Santa Claus Is a Stinker

Santa Claus Is a Stinker
Directed by Jean-Marie Poiré
Starring Anémone
Josiane Balasko
Marie-Anne Chazel
Christian Clavier
Gérard Jugnot
Thierry Lhermitte
Bruno Moynot
Release dates
  • 25 August 1982 (1982-08-25)
Running time
87 minutes
Country France
Language French
Box office $10.3 million[1]

Santa Claus Is a Stinker or Le père Noël est une ordure is a cult French comedy play created in 1979 by the troupe Le Splendid and turned into a film directed by Jean-Marie Poiré in 1982.[2]


Pierre a stuffy, self-righteous volunteer at a telephone helpline for depressed people and his well-meaning but naïve co-worker Thérèse, are stuck with the Christmas Eve shift in the Paris office, much to their displeasure.

The building's lift is malfunctioning, and they receive visits from unwanted callers: Katia, a depressed transvestite who tries to hit on Pierre, M. Preskovic who lives in the same building and always turns up unexepectedly to offer them various unappetizing pastries and Josette, a heavily pregnant woman on the run from her violent fiancé Félix. Félix is working as a Santa Claus during the season and turns up on her trail in costume and brandishing a gun. Félix and Josette, a caricature trailer trash couple, end up struggling over the gun and accidentally shooting dead the lift repairman, whom they then butcher and feed to zoo animals.

English (US) remake of the film

In 1994 the basic plot was used by writer/director Nora Ephron to develop the US film Mixed Nuts.[3]



  1. "Le père noel est une ordure (1982)". JP's Box-Office. Retrieved 12 August 1982. Check date values in: |access-date= (help)
  2. "Le Père Noël est une ordure". Turner Classic Movies. Retrieved May 22, 2016.
  3. "Mixed Nuts". Turner Classic Movies. Retrieved May 22, 2016.
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