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A Troll in Central Park (1994)

5.2
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Ratings: 5.2/10 from 3,158 users  
Reviews: 26 user | 8 critic

A friendly troll with a magic green thumb grows one flower too many for the queen, whose laws require all trolls to act meanly, be ugly and scare humans whenever possible. As a punishment, ... See full summary »

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(screenplay), (story), 4 more credits »
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Title: A Troll in Central Park (1994)

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Cast

Cast overview:
...
Stanley (voice)
...
Gnorga (voice)
...
Llort (voice)
...
Alan (voice) (as Jonathon Price)
...
Hillary (voice)
...
Gus (voice)
Tawny Sunshine Glover ...
Rosie (voice)
...
Generic Pansy (voice)
...
Boss (voice)
Pat Musick ...
Snuffy (voice) (as Pat Musik)
Edit

Storyline

A friendly troll with a magic green thumb grows one flower too many for the queen, whose laws require all trolls to act meanly, be ugly and scare humans whenever possible. As a punishment, he is exiled to a world of concrete, where he should live a life of proper trolldom: Manhattan. But of all places, his pod lands in Central Park, where he feels right at home. He befriends a young brother and sister, out for the day unknown to their parents, and must immediately protect them from the queen's attack. In the process, the boy learns responsibility, and the unpopular queen is overthrown. Written by Cynan Rees <cynanrees@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

troll | queen | flower | green thumb | cave | See more »

Taglines:

You can do anything! See more »


Certificate:

G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

7 October 1994 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Troll in Central Park  »

Box Office

Gross:

$71,368 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(as Dolby Stereo)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Co-director Gary Goldman said during an interview that the reason the movie did so poorly at the box office was the fact that it was released without any promotion, and that release was limited. He also stated that its distributor Warner Bros. did not have any confidence in the film. See more »

Goofs

During the reprise of "Absolutely Green", some of the cities have been covered in plants in different points (the World Trade Center is an example, which was covered in three different points). See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
[Stanley runs and bumps into a troll from behind]
Troll: Hey! Watch yourself!
[Stanley accidentally grows a flower]
Troll: Say, what was that?
[the troll laughs as Stanley drops his bag behind him and the flower jumps in]
Troll: Oh, for a minute, I thought I saw one of them, um, um, uh, flower things.
[the troll laughs]
Troll: That's a relief. I'd sure hate to have to tell the queen. Oh, well, have a rotten day!
[as the troll walks off, Stanley picks up his bag and waves]
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

After the credits are over, an image of Stanley appears. His green thumb lights up, and the words "A Don Bluth Presentation" appear, then they vanish. See more »


Soundtracks

Friends Like Us
Music by Barry Mann
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Oh Don Bluth... from making "An American Tail"... to this...
8 January 2014 | by (Argentina) – See all my reviews

In the starry sky of the history of animation, Don Bluth stars as one of the greatest directors to ever grace with his works. He achieved the record for the highest-grossing animated film outside Disney not once, but three times (An American Tail, The Land Before Time, Anastasia).

It is said that Don Bluth was the sole major factor that turned Disney to re-organize their strategies, make "The Little Mermaid", and ultimately lead to the Renaissance Age Of Animation.

But sadly, now that Disney was awaken again, Don Bluth was overwhelmed with the competition against them. The issue is complex and I will explain it in my upcoming review of "The Pebble And The Penguin", which was the following Don Bluth film.

Now, I will talk about "A Troll In Central Park".

Well the technical features are high-quality, one of the things that Don Bluth kept in all his filmography no matter if his films were bad. The film has a colorful, contrasting, lavish animation, one of the things Don Bluth never compromised. It even has that style of the '30s-'40s (Snow White, Pinocchio, etc. ) feature films and short cartoons in the gestures and mannerisms of characters. Rotoscoping, employed in the children's parents, is also a nice thing to watch.

The music also saves what otherwise would be a forgettable film. "Gnorga The Queen Of Mean" surprises the public with the sudden modernity of a Pop rock tune like those of the '80s and '90s (why is it that most of the times, the villains have the best songs in a film?). "Absolutely Green" is a poignant song of the kind that makes your eyes watery, complete with a children choir. The fact that is played in two powerful, nicely executed moments in the films surely will make, at least, the youngest of the children cry. Also the background music, just like the animation, is employed here just like Dumbo and other films of the early Disney era.

Now, it is when you start analyzing the human features that the film starts showing its lacks... Tiger and Fievel had an excellent chemistry going on in "An American Tail"... but it's hard to tell why the same voice actors (playing Stanley and Gus, respectively) didn't work as well here. Gnorga has the absolutely best performance of all the film, with an outstanding job of Cloris Leachman in a rather weird role, who clearly enjoys being so hammy and troll-like. Llort is the other performance that passes the exam, although Gnorga wins all the awards by far. As an Argentine I tried to find the dub for this film, but it was never screened in Latin America so only the Spanish dub from Spain was made. I watched the Spanish dub and then the original English. I liked the original one for the voices of Stanley, the kids and their parents, but the Spanish dub is way better for the voices of Gnorga and Llort. Wow, even the Gnorga's song is upgraded from their pretty simple original lyrics and adds way more vocabulary and intricate things!

Now, about the story... well, it's hard to call this a "story". And mind you, I'm a Don Bluth fan but even I admit this film failures. The film has many scenes and passages that seem shallow and simply don't go nowhere, plot-wise, such as Gus and Rosie playing in the park with balloons, boats or butterflies. The musical number of the flowers to cheer Rosie, in another passage, also qualifies. All these scenes make the film seem more like an "anecdote" of the children stroll in the park, but then again, this method can still be done well. Miyazaki proved in "My Neighbor Totoro" that you don't have to have a plot-driven, rather "Western-style" kind of storytelling, but also you can go in another way, with a rather "anecdote" or "trip" kind of story. But you don't see in "A Troll In Central Park" the gracefulness in which Miyazaki could present those kind of stories.

The film also seems to lack more soul, "Rock-a-Doodle" and "Thumbelina" are also among the failures of Don Bluth, but it was their loads and loads of characters that helped to give more substance and charm to the films. Here you have too few characters, in a film with many claustrophobic sceneries (a dark kingdom, an underground cave, barren lands...)

And when all is said and done, you have to look up to the info and find that this film budget was of $23.5 million, but only made $71,368... no words. This was one of the lowest grossing films of all time, one of the most notable box-office bombs (though not the greatest bomb of Don Bluth)

So, even with the animation, the music, and Gnorga to redeem the film and lift the rating, this is such a poorly executed, so underwhelming film, with so many fails and lacks, and such a failure for costing $23.5 million and only making 71 thousand dollars, that I will rate it 3/10. The reason I'm not rating this 1/10 is because of the aforementioned lifting factors.

But luckily, even if this is the worst Don Bluth film, both critically and financially, "A Troll In Central Park" will never be among the 10 worst animated films of all time, not even among the 20 worst ever... for Don Bluth, even in the misery and the mediocrity, still had his signature charm and willpower that made him one day leave Disney, and start an animation studio of his own.


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