Saturday, November 17, 2007

In New Zealand, no one can hear you scream

While the other movies we have out from Netflix have been being exchanged rather quickly, I am sorry to admit that Netflix probably made money off of me as I finally got around to watching Black Sheep tonight after Anna passed out from the sheer exhaustion of her birthday party. More on that tomorrow, but for tonight, we're going to talk about psychotic, flesh-hungry New Zealand sheep. Oh, and did I mention were-sheep as well?

I think that my expectations for Black Sheep might have been a titch too high considering what it was that I was going to be watching. I mean, seriously, genetically altered, man eating sheep? In all honesty, though, it was slightly disappointing because it played both for scares AND laughs. I think that so rarely works. However, when it does work, i.e. Shaun of the Dead, it works very well. Unfortunately, the end result is usually something like Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child ("thumbs down! I've been more scared at a Disney movie!") I think Black Sheep probably fell somewhere in between those two extremes, but rest assured, it was more Dream Child than Shaun.

One thing I will say for Black Sheep, though. It decidedly did not skimp on the gore. There was one scene of mass carnage and gore that had even me, seasoned horror film veteran, turning away. It would have done even the best zombie movie proud with its portrayal of sheep eating living humans. Ultimately though, gore does not equal scary - it mostly equals gross. When combined with truly scary elements, it can accentuate the scariness, but I don't think that gore is capable of being scary on its own merits.

The other thing I will say for Black Sheep is that it was probably written by a guy who is completely in touch with his 12 year-old boy. There were sheep fart jokes. I'm even willing to forgive the attempt to combine horror and laughs to let something like that in. Grown men who have a healthy respect for the 12 year-old boy in all of us get a great deal of admiration from me!

So it's a recommendation from me, but keep your expectations low. Not exactly a ringing endorsement, but what can you say? I'll be sticking to zombies, thankyouverymuch. Next up is probably going to be 28 Weeks Later.

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