Black Sheep
Black Sheep

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Certificate: 12A | Released: 1996 | Duration: 1 hr 23 mins | Director: Penelope Spheeris | Studio: Paramount Home Entertainment | Genres: Comedy

Chris Farley stars as Mike Donnelly, the doltish younger brother of a gubernatorial candidate (Tim Matheson). Mike can't seem to stay out of trouble, thus potentially endangering his brother's chance at winning the election, so campaign aide Steve Dodds (David Spade) is assigned to chaperone him until the election is over. Not realizing that he is biting off more than he can chew, Steve takes Mike to the wilderness of Washington state, where the two men are ill-equipped to deal with the difficulties that nature throws thei ... (Full plot summary below)

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Full Plot Details

Chris Farley stars as Mike Donnelly, the doltish younger brother of a gubernatorial candidate (Tim Matheson). Mike can't seem to stay out of trouble, thus potentially endangering his brother's chance at winning the election, so campaign aide Steve Dodds (David Spade) is assigned to chaperone him until the election is over. Not realizing that he is biting off more than he can chew, Steve takes Mike to the wilderness of Washington state, where the two men are ill-equipped to deal with the difficulties that nature throws their way. Penelope Spheeris (WAYNE'S WORLD) directs this slapstick comedy, which reunites the successful team from 1995's TOMMY BOY.

This blood-soaked horror comedy is the story of Henry Oldfield (Nathan Meister), a New Zealander with an unfortunate phobia...of sheep. When Henry was a boy, his father was killed in a herding accident on the land, and Henry fled to the big city. Now, years later, he has returned to sell his half of the farm and--at the behest of his therapist--to face his fears. Meanwhile, Henry's sadistic older brother Angus (Peter Feeney) has taken over the family business, and become widely known for his controversial genetic experiments on the animals. When two animal activists release one of Angus's genetically-altered lambs, Henry's trip quickly turns into his worst nightmare, as the lamb's zombie-like bite turns sheep and people into vicious flesh-eaters. Henry joins forces with one of the animal activists (Danielle Mason), and together they try to escape the sheep and find an antidote for the virus. Director Jonathon King cleverly plays on the silliness of the normally docile, dimwitted lamb as terrifying monster, and his shots of the sheep swarming over the hills induce equal parts thrills and laughter. However, the storyline could perhaps have benefited from a bit less action, and a bit more plot, as the suspense and jokes begin to fizzle by the end. The excellent WETA WORKSHOP (known for its work on the LORD OF THE RINGS trilogy) delivers hilariously gory special effects. Faces are eaten off, humans throw their own limbs, and heads explode, culminating in a raucous bloodbath that will likely earn BLACK SHEEP cult status among the EVIL DEAD crowd.

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Movie Reviews

TV Guide - 7.5/10 by Maitland McDonagh Horror buffs in search of a fresh take on the usual grue should embrace it wholeheartedly.
Austin Chronicle - 7.8/10 by Marc Savlov It's smart; it's silly; it's kill me now shear terror.
New York Post - 6.3/10 by Kyle Smith This is a one-joke skit that trots in a straight line, and your enjoyment of it will depend entirely on how many times you need to see gonzo sheep rip out human entrails.
The New York Times - 7.0/10 by A.O. Scott Once you have seen a sheep munching on a bloody human leg, you may think twice about your next leg of lamb. On the other hand maybe you'll be inspired to seek vengeance. To provoke one of these responses -- vegetarianism or a defiant meat eating -- may be the point of this odd, amusing film.
Premiere - 7.5/10 by Eric Alt You'll laugh, you'll groan, you'll never buy wool again.
New York Daily News - 6.3/10 by Elizabeth Weitzman Both the humor and horror are as broad as the side of the Oldfields' barn, but King and the cast are clearly having fun.
Variety - 7.0/10 by Jay Weissberg Endearingly amusing horror pic.
Los Angeles Times - 7.0/10 by Sam Adams The cast, including Tammy Davis as a handyman and Glenis Levestam as a housekeeper with a taste for innards, hits its marks flawlessly, even when the material isn't first-rate. Like "Shaun of the Dead," Black Sheep is at once exhilarating and self-deprecating, knowledgeable without being fannish, clever but not too clever.

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