The list of great, scary, funny Christmas horror movies that aren’t slasher flicks is pretty small. There’s Gremlins, and there’s almost nothing else. If someone’s got more names for the list, I’m drawing a blank. Die Hard? Action, not horror. Nightmare Before Christmas? That’s Halloween, folks. But now, we’ve got Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale. It made limited release right before the holidays – and is seeing as wide an audience as it’s bound to get – so now’s your chance to get the snowballs scared out of you.
Set in Finland during the days leading up to Christmas, reindeer hunter Rauno and his 7-year old son Pietari discover all of the local reindeers have been butchered by something vicious, something not human that Pietari is sure was excavated by the visiting foreigners and their top-secret dig. Things get more eerie as Christmas nears and local children go missing. In their places, wicker dummies lie under the covers. Who’s stealing the children, and what’s leaving naked footprints in the snow? I’m not going to give anything away, but this might be my favorite movie of the past year.
Imagine a brand new Phantasm, or an Indiana Jones movie with the religious relic being the mythological Santa. The mythological, pagan, demon-goat Santa. Think of the wonder of the elves and their tools, turning to horror as their true natures become revealed. Think of 200 naked old men, running through the snow, with their long hoary beards flying behind them. This movie is amazing. See it if it’s playing anywhere near you.