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Movie reviews

TROLL HUNTER Horror. Starring Otto Jespersen, Glenn Erland Tosterud, Johanna Morck, Tomas Alf Larsen, Urmila Berg-Domaas. Directed by Andre Ovredal. Cert 15A

The 'found footage' horror sub-genre is becoming a tad tired at this stage (by all accounts, last week's Apollo 18 representing a nadir), but this Norwegian entrant to the field has plenty of sass, originality and humour going for it.

We follow a camera crew from a film school who, as part of a project, spend a week with bear hunters in a beautiful and desolate part of the country. Luckily -- or possibly not -- for our young friends they stumble upon bears who've been ripped to shreds, notice a strange man lurking on the fringes of each scene and decide to follow him.

This is Hans (Otto Jespersen), a man employed by an arm of the Norwegian government to act as a troll hunter, keeping the creatures most people assumed were the stuff of legend away from the general public.

Troll Hunter plays some very good jokes with the mythology of trolls, works wonders in bringing them to life with CGI and knows when to ramp up the scary stuff, marking out director Andre Ovredal as a young man who can expect to field plenty of calls from Hollywood in the near future.

Chris Columbus has acquired the US remake rights, so go see this while it's still fresh.

A LONELY PLACE TO DIE Thriller. Starring Melissa George, Ed Speelers, Eamonn Walker, Sean Harris, Kate MacGowan. Directed by Julian Gilbey. Cert 15A

Well, it's not every week that you get not one but two movies toplined by Australian actresses who received award nominations for appearing in In Treatment, but that's the case today.

Melissa George (Triangle/30 Days of Night) plays Alison, one of a group of climbers on a week-long trip to the Scottish Highlands who come upon a young girl who's been kidnapped and buried in an underground prison. Naturally, they spring her only to find themselves hunted across the eye-catching terrain by the kidnappers.

First-time director Julian Gilbey is a little too busy with his camera at times, but keeps the first half of the film ticking along nicely until things become too silly for words in the final third.

Still, it's entertaining enough and George is excellent as the Ripley-like Alison determined that her new-found charge come to no harm.