October 2, 2008

Black Sheep (2007)

This was the most amusing animal based horror-comedy that I've seen since "Revenge of Billy the Kid" (1991).

It was silly when it needed to be silly and gory where it needed to be gory. It wasn't laugh out loud funny at any point nor was it even the slightest bit scary, but it was filmed beautifully and acted perfectly. Even the orchestral background music worked. It's a very classy product which pretends to be just another B movie.

I don't usually even like horror-comedies, but since the humour in this was so gentle, it wasn't ruined by the over-the-top comedy excesses of something like the awful "Shaun of the Dead".

Everyone will undoubtedly compare "Black Sheep" to Simon Pegg's efforts although it is really better to see this as in the same vein as old school Peter Jackson. I suppose that is no big surprise since not only is it a New Zealand film but the effects were also created by Peter Jackson's Weta workshop.

Anyway, the story was just as ridiculous as you would imagine any film about zombie sheep to be. There were even a few mutating were-sheep thrown in as well due to the nature of the DNA altering serum which caused all the trouble to begin with. I'm sure there was supposed to be some comment there about genetic research and New Zealand sheep farming, but this was hardly hardcore political satire. Every possible sheep joke was used anyway even the baaaad ones.

The action sequences were all really well done. The gore was nice and visceral with lots of blood and guts everywhere. The sound of stampeding sheep in the distance created a nice bit of atmosphere from time to time although there wasn't really any tension or suspense to speak of.

I couldn't really find any other fault with it except that sometimes the sheep looked a bit too fake so I'm giving it 8 out of 10.

It did exactly what it set out to do, and I found it all very entertaining.

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