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The Flight Before Christmas (2008)

Niko - lentäjän poika (original title)
A young reindeer who suffers from vertigo learns to overcome his fear, takes flying lessons from a clumsy flying squirrel and heads to the North pole to save a troubled Santa and his fleet of flying reindeer.
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Olli Jantunen Olli Jantunen ... Niko (voice)
Hannu-Pekka Björkman Hannu-Pekka Björkman ... Julius (voice)
Vuokko Hovatta Vuokko Hovatta ... Wilma (voice)
Vesa Vierikko Vesa Vierikko ... Musta Susi (voice)
Jussi Lampi Jussi Lampi ... Räyskä (voice)
Risto Kaskilahti Risto Kaskilahti ... Rimppa / Uljas (voice)
Minttu Mustakallio Minttu Mustakallio ... Essie (voice)
Juha Veijonen Juha Veijonen ... Raavas (voice)
Puntti Valtonen Puntti Valtonen ... Hirvas (voice)
Elina Knihtilä Elina Knihtilä ... Oona (voice)
Juulia Rönkkö Juulia Rönkkö ... Saaga (voice)
Tommi Korpela ... Porolauman johtaja (voice)
Aarre Karén Aarre Karén ... Isoisä (voice)
Arttu Hämäläinen Arttu Hämäläinen ... Poropoika 1 (voice)
Ilmari Huhtala Ilmari Huhtala ... Poropoika 2 (voice)
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Storyline

A reindeer boy named Niko dreams about flying like his father, whom he has never met. Despite constant mocking from others, he sneaks out of his home valley to take flying lessons from Julius, a flying squirrel. Written by jcsmarchesi

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

An all-new holiday movie about Santa and his little helpers!


Certificate:

G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Finland | Denmark | Germany | Ireland

Language:

English | Finnish

Release Date:

10 October 2008 (Finland) See more »

Also Known As:

The Flight Before Christmas See more »

Filming Locations:

Finland

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Box Office

Budget:

EUR6,100,000 (estimated)

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$21,897,141
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This is the most widely distributed Finnish film. Its rights have been sold to over a 100 countries. See more »

Goofs

When Niko and Saga warn the other reindeer that wolves are coming, Niko's grandpa comes in and asks "Are you sure they didn't follow you?" At that moment, his right horn can be seen passing through the leader's horn geometry. See more »

Quotes

Niko: You didn't want me to come here.
Julius: Of course i did.
Niko: You didn't want me to find dad.
Julius: Niko...
Niko: You didn't want me to fly.
Julius: Lower your voice!
Wilma: [worried] Guys...
Niko: [gets upset] You ruined everything!
Julius: I forbid you to...
Niko: [interrupting] You can't forbid me anything! You're not my dad!
See more »

Crazy Credits

At the end of the credits: 21.858 liters of beer were consumed during the making of this movie! See more »

Alternate Versions

Alternate version spoken in Danish. See more »


Soundtracks

Menneet menneitä on
Written by Kieran McEvoy
Finnish lyrics by Annamari Metsävainio
Performed by Vuokko Hovatta
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Effortlessly enjoyable
23 September 2013 | by p-stepienSee all my reviews

Niko is a brash young reindeer living somewhere in the Finnish highlands of Lapland, brought up by his single mother and a flying squirrel called Julius. Niko's real father is said to be a member of the famed fleet of flying reindeer in Santa's sleigh, thus infusing the young calf with a dream to sail through the skies. His attempts to run the wind end with calamity, as he leads a pack of wolves onto the trail of his herd, thus forcing them to evacuate their haven - a valley hidden between the mountains and trees. Hence fraught with self-resentment Niko decides to leave heading North to join his father as part of Santa's sleigh crew. Along the way he will learn the hard truths of life...

Thoroughly engaging, especially for my 5-year old, who was jumping in anticipation, joy and filtering through all the more tense moments, while at times incapable to hold back the emotions. In some ways a far cry from American fare, which shies away from more iffy subject matter (such as Nico's true father turning out to be a narcissistic, high-flying womaniser). Somehow American viewers tend to turn a blind eye at on-screen violence in children's movies, but a slight dosage of reality with blood-hungry wolves and the dissonance between truth and childhood imaginations, suddenly bring about a blow-back. "Niko" definitely treads on dangerous ground, making the movie not as family friendly as expected, given the Santa Claus plot line and the congestion of heavy concepts for youth, but all in all the mix was surprisingly workable with some very nice animation, superb character formation and a sweet tear-jerking resolve that will warm the coldest adult heart.


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