|Just be glad that I found a Sausage Party pic where they had their bottoms on|
IntroSausage Party is nowhere near being one of the first R-rated theatrical animated films in history. There have been plenty before it going as far back as the 70's (when the ratings system was new). Back then, it was the sequel to the X-rated comic adaptation of Fritz the Cat (1972) called, The Nine Lives of Fritz the Cat (1974). Each decade followed with another "controversial" (a big word meaning that a lot of people talked about it) feature.
In the early 80's, it was the odd (but rockin) film, Heavy Metal (1981), followed near the end of the decade by another cult classic in 1988 (Akira). In 1992, Cool World was released and screamed of studio tampering (R-rated story edited down to be a friendlier PG-13), and nothing really surfaced in the U.S. until 1999's hilarious South Park: Bigger, Longer and Uncut came out. Since then, it's been mostly a string of foreign films and straight-to-video releases. And The Haunted World of El Superbeasto (2009) doesn't count. It was just pure trash. Even the studios didn't want to touch it.
What can be said about Sausage Party that the red band trailers haven't already laid out? Not much. The easiest way to summarize this film, is to say that it is an eighty minute build up to a hilarious punchline. The story is nothing special, just a foulmouthed and warped version of Toy Story. And foulmouthed it is.
Look, I'm all for profanity, especially when it's coming from a pack of hot dogs. But when you have those hot dogs and every animated thing spewing out two or more F-bombs in every sentence just because you can, the transparency of a thin script begins to present itself. The shock value loses its affect very quickly, except at the end (wink wink). Also, the evenly distributed amount of racism loses its luster. Everything about this is trendy and contemporary.
The sexual references are funny as well, but strangely enough, those too become desperate and cross the threshold of funny into the realm of some half-naked pervert's thoughts just vomited out for the world to see. The bloodless violence is extremely effective though. Moments of carnage cleverly use the contents of their products to simulate horrific injuries. The animation reflects the quality of its budget ($19 mil), and belongs somewhere on the lines of a straight-to-video animated sequel to bigger hits in the 2000's (Open Season 2, Brother Bear 2). In what I could only think is the film makers' statement against product placement, all of the packages are bland and generally have a sarcastic name to them.
The list of actors and/or comedians is long, yet only a handful are worth mentioning. Sure Seth Rogen (Kung Fu Panda), Jonah Hill (Megamind), and Michael Cera (The Lego Batman Movie), play the same people that they always play (horny pothead, sarcastic asshole, coward), but enough is enough. The entertaining ones here are from Danny McBride (The Angry Birds Movie), Nick Kroll (The League), and Kristen Wiig (Despicable Me 2). McBride is great as a neurotic jar of Honey Mustard, Kroll oozes evil creepiness as a literal douche, and Wiig doesn't take any crap as a voluptuous hot dog bun. The other costars have moments that are riddled in racial stereotypes that sometimes work, and sometimes don't. When it's all said and done there's not much to remember. One-note characters can only carry so much load.
The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly, of Sausage Party
The Good- Honey Mustard's "don't f***in touch me!" tirade, a fallen bag of flower creates an atmosphere that would make Steven Spielberg (Saving Private Ryan) proud, Douche goes over the line more than once, bath salt freak out, Twink's enthusiastic advice on emotional trauma, revenge on the Gods, and the products going Caligula crazy.
The Bad- What's the shelf life of these things? Wouldn't they come and go too quickly to even realize what's going on? Unless they were at a Ninety-Nine Cent store; That shit stays forever.
The Ugly- Of course they had to break the fourth wall. We only didn't have to hear Rogen the whole time, but then we had to see him as well.
Sausage Party is nothing special except for a few hilarious moments here and there. It's one of those films that somebody high off of their ass would appreciate more than the average person. Hell, there's barely anything that I remember about it and I was sober during my entire viewing! That says something, and it does so without a single F-bomb. F*** it! Go see this at the drive-in or matinee while you're baked. You'll probably appreciate it more. For what? I have no idea.
Rating- 3 out of 10
Sausage Party (2016)
R | 1h 29min | Animation, Adventure, Comedy | 12 August 2016 (USA)
A sausage strives to discover the truth about his existence.
Directors: Greg Tiernan, Conrad Vernon
Writers: Kyle Hunter (screenplay), Ariel Shaffir (screenplay)
Stars: Seth Rogen, Kristen Wiig, Jonah Hill