By Audrey Isabel L. Pe, 15
Multiple Intelligence International School
Small bodies and long, flowing hair characterize the multi-generational doll known as Trolls. From the creators of Shrek, the Troll toys were given life and were reimagined as characters in a new movie with all-star voices and stellar art.
Enter the world of overly optimistic Trolls, whose sunny personalities and incessant singing and dancing bring joy to anyone who eats them. The Bergens, miserable creatures who consume Trolls for happiness, keep the Trolls in a caged habitat that they soon escape. For years the Trolls lived in happy and carefree existence, until a Bergen found their new habitat and kidnapped many of their kind. The film narrates the journey of two Trolls, iridescent Poppy (voiced by Anna Kendrick) and pessimistic Branch (Justin Timberlake), who together go on a wild adventure to save their friends from being eaten by the Bergens.
At first glance, it’s easy to dismiss Trolls as a purely kiddie movie. But it’s so much more than what meets the eye. The protagonists of the film, Poppy and Branch, symbolize optimists and pessimists, respectively. As they journey to find the kidnapped Trolls and work together to achieve a common goal, the audience learns about teamwork and what it means to make sacrifices for the good of all.
The premise of the film’s conflict is how Trolls are eaten in order to give happiness to the perennially miserable and grumpy Bergens. Throughout the plot, the characters of the film display in a subtle—yet thoughtful—way how joy comes from inside and not out. Food doesn’t equate to happiness, and materialistic things are not true sources of joy. The Trolls taught me that joy comes from friends, family, and the meaningful relationships that you share with others.
Throughout the film, the audience gets a sensory experience (especially when watched in 3D). The top-notch felt and scrapbook animation style of Trolls is a cross between cute and creative, as each component of the film looks equally interesting and well thought of. The musical performances are frequent in the film, as they narrate pivotal scenes through covers and original compositions. Parents should recognize the classic tunes of Lionel Richie and Cyndi Lauper.
Overall, Trolls is a great movie for all ages, as its plot foreshadows important morals and its music can bring a smile to anyone’s face. Sing along to a song or two, look on the bright side, and enjoy a whirlwind adventure with Trolls in cinemas near you.
Trolls opens on Nov. 2 in cinemas (also in 3D) from 20th Century Fox and to be distributed by Warner Brothers.