Metaphysical Sausage Party

Imagine you were having a spiritual crisis. There you are, wondering, asking yourself about God and the meaning of life.

And then you stumble upon a film on pay TV that seems to offer answers, precisely at the moment of your crisis. You might think, “wow, this is heaven –sent. Thank you God!”

Of course, it’s a bit of an oxymoron, if heaven sent you a film that gets into an intense religious debate, concerning the nature of religion and God, via allegory of course, leaving you to say nope there’s no God.

While I found it a bit heavy-handed, I love ambition. You never reach the sky if you don’t aim high, and Sausage Party is a lot more than its title would suggest, a film that can be taken on many levels. That title for example has sexual connotations.


Or in other words, while Sausage Party is an animated film, a full-length cartoon, it is decidedly not for children. No!!

It’s full of violence, more gore than anything I’ve seen in a long time. It makes you cringe a fair bit.

It’s got more swear words than a Tarentino movie.

And yes, it’s full of sensual imagery throughout.

Need I add: that the animation is spectacular? imaginative?

If you go by the first half-hour, you might find Sausage Party a bit too intense, trying way too hard. It’s hitting you over the head with its quest for meaning, possibly because it takes itself a little too seriously as a stoner picture. I felt I was having déjà vu, watching a food-based remake of Fritz The Cat.

Normally I avoid spoilers, but I have to make an exception in this case. While I got the impression that it didn’t do well at the box office—perhaps because it disappeared before I had a chance to see it: although google tells me it did quite well, easily making back its investment in its first week of release, and making several times that amount before too long.

YES it’s clear that the participants had a wonderful time making it. I don’t like it when I watch a play or opera, where the cast seem to be certain that what they’re doing is profound, even though the only thing that gets across the footlights is the reek of pompous self-importance, where you envy them their awesome project and wish you could have been involved. Okay so maybe Sausage Party is similarly guilty. Why not, when the voices are the work of the usual suspects, as in, the current cool stoner kids in Hollywood: Jonah hill, James Franco, Kristen Wiig, Bill Hader, Seth Rogen, plus more serious artists such as Salma Hayek and Ed Norton.

They’re self-infatuated, and who could blame them, as they likely made each other laugh during recording sessions, and likely only 20% of that wit made it into the film. Even so, there’s quite a bit of eye-candy, quite a bit of conceptual shenanigans to excite you. No it’s not for everyone. But I confess it hit the spot in a year when I needed something imaginative, subversive, passionate.  This is an adult cartoon at a time when nobody seems to behave like an adult anymore.

If it’s the end of the world, grab someone and have fun.  Carpe diem? or carpe bosom.

And the party goes on, because I get to see it again tomorrow.

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