with the key to the city by the Mayor of Morgan.
At the event, Fragasso and writer Rossella Drudi announced plans for a sequel to Troll II, and the audience was polled for their opinion on what the film should be called. The winning title was Troll II: Part II. Fragasso later asked Stephenson to appear in the sequel.
In December 2009, late-night host Conan O'Brien recommended Troll II on his list of DVDs and books in his "New Oprah" segment.
MGM has announced that "Troll 2" will be released on DVD and Blu-ray in the United States on October 5, 2010 in honor of the 20th anniversary of the film's release.
- The entire cast went to a casting call hoping to be extras, and ended up in lead roles.
- Once had a 0% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. As of July 2014, it has a 6% rating.
- Director Claudio Fragasso is still angry about the film's poor reception. He crashed a cast reunion Q&A. After he was escorted out of the room, he heckled the cast from the hallway, calling them "liars" and "dogs" as they answered fan questions.
- Michael Stephenson didn't see the film until Christmas 1991, when he received a VHS tape of the movie as a gift.
- George Hardy beat out more than 100 other men for the role of Michael Waits.
- Troll 2 at the Internet Movie Database
- Troll 2 at AllMovie
- Troll 2 at Rotten Tomatoes
- Troll 2 at Wikipedia
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