Alright, I have mixed feelings about this one. Since Sausage Party is an animated film, and due to my processing of it, I will format the review differently than my others. It’s more of an essay than a report card this time around. I hope you don’t mind. Now don’t let my review discourage you from the film, but like most Rogen-Goldberg creations, it is either for you or it’s not. The movie is meant to be fun and brainless, if that’s what you’re into. It’s something you need to go into with an open mind- most definitely.
The gist of the film: A city of anthropomorphic food in the Hopewell’s supermarket is run by the belief that they will be chosen by the gods (humans) to go to the “Great Beyond.” They perform a singing ritual every morning, hoping to be picked up and taken away to a better place. The foods’ lives are guided by their beliefs. There is fear of misbehaving, giving into urges, and escaping their packages. The isles are organized a certain way, and that’s how things are supposed to be.
Frank (Seth Rogen) the hot dog is looking forward to life outside the market with his girlfriend Brenda (Kristen Wiig) the bun. While Frank, Brenda, and friends are being taken away on Red, White, and Blue Day, a returned Honey Mustard decides to blow the whistle on the gods. Attempting to escape his doom, Honey Mustard (Danny McBride) tries to throw himself out of the cart, and Frank saves him, causing him, Brenda, and a literal Douche (Nick Kroll) to fall out of the cart. Faced with the task of returning to their isles, Frank and Brenda go on an adventure in the supermarket, and Frank decides to search for the truth. Along the way they meet a bagel names Sammy (Edward Norton) and a Lavash (David Krumholtz), and gain assistance from Teresa the Taco (Salma Hayek).
Frank learns that the Non-Perishables- Fire Water (Bill Hader), Grits (Craig Robinson), and Twink have made up the Great Beyond and the benevolence of the “gods” in order to shield the market foods from their unfortunate fate of consumption. After realizing the truth, Frank and his friends, including Barry (Michael Cera) plan a mutiny over the humans. In the end, the food wins and live happily(?) ever after.
Sausage Party not so sneakily tries to teach us about tolerance. Being grounded in racial stereotypes, the film tells us that we need to put aside our differences, but also respect each other’s beliefs. I admit, it’s not the best way to incorporate that kind of message- especially due to what happens afterward (I won’t spoil it, but BE WARNED).
I admire Seth Rogen and the cast of this film, I really do. Sausage Party boasts an all-star cast with players such as Seth Rogen, Jonah Hill, Michael Cera, James Franco, Salma Hayek, Bill Hader, Kristen Wiig, Paul Rudd, Craig Robinson, and Edward Norton (gasps for air.) among others. They are all genuinely funny people and admire them all for their boldness in creating something different from a lot of the fodder that is coming out these days. Based on the current box office reports, Sausage Party will do pretty well ($3.3 in Thursday night previews) proving that well-marketed original content still is very desirable.
I enjoyed Sausage Party, but it’s one of those movies I questioned myself about. Most of the writing is pretty clever, and I loved the endless food puns.
I relish the fact that you mustard the courage to ketchup! (I probably didn’t get the whole line right)
However, a lot of the film’s jokes are based in racial and ethnic stereotypes, and heavy sexual innuendos-of course. The bagel is Jewish. Grits is a black guy. Twink(ie) is…You get what I’m saying. This film is not for you if you are easily offended. My religious friends, I advise you steer clear of this film altogether. Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg, and a lot of their fellow creators try to appear really progressive (Hint Neighbors 2) and seem as if they are trying to negate their past filmmaking wrongs (Superbad, Knocked Up, and more recently The Interview) but they are trying way too hard. They seem as if they are trying to “get” things they don’t truly get.
Adriana, The Cinema Soloist