Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale is a Christmas horror movie Blu-ray DVD set. Those who want more in horror than slice and dice will very much enjoy this movie from Finland. It is like nothing you have seen before. Buyer beware: is it is not indicated in any remotely clear way on the packaging (legal size red print on a black background) that the movie is in Finnish with English subtitles and the Amazon listing says English language.
Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale is a Stephen King kind of movie: There is a slow build up, it is child centered, and there is local mythology involved.
Pietari is a rather innocent ten-year-old living with his father Rauno in northern Finland. His father is the village butcher. His best friend is the somewhat older Aimo. The village is on the border with Russia and overlooked by a mountain the Russians are taking core samples from. Strange things start happening when the crew starts digging: Pietari finds an old book about a Santa with horns that boils and whips little children and a herd of reindeer is mysteriously slaughtered.
On Christmas Eve Rauno finds a naked old man with a white beard and an American passport in the spiked wolf trap he made. He and his friend Piiparinen, who is dressed up like Santa because he has a job to go to, decide to cut up the body but ….
Meanwhile, someone has been emptying potato sacks and stealing the sacks, radiators have been ripped off walls and taken, and Pietari slowly discovers all the children in the village are gone.
Things slowly start to make sense and the real secret of Christmas is revealed: it’s not pretty.
This foreign film is available as a DVD only but then you miss out on Santa Claus Conquers the Martians (1964) with famous thespian Pia Zadora. The print for this bonus feature is fullscreen and not restored. Other features are two short film prequels, a Making Of, and other such stuff.