Synopsis: A sausage strives to discover the truth about his existence
Stars: Seth Rogen, Kristen Wiig, Salma Hayek, Edward Norton, David Krumholtz, Nick Kroll, Michael Cera, James Franco, Jonah Hill, Craig Robinson, Bill Hader, Anders Holm, Paul Rudd, Danny McBride
Director: Conrad Vernon, Greg Tiernan
Running Length: 89 minutes
TMMM Score: (7.5/10)
Review: The team behind Sausage Party are funny guys…no, really, they are. The trouble is, they have trouble with starring in movies that are actually…y’know…funny. At least to me. Saying this animated R-rated raunch fest is from the team that made 2013’s This is the End didn’t exactly inspire me to be counting down the days to its release. If anything, it made me dread the day I had to sit in a theater and listen to Seth Rogen play a foul-mouthed but well-meaning hot dog looking to become one with a bun voiced by Kristen Wiig.
Maybe it was a wise choice for the folks behind the Sausage Party screening to give everyone over 21 a free drink because when the movie started my belly was warm with a concoction called Meat Juice (Jägermeister, Grapefruit Juice, Orange Juice, Soda, and Lime…overall as gross as it sounds) and I was feeling a nice little buzz. It weakened my defenses, I think, because not only did I laugh harder than I thought I would but I wound up enjoying it for all of its surreally filthy fun.
It doesn’t take long for the first F-bomb to be dropped as a grocery store and its products awake for another day in paradise. In a 4th of July display, a package of hot dogs sits next to a bag of buns and wiener Frank (Rogen, The Guilt Trip) waxes vulgar of what he’d like to do to bun Brenda (Wiig, Ghostbusters). Anatomical questions aside, you just have to go with the fact that these food products are horned up, crude, and disarmingly pleasant even when spouting nasty thoughts. I mean, when the main villain is a douche (literally) you have to step back and remember that you signed up for this one and love it for all its gross out rough edges.
Written by Rogen and three of his collaborators, the film becomes a journey of food understanding its place in the great circle of life and taking a stand against the “gods” (humans) that aren’t coming in to save them but to devour them. Trust me, it will make your look at everything from bubble gum to toilet paper in a different light. You’ll still use them…but once you’ve seen a face on a used prophylactic you just can’t return to the real world unscathed.
Directors Conrad Vernon and Greg Tiernan have brought together a most impressive list of voice talent too. In addition to Rogen & Wiig, there’s Salma Hayek (Savages), Edward Norton (The Grand Budapest Hotel), David Krumholtz (Hail, Caesar!), Nick Kroll (Vacation), Michael Cera, James Franco (Homefront), Jonah Hill (The Wolf of Wall Street), Craig Robinson (Get On Up), Bill Hader (Inside Out), Anders Holm (The Intern), Paul Rudd (Wanderlust), and Danny McBride (Aloha).
A good 10 minutes too long, the film, um, climaxes with an orgy so grotesquely dirty that it makes the one in Caligula look like a trip down the yellow brick road. That bravado in going so low is what made me respect the film and its creators because it takes more than a rude mind to get to the places that this one does. It goes without saying that if you’re a parent and you bring your child to this you are absolutely terrible but adults looking for a summer comedy that actually provides laughs have found a feast.