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FilmStubs: Rare Exports (2010)

In the depths of the Korvatunturi mountains, 486 meters deep, lies the closest ever guarded secret of Christmas. The time has come to dig it up. This Christmas everyone will believe in Santa Claus.
(R, 84 min.)


Wednesday, December 14, 2022

7:00 PM

The FilmStubs series is Free and made possible by a grant from Friends of the Library.
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It's the eve of Christmas in northern Finland, and an 'archeological' dig has just unearthed the real Santa Claus. But this particular Santa isn’t the one you want coming to town. When the local children begin mysteriously disappearing, young Pietari and his father Rauno, a reindeer hunter by trade, capture the mythological being and attempt to sell Santa to the misguided leader of the multinational corporation sponsoring the dig. Santa's elves, however, will stop at nothing to free their fearless leader from captivity. What ensues is a wildly humorous nightmare – a fantastically bizarre polemic on modern day morality. [Oscilloscope Laboratories]

Starring: Starring: Jorma Tommila, Onni Tommila, Peeter Jakobi
Director: Jalmari Helander
Languages: Languages: English, Finnish
Genre(s): Action, Fantasy, Comedy

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"It's dark fun, in the spirit of 'Gremlins.'"

— Walter Addiego, San Francisco Chronicle

"A] deliciously loopy oddball of a film."

— Jim Schembri, The Age (Australia)

"A taut, gorgeously filmed and enjoyably wicked cinematic treat."

— Jennie Punter, The Globe and Mail (Toronto)

"Conceived with winking humor and a terrific visual style, the pic is a rare treat."

— Jay Weissberg, Variety

"It's likely the best anti-Christmas Christmas movie since 'Bad Santa.'"

— Mark Olsen, Village Voice

"A darkly comic throwback to the kiddie horror pics of the '80s, cheeky and just a bit grotesque."

— Jen Yamato,

"This is a movie that had me giggling and gasping aloud, its sights and sounds full of an inspiration and a wit I truly adored."

— Sara Michelle Fetters,

"A rather brilliant lump of coal for your stocking hung by the fireside with care. How else to explain an R-rated Santa Claus origin story crossed with 'The Thing'?"

— Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times

"A fiendishly entertaining Christmas yarn rooted in Northern European legend and lore, complete with a not-so-jolly old St. Nick informed more by the Brothers Grimm than Norman Rockwell."

— Michael Rechtshaffen, The Hollywood Reporter

"What unfolds is a dark comic thriller and action-hero send-up, a strange alloy of daredevil helicopter maneuvers and night of the living elves. Captured in atmospheric widescreen camerawork, the end-of-the-world frozen landscape (actually Norway) is spectacular and spooky."

— Sheri Linden, Los Angeles Times