“Sausage Party” serves up overly crude laughs, deliciously clever satire

Brenda (Kristen Wiig), Frank (Seth Rogen), Sammy (Ed Norton) in Columbia Pictures' "SAUSAGE PARTY."

Photo courtesy of Sony Pictures

“So, I just saw ‘Sausage Party.’”

That is about the only comment one can make after seeing a film so unabashedly filled with cursing, food puns, and enough sex jokes to make any desensitized college student blush. From start to finish, the movie tosses indecent illustrations of character interactions and startlingly offensive dialogue. Despite it being consistently hard to swallow, if the audience can mustard it, while having the strength to keep up and ketchup, “Sausage Party” can be relished as a hilarious celebration of awe-inspiring vulgarity and delightful absurdity.

To be frank, pun intended, the film is undeniably unique. The 3D animation is not exactly spectacular compared to other recent movies, but it does have a very distinct style. The bright colors and fast paced movements lend themselves well to the screwball comedy. This particular style provides the characters with the opportunity to fully embrace the more brutal elements of the physical comedy. Our appetizing animated friends are ripped apart and smashed to pieces in somewhat spectacular fashion due to some impressive direction. In these gruesome scenes, each angle is carefully placed to create a sense of hilarious horror as the processed protagonist’s meet their maker.

Although it is decidedly inappropriate, the movie’s dialogue is extremely effective. Seth Rogan and company weave curses and slurs into a new sort of art form that is, at the same time, gut-bustlingly funny and widely tasteless. The sexual references are a major portion of the film, and might even be the reason it was created. This realm of comedy is highly subjective, and many would consider innuendos such as these to be in poor taste. However, one has to give credit where credit is due. Most of these sexual jokes and innuendos are surprisingly well-thought out and crafted. This is due to the continuously impressive way that the dialogue is written and the committed performances of all the cast members. While watching the film, an audience member would have to search relentlessly to hear a bad performance within “Sausage Party.” Every actor spins the raunchy conversations to their character’s advantage, and seamlessly create relatable identities. It was incredibly surprising in a movie as absurd as “Sausage Party” to actually feel for the dilemmas of the protagonist. Despite the context, the film was able to accomplish this feat in multiple scenes due to the dedicated voice work. Walking, talking, glove-wearing food had believable mannerisms and personalities. That, in itself, is no small feat, and is kind of a big dill.

The actual plot, I’m sure, can be interpreted in different ways, depending on how “open-minded” audience members are. I, personally, saw it as a pseudo-satire of the Pixar formula, where, undenounced to people, animated objects or animals come to life and act like humans. In “Sausage Party,” the fact that the humans cannot see them as alive becomes the main dilemma, and is a very clever way of subverting the popular cliché. This fresh take gave the plot the ability to progress organically and be consistently entertaining. The one glaring flaw within the plot is this ongoing subtext that analyzes people’s belief systems, and is possibly a criticism of religion. The issue being that this analyzation eventually goes nowhere and ends in a shockingly predictable and crowd pleasing fashion. Many audience members would have found this subtext to be offensive if it had been fully explored, but at least it would have served a purpose. Despite that narrative hiccup, “Sausage Party” is never boring. Each scene leaves you wondering how the characters will react to their reality being hysterically shattered.

“Sausage Party” will be a non-stop laugh fest for some and a cringe-worthy gut-punch for others. It is a particular brand of comedy that is both juvenile and grossly inappropriate. It is, however, impressively thought-out juvenile and inappropriate humor. Between the excellent voice actors and the sheer detail of the physical comedy, it’s obvious that great care was taken to bring this crass comedy to life. This makes the movie tough to describe and near impossible to judge without bias. All in all, its uniqueness somehow finds a way to overpower the negative portions of the film. For all those who can stomach intensely graphic food violence and intensely raunchy food interactions, “Sausage Party” will leave you hungry for more.

To contact Lifestyles Editor Olivia Ladd email lifestyles@mtsusidelines.com.

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1 Comment

  1. Avatar
    April 29, 2017

    I just seen sausage party with a group of friends yesterday and I must say it is not like a movie I have ever seen before. There were a lot of races and religions represented by different foods. I didn’t mind it too much considering they were making fun of everyone and not just one group. However, I understand the message they were trying to get across to the audience but I think they could have handled it differently. They were trying to give a religious message while also having a lot of sex innuendos. Speaking of the innuendos, there was a scene at the end that caught me off guard. I knew what was going to happen due to what I’ve been hearing, but it lasted longer that I expected it to. Something else I didn’t expect to happen was some death of humans. That whole scene was a wild ride. I am questioning what are they going to do when other humans start walking into the store. Is the whole scene basically going to happen again? Stepping away from the story, the animation was really well done as well as the lighting. I was told it took months just to render scenes. Overall, the movie was okay. I wouldn’t see it again though.

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