I'm a sucker for Christmas themed horror films. Seriously. Joe Dante's Gremlins remains one the most viewed films in my personal history (due in part to hundreds of repetitive afternoons in front of the boob tube as a kid). Just this Christmas in fact, I was raiding my grandparent's storage in a feverish hunt to find my long lost Gizmo doll from my childhood. Alas, to no avail (hang in there Giz, I'm determined to recover you one day). Bob Clark's seminal yuletide creep-fest Black Christmas (and template for all slashers films henceforth) remains one of my all time favorite horror films ever.
So it was with great excitement last night that my husband Daniel and I celebrated our anniversary (of having met 4 years ago this week) by, among other things, taking in a screening of the critically lauded, Finnish horror movie Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale down at our city's only theater for art-house films, Cinema Center. The theater doesn't host many genre titles, but I have been lucky enough to catch the likes of Juan Antonio Bayona's The Orphanage, Joon-ho Bong's The Host and Tomas Alfredson's Let The Right One In there. Though ultimately Rare Exports under-qualified to make it onto The October Country's "Best of 2010" list, it certainly will be getting honorable mention. Touching, spooky and possessing a playful sense of humor about itself, it turned out to be memorably chilling night at the cinema. Certainly it will go on to become a seasonal mainstay in many a horror fan's home. It will in this one.
As a love letter of sorts to my cherished husband Daniel (in honor of said anniversary), allow me to say that when I met him, he was merely a horror movie fan, or more accurately, he showed an appreciative if passing interest in the genre. 4 years later he has blossomed into a horror movie connoisseur. Displaying an ever growing vocabulary on it's history and now possessing a notable amount of information on it's directors, stars, writers and the films they have made. He has quickly become my favorite person to settle down and view a scary movie with. He's also developed a rather rabid preoccupation with low budget exploitation sickies, getting me to lower my guard and indulge in the likes of The Nail Gun Massacre, Nekromantik and the Ilsa films to name a few (surpassing even my knowledge of certain obscure b-movie titles). So, here's to another 4 years, I can't think of another person I'd rather share all this ghoulishness with.
Below you will find Jalmari Helander's sensational short films on which he based his 2010 Rare Exports feature film adaptation.
Rare Exports Inc.
Rare Exports: The Official Safety Instructions