Christmas is nearly upon us and MMC! wanted to wish everyone a happy holidays with this pair of short films by Jalmari Helander. These wonderful shorts take the “Murder Santa” trope into weird, fantastical places. For those looking for more, we recommend Helander’s 2010 feature elaboration, Rare Exports.
Merry merry, happy happy, everyone!
The Criterion Collection, a continuing series of important classic and contemporary films present The White Reindeer.
Shot in the Arctic Circle’s snowy expanses, Erik Blomberg’s The White Reindeer is a marvel of film fantasy. Pirita, played by the director’s wife, Mirjami Kuosmanen, is a bewitched young woman wed to an often-absent reindeer herder. Longing for affection, she carries out a sacrifice to empower a local shaman’s love potion and becomes cursed, transforming into a white reindeer by night and drinking the blood of local hunters. Based on an old Lapp saga, The White Reindeer blends documentary travelogue with avant-garde experimentation and produces an art house horror film without compare, winning the Golden Globe for Best Foreign Language Film and granted the prize for Best Fairy Tale Film at the Cannes Film Festival by Jean Cocteau’s presiding jury.
- New high-definition digital transfer of the film featuring 7 minutes of material not included in previously restored versions, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray edition
- Seven short films by Erik Blomberg: With the Reindeer (1947), From the Lemmenjoki River (1948), Gold and Sand (1948), Thirty Years of Work for the Finnish People (1948), Open the Way for Our Flags (1949), Before the Opening Night (1949), and The Beauty Pageant 1955 II (1955)
- Kodin värit, Blomberg’s theatrically released commercial for the Tikkurila paint company
- Photo Gallery
- PLUS: A booklet featuring a new essay by film scholar Henry Bacon