comedy, horror, movie, movie review, sci-fi

Flashback Review: May 4th, 2014 Movie – Black Sheep (2006)

black sheep 2006

Ahh, the memories that this movie inspire. See, my friend Jason had woken up early one morning and, unable to go back to sleep, headed downstairs in his house to watch a movie. He saw that Black Sheep (1996) was on and decided to watch that but instead of the Chris Farley/David Spade movie that was listed in the guide, he discovered that it was this movie. Since it was already half over, he decided to watch it, then proceeded to tell me, as he knew my love of B-movies, all about the parts that he saw. Well, a few weeks later, I happened to find this movie, Black Sheep (2006) at MovieStop and decided to pick it up, then proceeded to tell him via Facebook what all happened at the beginning of the movie. This exchange between the two of us led to the formation of a campy movie night group among my friends so I can show them all sorts of various B-movies and it all started because of this particular movie.

The plot: In New Zealand, young Henry Oldfield is tending to his family’s sheep with his father and his best friend, Tucker. Meanwhile, Henry’s older brother Angus, whose leg is injured, is jealous of Henry, takes Henry’s pet lamb and kills it. Henry returns to the house and after calling out to the caretaker, Mrs. Mac, he goes looking for his sheep. When he hears something coming from the barn, he heads inside to look for it only to have Angus jump out, wearing his sheep’s skinned carcass, and scares Henry but Angus stop when Mrs. Mac yells out that their father was in an accident. 15 years later, Henry, now deathly afraid of sheep, is returning to the family farm, on the advice of his therapist, to sell of his share to his brother Angus, as well as deal with issues he has with Angus, his father’s death, and his fears. Meanwhile, two activists, Experience and Grant, sneak onto Angus’ farm just as Angus flies in on his plane, as he is prepping for a demonstration he is hosting. Experience and Grant see a woman, Dr. Rush, and some men loading a cage onto a truck and Grant decides to head down and steal some bio-waste marked for disposal, as evidence of Dr. Rush and Angus’ illegal experiments. As Dr. Rush’s men chase after Grant, he gets separated from Experience as she hides from the men herself. As he is running, Grant ends up tripping and breaking the container, and the fetal sheep that was inside crawls on him and bites him in the ear. Grant manages to get the fetus off of him and as he reacts in pain from the bite, the fetal sheep crawls off and ends up biting a regular sheep. Meanwhile, Angus writes Henry a check for his share of the farm and Henry reluctantly takes it but argues with Angus about how he is running things. As Henry speaks with Mrs. Mac, Tucker enters the house and decides to take Henry out for a ride around the farm before he leaves. As they are driving, they come across a sheep that doesn’t want to move from the road and they get out, with Tucker going to examine the sheep and noticing the bite on it’s nose. Suddenly, Experience appears, grabbing the rifle from Tucker’s truck, and forces them to help her look for Grant but when Tucker tells her the safety is on, he is able to get the gun away from her. As they head back to the truck, Experience apologizes but says she is there to get proof of Angus’ illegal experiments when Tucker notices smoke coming from a nearby farm house. The three head over there and as they start searching the house, a sheep enters the hallway and chases them into the bedroom. Inside, they find the mutilated body of the farmer and as the sheep starts to break through the door, Tucker shoots it but it doesn’t die right away, so he shoots it again in the head. Experience notices more sheep outside and as Tucker makes his way out to start the truck, Experience tries to help Henry overcome his fears enough to get in the truck. As the eventually get in the back, a sheep manages to get in the front with Tucker as he drives off and he works on preventing it from biting him but it ends up biting him through his boot. Tucker manages to climb out the window and into the back, then tells the others to jump to avoid going over the cliff they are approaching. Back at the farm, Dr. Rush’s men return, having found no sign of Grant, and Dr. Rush decides they should get rid of the rest of the waste and relocate the lab but when one of her men goes to dispose of the waste, he is killed by some infected sheep. Meanwhile, Angus notices Henry’s taxi is still there and goes looking for him when he runs into Grant, who is beginning to show some side effects from the bite. As Grant and Angus argue over what Angus is doing, Grant bites him in the hand before running off. In the fields, Tucker’s foot begins bothering him and when he takes off his boot, he discovers his foot has started to turn into a sheep’s hoof. When they see a stampede of sheep approaching them, they quickly head towards the farm and end up entering Dr. Rush’s lab. Inside, they see some more of Rush’s experiments just as Dr. Rush and Angus confront them. Henry is horrified at seeing what Angus is doing and when Dr. Rush uses a sedative on Tucker, Henry and Experience make a run for it. Outside, they see more sheep approaching them and head towards the nearby offal pit and quickly close the gate. Angus approaches them with Tucker’s rifle, with the sheep making no effort to attack him, and as Henry tries to convince Angus to stop what he is doing, he ends up falling into the pit with Experience. Inside, Experience lights a candle to help them see and they try to find a way out, with one of the sheep jumping down and chasing after them but Henry uses the candle to set it on fire. Meanwhile, Angus starts feeling a strange attraction to his genetically created sheep and tells Dr. Rush to stay behind in the lab while he presents the sheep, as he doesn’t want her reputation to take away from the presentation. Henry and Experience manage to find a passage out of the pit and head to a nearby corral to wash off. Hearing the sound of shearing coming from the corral, they head inside and find Grant, who has turned into a giant weresheep. Grant attacks Henry, as he is jealous of his apparent closeness to Experience, and when Experience tries distracting him, Henry grabs her and they manage to make their way through the stalls and escape. Back at the lab, Dr. Rush and her assistant are watching Tucker as he changes before Dr. Rush injects him with the amniotic fluid from another fetus, reversing the change. Dr. Rush then fills another syringe and goes to inject Angus, as she knows he is infected, but both her and her assistant are eaten by sheep. Angus begins his presentation and reveals the genetically created sheep he had made but the sheep starts calling out and all of the infected sheep descend on the demonstration and begin attacking the guests. Angus tries to get away but notices the sheep ignore him and when his genetic sheep follows after him, he takes it into his office to hide. Meanwhile, Henry and Experience see the carnage and before they can be attacked, Mrs. Mac rescues them. They head back to the house only to find Grant inside, who attacks Henry again but Experience uses an acupuncture pin to render him unconscious. Henry goes to Angus’ office to use the phone and finds Angus, minus his pants, inside with the sheep. Henry moves to shoot the sheep but Angus gets in his way and says it’s family, revealing he used his DNA to help create the sheep. The two argue before Henry, hearing Experience and Mrs. Mac saying that the sheep are getting inside, leaves the office. The three head to the balcony, where they see the people that had been attacked turning into weresheep. Experience sees Angus and his sheep leaving and Henry realizes that he is heading for his plane. Mrs. Mac notices that Henry has been bitten and he freaks out at first but then realizes that he has to stop Angus no matter what. He hands Experience Mrs. Mac’s shotgun, telling her to shoot him if he changes, then kisses her goodbye. Using the sheepskin cover from Mrs. Mac’s car seat, Henry attempts to sneak by the sheep and weresheep but when one of the sheep tries to have sex with him, removing his disguise when he gets rid of it, he realizes the sheep are ignoring him as he is infected. At the barn, Angus is preparing to fly off with his sheep when he begins changing into a weresheep. When Henry enters the barn, he is attacked by Angus and the two begin fighting but Henry is able to use the returning sheep dog to keep Angus at bay, where he ends up being struck by his plane’s propeller. Henry thinks Angus is dead but as he turns away, Angus gets back up and moves to attack him. Suddenly, Tucker rides up on an ATV and, using some tools from the lab to fashion a injection system, cures both Angus and Henry. Tucker and Henry, along with Experience, gather all of the infected sheep into the barn and try to figure out what to do with them when Angus staggers towards the flock, wishing to be infected again but the sheep attack and kill him instead. Noting the flatulence being emitted from the sheep, Henry uses Experience’s lighter to ignite their farts, causing the barn and sheep to explode. The next day, Tucker and Henry manage to cure Grant and all of the other people that had turned into weresheep, who are all huddling in the corral still in shock over what happened, while Experience tries to convince them to give organic farming a try. Meanwhile, the sheep dog is on a hill staring at them when it suddenly begins bleeting like a sheep.

Black Sheep (2006) met with positive reviews from the critics, holding a 71% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. The critical consensus on the site is, “With an outrageous premise played completely straight, Black Sheep is a violent, grotesque, and very funny movie that takes B-movie lunacy to a delirious extreme.” The scene with the sheep driving the Land Rover took several days to film. The scene with the Land Rover going over the cliff was done in one take. The movie had a limited release in the U.S. but ended up making $4.9 million worldwide at the box office.

This movie is surprisingly funny, while possessing a couple of good gore scenes to make it a compelling horror/comedy. The acting was pretty good, with Nathan Meister (Henry), Danielle Mason (Experience), and Tammy Davis (Tucker) doing good jobs in their roles. The plot was pretty good, with a splattering of the usual sheep jokes you would expect to see in here. The bit where Henry enters Angus’ office to find him and the sheep together about had me do a spit take the first time I saw it because I couldn’t believe they would have been that blatant with it, while the end scene with Angus getting killed added bit of irony to the situation. The horror aspects were pretty good, with the idea of killer sheep kind of being a throwback to movies like Night Of The Lepus in a way. However, the addition of the weresheep added a bit of uniqueness to the situation that was a nice change of pace but I wish they had done a little more with them. A fun horror/comedy that is definitely worth watching if you get the chance.

Rating: 4 out of 5

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