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I was searching for a movie about Christmas one day and I stumbled upon Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale. I figured it would be an interesting watch.  Sure.

Two boys are watching an excavation on a mountain in Finnland, curiously watching what's going on.  As they are heading home, one of them talks about Santa Claus, while the older kid says Santa is a legend.

The younger kid, Pietari, does some research on Santa, and finds some pretty horrible stories about the legend.  This includes how Santa Claus is someone who "knows when you're naughty" and takes care of the naughty kids.  Sort of takes the jolly out of the whole deal.

Eventually the  men are ready for a reindeer hunt (there are no women in this movie, which I find weird.) They head out to a place where the reindeer congregate so they can get to business, but find very little game.  Nearby they find a group of slaughtered reindeer, and wonder what the hell is going on.

Who slaughtered the reindeer?  The excavation crew?  Wolves?  Or something else?

Pietari's father had dug a wolf trap near their home, and one morning Pietari sees that the trap is sprung, and the they look in.  There's a man in the trap.  They bring him inside the slaughterhouse, wondering who this silent man is.  He looks like what you would think might be Santa Claus, but is a dirty old creepy street urchin looking Santa.

Rare Exports  




 Below: Santa?

They try to find out who he is, but he only reacts to the presence of Pietari.  This is creepy as his reaction at first is to start sniffing like a hungry dog.  Weird.

When a two-way radio starts chirping about coming to pick up Santa, they dress the old man up as Santa Claus and attempt to sell him for $85000 to recoup the losses they have taken from the loss of all of the reindeer meat.  The men still assume the reindeer were killed by the excavation crew.  Not quite true, not by a long shot.

To go any further explaining what's going on would spoil everything.  The movie is low-budget, a bit goofy, and definitely heavy on dead-pan humor with the whole idea of Santa Claus, and the moviemakers take it in a direction you don't expect.  Their solution to the money problem is disturbingly funny.

If you're looking for something new in a horror movie, and don't mind being a bit grossed out, then check Rare Exports out.  The acting is natural (it's not that great.)  The only actor that shows any chops is the Santa they capture, and he's just quiet and creepy.  Enjoy this one after the kids go to sleep, or watch it with them and destroy their belief in a Santa Claus.

This film is subtitled.

Below: Yes, this is a screen from the movie.


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