A gory, comedy horror about mutated sheep set in New Zealand? Oh, yes please!
Black Sheep would have had to work very hard to fail with a premise exciting & fun enough to make it desired watching.
The movie begins at the Oldfield family farm where young Henry is making his father proud of his sheep farming abilities much to the annoyance of his older brother, Angus.
Jealous, Angus decides to play a prank on Henry by killing & gutting his pet sheep then wearing the bloodied corpse. Yeah…I thought that might have been a bit much too. To make things even worse though, the pair find out shortly afterwards that their father has just been killed in an accident.
15 years later & Henry is all grown up, currently freaking out in the back of a cab while surrounded by lots of sheep. You see, the prank & death of his father was a bit much for Henry & he now suffers from a pretty intense phobia of sheep. It would be funny if it wasn’t so debilitating for a boy who grew up on a farm. The actor, Nathan Meister, does an absolute stand-up job of portraying that fear.
Henry has only returned to the farm to sell his share of it to his brother Angus, who is now a fairly successful business man looking to advance farming techniques. He has been secretly carrying out genetic experiments with the aim to breed the perfect sheep. However it hasn’t been going well & the odd blood-thirsty mutant has arisen out of the pack.
A pair of environmental activists, Grant & Experience attempt to expose Angus’s experiments but accidently release one of these mutant lambs. Trying to escape the pair are separated where Grant is then bitten & infected by the mutant.
It then finds a field full of sheep & sets about infecting them. Think 28 Days/Weeks Later…the virus turns the host into a blood-thirsty carnivore that will kill anything that isn’t infected.
Henry, a city boy who has a phobia of sheep, Experience, a hippy who thinks it’s all in the auroras & Tucker, an old farm friend have to team together to survive the blood-thirsty sheep all while unaware that the infection has a different effect on humans!
Black Sheep is a lot of fun; it’s entertainingly gory with a silliness that never turns into parody even with jokes about shagging sheep. It’s a well acted movie & that New Zealand cheeriness is played up to make most characters really likable regardless of their alignment.
As the bad guy, Angus is hardly a unique character. He is a bit clueless about the negative effects of his experiments & we’ve seen his disbelieving, uncaring in the face of business style far too many times before.
The real stars of the show are the sheep…and the effects, a lack of CGI really amps up the gore. The use of real sheep mixed with the uber-violent up close monsters really makes them believable threats. Sheep have never been this scary!
A tongue in cheek romp through the New Zealand country side all while being chased by blood thirsty & mutant sheep!
The Final Score - 7/10
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