Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale (2010)



Critic Consensus: Rare Exports is an unexpectedly delightful crossbreed of deadpan comedy and Christmas horror.

Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale Videos

Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale Photos

Movie Info

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. RARE EXPORTS: A CHRISTMAS TALE is a re-imagining of the most classic of all childhood fantasies, and is a darkly comic gem soon to be required perennial holiday viewing. -- (C) Oscilloscope
R (for some nudity and language)
Action & Adventure , Art House & International , Comedy , Drama , Mystery & Suspense , Science Fiction & Fantasy
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
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Onni Tommila
as Pietari
Rauno Juvonen
as Piiparinen
Risto Salmi
as Sheriff
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News & Interviews for Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale

Critic Reviews for Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale

All Critics (96) | Top Critics (21)

The flaws of Rare Export offer an important reminder that looking good on YouTube does not provide qualifications for a bigger screen.

Full Review… | December 14, 2014
Top Critic

Rare Exports also twists the season's staples with a morbidly merry, tongue-in-cheek sense of humor.

Full Review… | December 14, 2014
Top Critic

For anyone who can look a little askance at the monster that contemporary Christmas has become, this artfully made Finnish tale is -- I kid you not -- a real treat.

Full Review… | December 9, 2013
Washington Post
Top Critic

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

Full Review… | January 5, 2011
Top Critic

Santa shows his dark side in this wildly idiosyncratic horror flick from Finnish writer-director Jalmari Helander.

Full Review… | January 5, 2011
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

"Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale" is a rather brilliant lump of coal for your stocking hung by the fireside with care.

Full Review… | December 23, 2010
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale


This Finnish Christmas tale looks better than most other films from Europe. Arthouse lovers could complain that it got Hollywoodized too much, but the wonderfully wacky story of "the original" Santa tale should please everyone with a sense for unusual horror. The mix of traditional folklore, family story and monster film just works really great together. Especially the ending is so clever you can't help but hope this is a true story.

Jens S.
Jens S.

Super Reviewer


Interesting movie. Rather strange, if you ask me. I'm not sure I get why so many people seemed to love it. This was an unanimated Tim Burton kind of Christmas movie. My biggest disappointment with the film is what we don't get to see. I didn't understand why we got to see a bunch of less than adorable naked elderly elves, but we couldn't get a single shot of Santa? It was also confusing that the first hour of the story is for older kids or adults, and then once the young boy starts calling the shots, it's reverses back to a kid's film. Not much magical, or mystical, about this particular fairytale. Dark, but weird...

Cynthia S.
Cynthia S.

Super Reviewer

Cast: Per Christian Ellefsen, Peeter Jakobi, Tommi Korpela, Jorma Tommila, Jonathan Hutchings, Onni Tommila, Risto Salmi, Rauno Juvonen, Ilmari Järvenpää Director: Jalmari Helander Summary: In the frozen beauty of Finland, local reindeer herders race against the clock to capture an ancient evil: Santa Claus. A single dad and his son are caught up in the chaos as scientists dig for artifacts. What they find endangers the entire village. My Thoughts: "I really liked the concept of this movie. I thought it was a brilliant idea... Lets make Santa a child murdering freak of nature and have old naked men as the elves. Crazy right?! I wouldn't call the movie scary, even if I think kids would freak out, but considering the elves (as I mentioned above, they are old naked men), I'm pretty sure no parent is going to allow their young ones to watch this.. Well unless they are a bit twisted. It's a rare dark Christmas treat. Someone previously wrote that it felt like an 80's film, and I couldn't agree more. Which is probably why I enjoyed it so much. Hope more see it. Enjoy!"


Super Reviewer

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