Friday, August 7, 2015

Now In US Cinemas: Shaun The Sheep The Movie

American fans of Aardman, the wait is over! For Shaun The Sheep's big screen debut is now playing in the Ewe-S-A, (And Canada, obviously.) The dialogue free stop-motion film has been winning critics over Stateside- much as it did when it opened in it's native UK back in February.

The film sees Shaun and his flock head to the big city in a bid to bring home the farmer and return life to normal. Sadly, early box-office reports (it actually opened on Wednesday) suggest that North American audiences are not exactly flocking to see it, and it's likely to have the smallest opening of any Aardman film to date in the territory.

Does Shaun not have many fans in North America? That's a shame if true, as it seems he's been taken to heart by most of the rest of the world. We'd unreservedly recommend you go and see it as soon as you can, as it's absolutely fantastic. Check out an extract from our review below.

Twenty years after he first appeared in Nick Park's Wallace and Gromit short A Close Shave, Aardman's woolly wonder finally stars in his own feature length adventure. Shaun The Sheep The Movie is actually a big-screen spin-off of Shaun's 2007 TV series but don't worry- you won't need any pre-existing knowledge to enjoy this.

Tired of life on the farm, Shaun comes up with a cunning plan to get a day off. When his scheme accidentally backfires, leaving the Farmer packed off to the big city, it's up to Shaun and his flock to bring him home again. It's a pretty simple set-up, but it's an ideal excuse to put Shaun and co outside their comfort zone and into an adventure big enough to justify the expanded running time. It's a pretty big step up from seven minute episodes to a full movie, but this never feels like it just an extended  TV episode.

Whenever people talks about films or television being "well written", more often than not they're talking about the quality of the dialogue. What people often overlook is the fact that there's a lot more to screenwriting than dialogue. Writing parts of a screenplay without any speech takes an awful lot of skill, but it never gets the same recognition that brilliantly written dialogue gets. Deft use of both script and storyboarding is a key part of animation that it often not given the credit it deserves.

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