Shaun the Sheep: Farmageddon

There are certain characters you wouldn’t dream of sending into space (Sister Mary Clarence, James Bond) and others for whom it makes a strange kind of sense. It worked for Jason Voorhees and I’m still holding out hope for Conan the Star Destroyer. Now it’s Shaun the Sheep’s turn to boldly go where no lamb has gone before.

Close Encounters of the Herd Kind

Where its pleasing predecessor defied explanation, this (blea)E.T.-style story of an alien crash landing on Mossy Bottom Farm is an easier sell as a sci-fi parody. The sheepquel’s cineliteracy rivals The Curse of the Were-Rabbit, counting everything from 2001 to Galaxy Quest among its flock of references.

That all this is done without any dialogue is doubly impressive, hitting the mute button on the cute mutton without sacrificing storytelling or comedy. As in the last film this heightens the movie’s international potential while feeling distinctly British, based as it is around farms, chips and rip-off rural attractions.

The thumb marks may be gone but Aardman’s care and attention to detail are imprinted on every frame, with countless gags grazing in the background. Only the bad pop music threatens this out-of-this-woold adventure, but the perfect blend of slapstick and satire ensure fun for all the farmily.

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