Sausage Party and the God-Hating Hedonism of Animated Food

I’ve been accused of holding to an outdated, untenable belief system before, but rarely by an animated sausage.

That was before Sausage Party, Seth Rogen’s slightly clever, outrageously foul and super offensive animated sex comedy. Sure, I was expecting it to be foul and offensive and really, really preoccupied with sex and drugs. We’re talking about Rogen, after all. But I wasn’t prepared for the spirit of the late Christopher Hitchens to be ironically reincarnated in a hot dog. Yet here we are.

Caution: spoiled food ahead.

The story opens in a typical suburban supermarket filled with cheerful, gullible foodstuffs. Each morning, the aisles resound with a hymn to the “gods” who pick them up, toss them in a cart and carry them into the “Great Beyond,” a place of eternal bliss where (the food believes) the gods will care for them.

A brief moment of happiness, courtesy Sausage Party
A brief moment of happiness, courtesy Sausage Party

Alas, the Great Beyond just ain’t so great. Not for food, anyway. After a jar of honey mustard decides suicide is preferable to the horrors that await beyond the supermarket’s sliding doors, the intrepid talking sausage Frank decides to go on a spiritual quest for the Truth. He discovers that the gods are ravenous monsters and that the paradise of the Great Beyond is a fiction created to keep the food reasonably docile. Their faith is a sham.

When he tries to bring this truth back to the masses, he runs into resistance. His girlfriend, Brenda the bun, believes their travails are because the gods are punishing them. Frank rails against Brenda’s blind devotion and encourages she and the rest of the supermarket to abandon their wayward “faith.” No one listens to him, because (we’re told) he’s just too strident, dismissing his fellow foodstuffs’ beliefs (a slap at Richard Dawkins and the wave of angry atheists that were all the rage a few years back). A sausage friend tells Frank that he needs to give them an inspirational alternative—”a better way.”

The better way, apparently, involves killing the “gods” in an outlandish bloodbath and lots and lots of sex—every sort of sex you can imagine, really. But Frank’s tone never changes. While he admits that “no one knows everything,” he still belittles the supermarket’s collective faith, encouraging his fellow food to abandon “outdated ways” and relish in the beauty of “our lives” and “our bodies.”

It’s a surprisingly clear, bold message, coming as it does from a raunchy sex comedy: Your gods are jerks. Your faith is a crock. Live for the moment because that’s all there is.

Click CONTINUE to find out why this seductive message resonates in the 21st century and read the rest of Paul’s review:

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