I never saw...no, experienced Troll 2 until I watched it to research this article. I have vague memories of seeing a film that freaked me out when I was a kid where a guy turns into a cocoon and basically explodes into a rain forest in his apartment, but as it turns out, that was in the first movie, apparently. I'd heard that the sequel was incredibly bad, but I had no idea what to expect. For some strange reason, none of my friends felt like sitting through this cinematic masterpiece with me, and after watching it alone, I have to advise you not to do that. Not because it's too terrifying to behold on one's own, but because you'll be wanting to turn and make snarky comments to the person next to you, and when there's nobody there, you'll do it anyway and then feel all weird about it. The point is, this is definitely a movie to be mocked with other people, preferrably while drinking, smoking, or snorting cocaine off a hooker's backside (which, coincidentally, is how one can only assume how the script for this film came to exist in the first place). Surprisingly though, even a movie this bad can still contain important life lessons, and I'm about to share some of them with you here.
LESSON #1: Never under any circumstances eat anything green.
If you take away any one valuable life lesson from this movie, this has to be it. The cardinal rule of dealing with goblins (despite the title, they all seem to be goblins in this movie...you see, the filmmakers wanted to capitalize on the extremely well known name brand recognition of the first film) is that you don't eat any food that they offer you, under any circumstances. Especially if it's green (which it pretty much all is). If you do, you will start oozing green goo from your orifaces (yes, even down there) and turn into a plant person. Once you are a plant person, the goblins can eat you, because they are all vegetarians. This is as sound an argument I have ever heard against eating vegetables, so children, take note and remember this the next time your parents try to make you eat your greens.
LESSON #2: When all else fails, pee on something.
At one point in the movie, the Waits family is about to sit down and enjoy a nice green spread of food that was left out for them by the creepy family they are temporarily exchanging homes with, when suddenly young Joshua's deceased grandfather Seth manifests as a Peeping Tom ghost in the window and tells him that he has to stop them from eating or they'll become goblin food. Joshua doesn't know how to convince them to stop eating so his grandfather uses his magic ghost powers to stop time for a few moments to give Joshua a little time to think. Joshua paces around the table, studying his family, and rather than simply removing all the food and throwing it away, he decides the only course of action available to him is to stand on the table and pee on everything. But when you really think about it, this is a pretty amazing solution to most of life's problems.
LESSON #3: Small town folk are creepy.
Okay, so I get that all the townfolk in Nilbog are actually goblins who are disguising themselves as humans, but even if they weren't they'd still be creepy as hell. At one point the some of the characters are walking through town and noticing how everything seems to be abandoned, but as soon as they walk away from the General Store pretty much the entire town walks out from some back room and creepily stares at them as they walk away. And this one kid goes to the General Store to get some food and the hillbilly townsfolk all just stand outside staring at him like they want to fuck him six different ways as he awkwardly shuffles past them to go inside. I'm pretty sure that if I had to walk through the Hillbilly Fuckathon Gauntlet to get into a store, I'd somehow find a way to hold off and make my purchases elsewhere.
LESSON #4: Goblins are tricky, subtle creatures.
Goblins are among the craftiest, most clever creatures known to man, who often leave such subtle clues that their machinations go completely unnoticed by society. Who but the most avid Word Search enthusiast after all, would dare to dream that the name of their town Nilbog was in fact the word "Goblin" backwards! This is the kind of deft word trickery that would cause Sherlock Holmes himself to wail and gnash his teeth in frustration! Why it's only through dumb luck (cursed mirrors!) that young Joshua Waits happens to stumble upon this realization regarding the town's name, and is in no way a result of it actually being obvious enough that someone who's completed only half of the first Hooked on Phonics lesson could figure out. Goblins are tricksy. Tricksy little buggers they are.
LESSON #5: If you see an obviously traumatized woman in trouble,
tackling her is the best course of action.
As any crisis counselor is likely to tell you, if you see a clearly traumatized woman you have never met before fleeing from some kind of danger, the first thing you have to do is contain the situation. This is often accomplished with an agressive football tackle, because you have to forcably insert yourself into her problem in order to fix it. You then pin her down with a firm "comfort hug" to let her know that even though you are a stranger, you care about her well being and want to help. Once this has been achieved it's very unlikely that she will be totally freaking out on you--she will likely be composed enough to calmly explain her situation and ask for you to apply your rippling, manly biceps towards fixing her problem (Note: if you yourself are a woman, this bit about "manly biceps" may be awkward, but just roll with it). Then follows "teh secks", I'm sure.
LESSON #6: Trying to impress a girl is never worth the trouble.
After this guy Arnold tackles the fleeing girl, thus ensuring that she actually doesn't get away from her pursuers, he turns to see a small horde of goblins chasing after her. Apparently he's run into small hordes of goblins before, because he doesn't seem the least bit fazed to run into them now. In an effort to impress his new ladyfriend, he saunters up to the goblin group in his best tough guy act, and sternly tells them to leave the little lady alone, no doubt imagining that this will lead to all kinds of sexytimes later in the back of his friend Elliot's RV. The goblins seem unimpressed with this, and as he smugly walks back to join his special lady, one of the goblins chucks a spear and impales him in the shoulder, thus proving that it's never worth all the bother of trying to impress a girl. He should have just stayed out of it.
LESSON #7: Just say no to creepy store clerks offering you
free unrefrigerated milk.
Holly Waits's would-be boyfriend Elliot has come to Nilbog to stalk her in his RV, bringing his friends along for the ride. One of these friends, Drew, decides to go into Nilbog to pick up some groceries, and has a creepy run-in with the proprieter of the General Store (who will also turn out to be the town's mailman and dog catcher, no doubt) who is way, way too interested in giving him some of their famous Nilbog milk. Based on the way the clerk was acting, I would have assumed his interest was purely sexual in nature, but it turns out that the Nilbog milk has all the nutitious ingredients needed to turn you into a plant-person. What gets me is that Drew isn't at all weirded out by the fact that the General Store is barely stocked at all, all of the milk is sitting out totally unrefrigerated on a shelf, and the guy in the store is so fucking desperate for him to take it that he offers it to him for free. None of this sends up a warning flag? Really? Drew takes the milk without a second thought, and on his way back to the RV stops to have a drink, and seems surpised to discover it has the consistency of liquid chalk. He throw it on the ground in disgust and it slowly oozes out of the bottle.
LESSON #8: Don't trust the television if it starts talking to you.
Elliot's other friend Brent is entertaining himself alone in the RV by watching television as his friends are all busy turning into tree people and being eaten, when the program he was watching suddenly goes to static and is replaced by a view that looks suspiciously like the woods outside. An attractive woman with a creepy grin and an ear of corn walks up to the screen and tells him, yes, him, the guy in the RV, that he should come outside, because she's out there totally being all hot and stuff, and oh by the way, she has corn. We the viewer know of course that this is the Goblin Queen, but poor Brent has no idea. If we could but yell at the TV to warn him. To Brent this is just a totally crazy psychotic woman with corn and some kind of supernatural powers to manipulate reality, so you can see where he'd show an unfortunate lack of concern as he goes outside to check it out.
LESSON #9: Do NOT involve corn on the cob in your lovemaking.
After Brent has invited the Goblin Queen into the RV, she tries to seduce him by showing a little leg, but it's showing him the ear of corn that actually does the trick. She asks him if he likes corn, and he eagerly nods his assent, only he says that he loves popcorn, which isn't quite what she's brought with her. She says that's no problem, that all they have to do is heat it up. What follows has to be my favorite worst scene in the movie, where they awkwardly make out around this corn on the cob, and as they do so, popcorn magically falls from the ceiling like rain, covering them, and eventually nearly drowning poor Brett in its buttery goodness.
LESSON #10: A double-decker bologna sandwich can get you out of a fix.
Near the end of the movie Joshua is in the Goblin Queen's lair, totally surrounded by her minions and seemingly at the end of his rope. In desperation he checks the backpack that his ghostly grandfather has given him and finds a carefully prepared double-decker bologna sandwich (a spectral one, I'm assuming). He takes a big bite out of the sandwich, "tainting" his blood with its meat and thus grossing out the vegetarian goblins, who no longer want to eat him. They recoil in horror and run away, thus allowing him time enough to regroup and save the day in whatever stupid way (something involving touching a rock, I don't know). The point is, if he didn't have this sandwich available to him, he would have been goblin food. Always pack a lunch. You never know when it might come in handy.
These are the most important life lessons that I learned from watching Troll 2, but a film this dense, this epic, is chock full of good advice on how to live a better life. If you gleaned your own different lessons from the film, please share them in the comments section below!
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