Director: Jeremy Sims
Writer: Jules Duncan (Screenplay) Grimur Hakonarson (Original Film)
Starring: Sam Neill, Miranda Richardson, Asher Keddie, Michael Caton, Hayley McElhinney, Wayne Blair
Plot: A decades-long feud between two sheep farming brothers comes to a head when disaster strikes their flocks.
Runtime: 1 Hour 55 Minutes
There may be spoilers in the rest of the review
Story: Rams starts as we meet the two brothers and rival sheep farmers Colin (Neill) and Les (Caton) who live next door to each other, but haven’t spoken to each over in nearly 40 years, they both compete with the other farmers in the area, with the two always being the final two in any competitions.
After Les wins the latest competition, Colin discovers the flock could all be contaminated and both flocks will need to be destroyed and the pair will need to follow the government guidelines if they are either going to get back to their passion.
Thoughts on Rams
Characters & Performances – Colin is one of the two rivalling brothers, he will become more open to talking to the rest of the community, he is the one that discovers the disease in the area and makes the hard decision with his flock as he looks to work with the government to clean the area, he approaches the change in a different way to his brother. Sam Neill is great in tis role, he has the comedy skills to make this character seem straight-faced, while not being a parody of the situation. Les is the rival brother that usually wins the awards, he is a recluse that doesn’t want anything to do with anyone in the town, including his brother, he struggles a lot more with the changes the area must make, seeing him turn to alcohol for help. Michael Caton works very well opposite Neill in this role, showing the character that feels like they have nothing and hating the world. Kat is the local vet that must deal with the biggest problems in the area, while trying to learn what caused the problems between the brothers. Miranda Richardson does well with her role, she will bring the more serious side to the story with most of her scenes. When we look into the rest of the cast and characters, we get the most comical moments from the other resident, only we could easily have spent more time with them for more laughs.
Story – The story here follows tow rivalling brothers who must deal with the loss of their flock of sheep and the effects that will cause, which might finally see them put aside their differences for the better. This is based on an Icelandic movie, with most of the Australian culture sprinkled into how everything unfolds, it does show how overly committed to being the best two farmers are, how losing everything could turn people into doing something desperate and needing to put aside differences could bring about a better life for everyone around you. The core story does unfold well, it is the side characters that seem to get small threads of story, which just seem to get forgotten too quickly through the film, which could have added even more light heartedness to the story.
Themes – Rams is a comedy drama that does get the mix of the two down very well, it does use the gorgeous backdrops to show us the beauty of the area the film is set in, while giving us a reality check on how diseases would need to be eliminated quickly to save more around them.
Signature Entertainment Presents Rams on Digital Platforms 5th February