Bergen Trolls

Bergen Trolls: From Myth to Movie Magic in the 'Trolls' movie

Bergen Troll
© 2023 DreamWorks Animation. All Rights Reserved.

The city of Bergen, nestled among the mountains and fjords of Norway, is steeped in myths and legends, with trolls occupying a special place in the city's folklore. These mythical creatures, often depicted as large, old, and somewhat clumsy beings, have been a part of Norwegian storytelling for centuries, embodying the mysteries of the natural world. The fascination with trolls has transcended traditional tales, influencing global cinema, most notably in animated films like DreamWorks Animation's "Trolls."

Bergen Troll in nature

The Roots of Bergen Trolls

In Norwegian folklore, trolls are believed to dwell in the hidden corners of the natural world, from the deep forests to the rugged mountain ranges. These beings are as diverse as the landscapes they inhabit, with their characteristics and temperaments varying widely across stories. Norwegian tales often portray trolls as guardians of treasures, with a particular aversion to sunlight, which is said to turn them to stone.

The city of Bergen, with its rich history and stunning natural surroundings, provides the perfect backdrop for troll legends. Local stories and folk art depict trolls in various lights, from mischievous tricksters to formidable giants, showcasing the depth of Norway's cultural heritage tied to these creatures.

Troll on the mountain

The popularity of trolls in media has had a tangible impact on Bergen and Norway as a whole. Visitors to Bergen are often greeted with troll figurines, art, and souvenirs, reflecting the city's embrace of its mythical heritage. For many tourists, these figures serve as a charming reminder of Norway's rich folklore and the enchanting stories that have captivated humans for generations.

Moreover, films like "Trolls" have sparked a renewed interest in Norwegian culture, encouraging audiences to explore the origins of these tales and the landscapes that inspired them. This cultural exchange underscores the power of storytelling in bridging worlds, bringing global audiences closer to the mystical heart of Norway.

Norwegian Troll

The Trolls movie

The Bergens

The enduring appeal of Norwegian troll mythology has found a vibrant expression in modern media, capturing the imagination of audiences worldwide. The "Trolls" movie, produced by DreamWorks Animation, is a testament to the global fascination with these mythical beings. While the film takes considerable creative liberties, it introduces elements of troll lore to a global audience, reimagined through colorful animation and memorable characters.

In the "Trolls" franchise, trolls are depicted as joyous creatures with a love for music, dance, and happiness, living in a world filled with color and song. This portrayal, while diverging from traditional Norwegian myths, highlights the adaptability of folklore in inspiring creative storytelling that resonates across cultures.

How Bergens are seen in the Trolls movie

© 2023 DreamWorks Animation. All Rights Reserved.

In DreamWorks Animation's "Trolls," the Bergens are initially depicted as monsters, setting the stage for a narrative that explores themes of happiness, acceptance, and transformation. Through the development of their characters and the unfolding of the story, the Bergens are shown in a more sympathetic light, challenging viewers to look beyond stereotypes and embrace the complexity of others. The movie's message is clear: true happiness comes from within and through the connections we make with others, not from external sources. By reimagining the monster trope, "Trolls" delivers a powerful message about the importance of empathy, understanding, and the transformative power of love and friendship.

So how are the Bergens people in real life?

Bergen people

While the Bergens in the "Trolls" movie provide a humorous and imaginative take on troll folklore, the real city of Bergen and its people are defined by their resilience, warmth, and vibrant cultural life. The playful coincidence of the name invites a lighthearted comparison, but the true essence of Bergen is found in its historical depth, communal spirit, and the natural beauty that surrounds it. Bergen, with its unique blend of nature, culture, and history, continues to be a source of inspiration and joy for both its residents and visitors alike, embodying a spirit of happiness that transcends the fictional world of the Trolls movie.

The connection between the personalities of Bergen's people and the Bergens in the "Trolls" movie is more a playful coincidence than a direct correlation. DreamWorks Animation's "Trolls" franchise creatively reimagines the concept of trolls, a common element in Scandinavian folklore, to tell a story of happiness, acceptance, and the power of positivity. The Bergens in the movie, initially depicted as unhappy creatures who believe eating Trolls is the only way to experience joy, ultimately learn that happiness comes from within and through connections with others.

Bergen, Norway.

Bergen Norway

Nestled among seven hills and surrounded by the awe-inspiring fjords of Norway's western coast, Bergen is not just a city; it's a proud declaration of cultural and historical uniqueness. Known for its stunning natural beauty, vibrant Hanseatic heritage, and a lively cultural scene, Bergen stands apart in the Norwegian imagination. It's a place where the local saying, "I'm not from Norway, I'm from Bergen," captures the essence of its distinct identity. Let's look at the playful yet profound rivalry between Bergen and other Norwegian locales, showcasing why Bergenites feel so passionately distinct from their countrymen.

Troll holding ice cream

The Heart of Bergen's Unique Identity


Bergen, Norway's second-largest city, has always danced to its own rhythm, setting itself apart with its rich maritime history, a thriving arts scene, and a famously rainy climate that only adds to its charm. The city's roots as a Hanseatic League trading post have imbued it with a cosmopolitan flair and a sense of independence that resonates through its cobblestone streets and colorful wooden buildings.

The distinctiveness of Bergen is not only geographical but also cultural. Bergenites possess a strong sense of pride in their city's contributions to Norway's history and culture, from the iconic Bryggen wharf, a UNESCO World Heritage site, to the city's role as a birthplace of renowned composers like Edvard Grieg. This pride is often expressed in the playful assertion that they are from Bergen first and Norway second, highlighting a local identity that feels separate from the rest of the country.

The Playful Rivalry with Oslo and Beyond

Oslo Norway

The rivalry between Bergen and Norway's capital, Oslo, encapsulates the city's unique place within the national psyche. While Oslo might be the political and economic heart of Norway, Bergen claims supremacy in the realms of natural beauty, historical significance, and cultural richness. This friendly contention manifests in everything from football matches to debates over which city can claim the best seafood.

Bergen's rivalry with Oslo is often characterized by humor and affectionate teasing, but it underscores a deeper narrative about regional pride and identity in Norway. Bergenites relish the opportunity to remind their fellow Norwegians of their city's unparalleled setting, its resilience through history, and its contributions to Norwegian arts and culture.

Troll in Norway

Embracing "Bergensian" Pride

Bryggen Bergen

The saying "I'm not from Norway, I'm from Bergen" epitomizes the fierce local patriotism that defines the city's inhabitants. This sentiment is more than just words; it's a reflection of a deeply ingrained identity that celebrates Bergen's unique characteristics. The unparalleled natural beauty, the rich history, and the vibrant cultural life all contribute to a sense of belonging that is distinctly "Bergensian."

This pride is evident in the way locals talk about their city, engage with their community, and preserve their traditions. From the annual Bergen International Festival to the bustling fish market and the lively streets of Bryggen, every aspect of city life is infused with a sense of pride and a desire to maintain the unique spirit of Bergen.

The Spirit of Bergen and its People

Bergen at night

Bergen, known for its stunning natural beauty, rich cultural heritage, and vibrant city life, has a spirit that is distinctly different from the fictional depiction of the Bergens. The people of Bergen are renowned for their resilience, warmth, and a strong sense of community—qualities that have helped shape the city's unique identity over centuries. Despite the city's often rainy weather, Bergenites maintain a positive outlook on life, taking pride in their city's history, natural landscapes, and cultural contributions to Norway and beyond.

The Playful Nature of the "Trolls" Connection

troll warning sign

The connection between Bergen's people and the Bergens in the "Trolls" movie can be seen as a playful nod to the city's name rather than a reflection of the people's personalities. The movie taps into the rich vein of troll mythology prevalent in Scandinavian folklore, using it as a backdrop for exploring themes of happiness, friendship, and the search for joy. While the Bergens start as the antagonists, their journey towards understanding that happiness is an internal state resonates with universal themes of self-discovery and the importance of community—concepts that are very much in line with the communal spirit of Bergen.

Bergen's True Legacy

Bergen's true legacy lies in its ability to inspire creativity, joy, and a deep appreciation for the arts and nature. The city is the birthplace of famous composer Edvard Grieg, whose music continues to captivate audiences worldwide. It's a city that celebrates its maritime history, embraces the arts through festivals and events, and is surrounded by some of Norway's most breathtaking natural landscapes. This rich cultural tapestry and the city's natural beauty are sources of genuine happiness and pride for Bergenites, embodying the true spirit of the city.

Small troll