Friday, December 9, 2011

31 Days of Xmas: Rare Exports

2010, Jalmari Helander

So, you have seen these Rare Exports video shorts, right?  This one and this one?  If not, give a few moments for them and then be tremendously amused that they gave the idea a feature film.  Yep, the hunting down and capture of a "father christmas" was made into a full length movie.  And if this doesn't qualify for being an Xmas movie, I don't know what does.

So, the premise of the movie is that some Evil Americans are digging in a very unnatural mountain in northern Lapland, seeking something ancient buried below.  I am pretty sure the mountain is a very real one but it does look incredibly manmade.  What they end up releasing is the source of modern Santa Claus, or at least the hundred or so, thousands of years old, naked old men that are purported to assist Old Saint Nick. Our group of heroes, seasonal reindeer hunters, realize the danger of these creatures, as well as the incredible danger of their 20' leader, and make to capture them all; and to make a profit from it.

You know about Crampus, right?  Google it.  When I was a kid, we had a few stories of Black Peter, Santa's European helper who captured kids in his sooty old sack and punished them.  I was from a coal mining town so that mineral wasn't really a punishment, was it? Anywayz, apparently Crampus is the source of him, a nasty looking GWAR (again, google it) like monster that not only punishes kids but eats them. They actually have Crampus parades, like we have Santa Claus parades, only not as many crappy floats.  So, in the movie, I am pretty sure the nasty 20' creature frozen in the ice is an original Crampus.  Unfortunately, we never really see it get fully released before the Laplander reindeer hunters blow it to bits.  Still, given my love of origin stories and mythos, even twisted, creepy versions, this movie was a heck of a lot of fun.