A Raunchy R-Rated Cartoon With An Actual Plot? How Dare ‘Sausage Party’ Be This Good!
Parodying animated kid movies, ‘Sausage Party‘ is about a hotdog named Frank (Seth Rogen) trying to discover the meaning of his existence. Him and the other products at the Shopwell grocery store believe after the store’s doors is “The Great Beyond”. Little do they know their “Gods” are just humans trying to live their lives. Humans are unaware of the food’s human-like personalities so they freely go about eating and using the product as they would.
First of all, what the movie does best is not only make you laugh but provokes thought. I didn’t expect themes like blindly believing in religion or Israeli–Palestinian conflict to be used here. Not only did directors Greg Tierman and Conrad Vernon mix smart subjects in with raunchy humor, they did it REALLY well. This reminded me of a phrase the infamous filth director John Waters says: “To know bad taste, you have to know the rules of good taste”. I believe Tierman, Vernon, and the writers knew exactly how to shock & offend on the highest level they could.
Don’t get me wrong, this film is totally politically incorrect and quite offensive but that’s the best part. I personally feel like you couldn’t have made this project without pushing the boundaries to the max. There was moments that puzzled me on how they got things like orgies or decapitations passed the MPAA. Because the animated nature, all of this debauchery was overlooked by the strict rating system but digging deeper, this is dark. So dark that another critic turned to me after the film and said “I expected that to be a little more funny”.
“Legs, huh? Look at me! Look at me! I ain’t got no legs, you fuck! You ate my goddamn legs!”
–A Slice Of Pizza
That’s not to say ‘Sausage Party‘ isn’t hysterical. Honestly, having Meatloaf cameo as Meatloaf is comedic gold. There’s so many great puns but Sammy Bagel Jr. has to be stand out to me. Even the villain of the movie is literally a douche. But under all the fun was this message about challenging what you are told to believe. This social commentary has been slowly growing within Seth Rogen projects and it shows here. While he may rely on stereotypes for some of the characters, you know like gays being fruits, it all felt fun and not malicious. It shows you can be a little risky but not truly offend anyone.
Also, love the animation used here. Because an adult animated film like this hasn’t been done since maybe Rob Zombie’s ‘Haunted World Of Super Beasto‘, this was nearly uncharted territory. Using a normal Dreamsworks style of animation really made it feel like you are watching a kid’s film. That is until scenes where characters shoot up bath salts or the food has a massive orgy. Escaping into the animation was part of making this project work. Thankfully, they created a world so subversive and detailed that it’s an easy feat to get lost in Shopwell.
This may come off as a minor spoiler to some but I found it genius that the only way for humans to see the food and products come to life is by doing drugs. Something like this is a great way of saying when you are high, you are more perceptive to abnormal things. And by abnormal I mean scenes where food die like in ‘Saving Private Ryan‘ and even a few musical numbers.
Will this film offend many? Yeah, sure it will but I think the film is more intelligent than harmful. Sometimes stereotypes & cliches can be used to your advantage to mock the ones who use them. It successfully makes someone laugh at themselves without even knowing. At the core, it’s a silly movie about a hot dog and a bun falling in love and trying to figure out the world but the movie knows how to be serious when making you laugh. ‘Sausage Party‘ is like what ‘Family Guy‘ has been trying to do for 15 seasons but done in less than 90 minutes.