Movie review by
Jeffrey M. Anderson, Common Sense Media
Trollhunter Movie Poster Image
Some violence, language in fun Norwegian monster movie.
  • PG-13
  • 2011
  • 90 minutes

Parents say

age 12+
Based on 5 reviews

Kids say

age 9+
Based on 4 reviews

Did this review miss something on diversity?

Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive, diverse representations in books, TV shows, and movies. Want to help us help them? Suggest a diversity update

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages

At first, the characters don't quite know what they're getting themselves into. But despite being scared, they bravely continue on, showing teamwork and problem-solving. They eventually triumph over some very large odds.

Positive Role Models & Representations

The troll hunter character is a bit grumpy and jaded, though he's good at his job and seems to care about the results. The filmmakers exhibit bravery, curiosity, and responsibility.


Lots of fantasy-based creature violence, with chasing, fighting, and deaths; trolls are killed on screen, and humans off screen. Guns are seen, and shots are fired at trolls. There are some bodily fluids, but mostly non-human. Viewers see a dead bear, and one human gets a scratch wound. Viewers also see some nasty scar tissue on the troll hunter in one shot.


Except for some brief mentions of troll mating habits, not an issue.


The spoken language is Norwegian, but the subtitles include several uses of "s--t," plus "ass," "hell," "piss," and "Christ" (used as an exclamation).

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this Norwegian (with English subtitles) horror comedy is presented as "found" documentary footage (much like The Blair Witch Project, though it's far less scary). There's plenty of fantasy-based creature violence as the trolls fight with humans; some wounds and icky bodily fluids (mostly non-human) are on display. Subtitles include several uses of "s--t," as well as a few other iffy words. The college-age teen characters are brave, curious, and resourceful, and despite a few downbeat notes here and there, the movie is a lot of fun (an American remake is in the works) -- it could be a good introduction to foreign-language movies for teens who might resist.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byRarityfan August 12, 2019

I'm a bad troll!

Not to be confused with famly friendly troll films, as this is an handheld Norwegian horror comedy. After a class viewing there can be talk about Norwegian folk... Continue reading
Adult Written bytimhulio May 17, 2021

Enjoyable adventure and a good introduction to subtitles

Free from sex or violence, and with mild peril and moments of tension, this is a great film to introduce braver kids to subtitled movies. The atmosphere, candid... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written byCane toad February 27, 2017
Teen, 13 years old Written byMinto36 January 2, 2014

Not for under about 8/9

I love the home-video style. There isn't much violence and the most strong language is sh*t

What's the story?

In rural Norway, three college film students set out to make a documentary about a mysterious bear poacher (Otto Jespersen). After much persistence, they track him down and learn about his real job: He has the thankless task of making sure that the country's troll population is under control. And if any trolls get out of hand, it's his job to hunt and kill them. (The bears are merely a diversion, since the public at large can never know about the existence of trolls.) He entrusts this secret to the crew, and they set out to document his latest adventures, including collecting a blood sample from a troll with rabies and eventually fighting the giant Jotnar, an enormous troll that no other human has ever seen.

Is it any good?

TROLLHUNTER is a genre film that's both unusual and entertaining. The unfortunate prologue about how the movie's footage was "discovered" will draw comparisons -- perhaps unfavorable -- to The Blair Witch Project, but that's where the comparison ends. Directed by Andre Ovredal, Trollhunter is a great deal funnier and more fun than Blair Witch, with wilder special effects and more creative monsters. Plus, the movie cooks up an astonishing amount of troll lore, including names of species, mating habits, diet, lifespan, and much more, including a scientific explanation as to what turns them to stone.

Though Ovredal no doubt selected the "faux documentary" format to save money, it nonetheless makes the movie a wry and subtle commentary on our media-obsessed world: Working in the most secretive of occupations, the troll hunter nonetheless succumbs to a reality-show grilling on camera. Jespersen -- a popular comedian in Norway -- gives a wonderful performance as the jaded hunter.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the movie's violence. Was it realistic? Was it scary? What other impact did it have on you?

  • Is the troll hunter character a good guy, or a good role model? Is he someone to root for? What makes us root for certain characters and not others?

  • The film is presented as a "found footage" documentary. How might it have been different without that angle?


Movie details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love scary movies

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate

Streaming options powered by JustWatch

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

Our ratings are based on child development best practices. We display the minimum age for which content is developmentally appropriate. The star rating reflects overall quality.

Learn how we rate