Shaun the Sheep Movie is a cautionary tail of how ducking responsibility for familial cohesion results in hog-wild resistance and bullish antics from all parties. It is a story that begs the viewer to consider the catastrophic repercussions he or she faces for dogged apathy towards long-term relationsheeps.
The movie opens with a montage of loving memories of new found allegiance between a farmer and his adoring animals. But as the repetition of life grinds this rural family like herbs between mortar and pestle the bond between farmer and animal begins to disintegrate. When the titular character Shaun attempts to break the downward cycle of indifference he unknowingly pushes his family further apart than ever. He is a gust of wind shooting the pulverized remnants of kinship into the ether. It is up to Shaun to capture the breeze before all hope of reconciliation is lost.
As with most Aardman Animation production, Shaun the Sheep Movie is animated using stop-motion and relies heavily on visually gags. Shaun the Sheep Movie goes so far as to not have one single word of intelligible dialogue. The animals go “Wrr wrr wrr,” the humans go, “Wha wha wha,” and the movie is all the better for it. Without the dependency on words for humor, the filmmakers have gone above and beyond to create nonstop physical gags and visual puns. This is truly a movie that you cannot look away from without missing a joke.
While the story is not incredibly original, the route taken to tell the story is incredibly efficient and stupidly adorable. Baby sheep, homeless dogs, crying animals, hugs, kisses– what else do you need to warm the dead cockles of your heart? Are you really so defeated in life to not receive any warmth from the heart of the film? Even the most gruff humans around would watch Shaun the Sheep Movie and need to sneak an, “awww shucks,” every so often.
Shaun the Sheep Movie is a great movie. While the beginning of this review is mostly in jest the movie really does confront some important adult themes while presenting the message and moral in an easily digestible little pill. If you have children, they’ll love watching the silly animals do silly things. You’ll love watching Shaun the Sheep Movie for the reminder to not take your terrible children for granted.