Black Sheep (1996) [Blu-ray]

Genre(s): Comedy
Paramount || PG13 - 86 minutes - $29.99 || May 12, 2009
Reviewer: Tyler Thomas || Posted On: 2009-05-28

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.:: F I L M ::.
The Film

.: F E A T U R E S :.

Special Features

.:: V I D E O ::.

.:: A U D I O ::.

B L U - R A Y

Blu-ray Exclusives

.:: O V E R A L L ::.
Director: Penelope Spheeris
Writer(s): Fred Wolf (written by)
Cast: Chris Farley, David Spade, Tim Matheson

Theatrical Release Date: February 2, 1996

Supplemental Material:

Technical Information:
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Widescreen (2.35)
  • English (Dolby TrueHD 5.0), French (Dolby Surround 2.0), Spanish (Dolby Surround 2.0)
  • Subtitles: English, English SDH, French, Spanish, Portuguese

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.::THE FILM::.

Iíve had a few conversations recently with another reviewer on this site who claims that I hate all movies made before the year 2000. Allow me to clarify, I donít have the movies made before 2000, itís just that odds are Iíve never actually heard of them. Black Sheep is one of those movies that probably should have stayed in the past and didnít deserve a release on Blu-ray, for numerous reasons which youíll see when you scroll down. Mike Donnelly (Chris Farley) is one of those people we all knew in school. Heís a troubled kid who tries to make due and push his luck by tempting fate again and again. Try as he might, he always manages to screw something up majorly and hurt others in the process, mostly by embarrassing them for being related to him. Take for instance his brother Al (Tim Matheson) who is running for Washington State governor. Mike is trying to get his campaign in the right direction for his brother, but screws it up on the campaign trail by driving the vehicle with a big Al head on the side of it and nearly causes a huge accident. I say ďnearlyĒ because he demolishes part of the vehicle and screws up the side of the head.

This and other events worry Al that his run for the governor may be plagued by constant misfires from his lackey brother, so Steve (David Spade) volunteers to help Al and Mike out by babysitting the younger brother for a while. Steve and Mike arenít the best of friends, and Mike is unaware that Steve is only there to babysit him for the time being to keep him out of trouble. Mike is let go from his job at the YMCA but thatís not where the bad news begins for him. Well, it sort of is, since he was fired for drinking with teens even though he was trying to teach them not to drink because a photographer caught him in the act.

Mike goes to his past job to clear out his desk and is walking out when he spots two guys lighting some matches near the entrance. Mike asks them nicely to stop but the goons could care less and throw the match down and his old work starts going up in flames. The same cameraman from before that caught him with the teens is there and snaps more pictures of Mike trying to put out the fire, although the pictures make it appear that Mike set the fire and not the goons. Obviously it was the opposing candidate running against Al who setup Mike this entire time, but you donít know that yet but you should probably think that.

Steve and Mike are now on the run and head off to the cabin. Before that though, Steveís car gets hijacked by some random straggler named Drake (Gary Busey) who I assume is some retired army guy who can kill you at a momentís notice. Heís also crazy, but since this is 1996 Gary Busey and not 2009 Busey, I have to assume he was competent when this movie was made, I could be wrong. The two go to the cabin and try to live there, but Mike canít sit there without causing tons of trouble and blowing the roof off of the cabin. They also run into Drake several times throughout their adventures in the woods, and learn that yes he really is that creepy of a guy in the end but he has a heart of gold. Can Steve and Mike help Al win the candidacy for governor? Will Mike get exonerated for the crime he didnít commit? Is this movie even funny thirteen years later?

Watching this movie was like getting my teeth pulled: that wasnít funny nor was it enjoying. The only positive part of this movie was the short runtime to be honest. The jokes are so old, predictable, and outdated that this isnít relevant anymore. Iím all for studioís putting out catalog titles, but this is just one that should have stayed in the vault. I gave half a star for each time I laughed during this movie. There was one somewhat funny joke that got a chuckle.


No features included.


For a film based before 2000 and containing zero special effects, this one doesnít look that bad. Colors are however a bit saturated and the palette isnít the best, although considering what it used to look like this is a strict improvement. Contrast levels are decent, but some of the night time scenes like the ones at the cabin donít look the best nor how they should. Flesh tones are also slightly weaker, but other than that there isnít anything really wrong with this picture per say. Itís only a little above average. I am pleasantly noting though it is an upgrade for those with the DVD cut only.

The audio side of things is strange. When I popped it in to check the audio settings, it only has a 5.0 Dolby TrueHD track, not a 5.1. While I donít think that the 5.1 track would have helped any, this is a strictly based comedy audio film and doesnít really ever get going before hitting a brick wall. Levels are inconsistent and surround use is rarely used even though there are multiple scenes where I think it should have been. The opening scene sounds awful, and it doesnít get much better from there. Time has not been kind to this sheep.


Skip this. Sure the video is an upgrade, but a 5.0 audio track and completely absent of any special features plus a fairly high list price makes this one not even worth glancing at. Iím sure there are Farley fans out there who will buy this regardless of my review, but I urge you not to. Why pay money for something with such terrible audio, features, and an outdated movie? Keep your DVD guys this is one sheep not to sheer.