Black Sheep

3 out of 5 stars
WOOLLY BULLY An unfortunate soul becomes a hungry lamb's lunch.
WOOLLY BULLY An unfortunate soul becomes a hungry lamb’s lunch.

Time Out says

3 out of 5 stars

Beware the green, grassy fields of New Zealand’s countryside, for despite their serene exteriors, there lurk...killer sheep? Hey, they aren’t just any murderous mutton; these violent lambs are the result of genetic experiments funded by a corporate suit (Feeney) who wants to make the “perfect” wool-givers. Then an animal activist accidentally lets one of the li’l buggers loose, the mutant beastie starts infecting his baa-baa brethren and bam! Before you know it, the whole ranch is overrun with homicidal livestock. And once the human population starts getting bitten—watch out, Little Bo Peep!

Lifting a page from fellow Kiwi Peter Jackson’s pre--Heavenly Creatures playbook, director Jonathan King cooks up a ready-made midnight movie, equal parts goofiness and gore. Once the owner’s sheep-phobic brother (Meister) and a PETA hippie named Experience (Mason) start fighting back against the homicidal Ovis aries, all manner of Grand Guignol is staged: Limbs are chewed down to bloody nubs, internal organs serve as yummy treats and shotgun shells make mincemeat out of a monstrosity’s skull. Only a 12-year-old boy would view this collection of squishy grotesqueries and squirting arteries as perfect Friday-night entertainment, but only a stonefaced killjoy wouldn’t giggle a little at the sheer ridiculousness of King turning so many cute, furry friends into flesh-eating fiends. (Opens Fri; Landmark Sunshine.) — David Fear



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