Feature Image Credit: Columbia Pictures (Source: IMDb)
I want to start of by saying that I will be mentioning certain elements from the film that may deemed to be controversial. I respect all point of views and this is simply an observation for entertainment purposes.
I am aware of the reputation Sausage Party (2016) has created for it self. Its offensive and explicit humor resinates with its audience in a negative way and it universally bashed by many critiques. However, many are too focused on the uncensored ending, that lack to understand the underlining meaning behind the plot as a metaphor for mortality.
Created by candid actor Seth Rogan, the film focuses grocery store items (mostly food) as they seek to “chosen” by the “gods” (humans) to be bought and expect a better life in the “great beyond” unknown of what lies ahead. Soon the sausage, Frank (Rogan) learns the horrifying truth that he will eventually become a meal. After warning his pals about their similar fate, the panicked perishables devise a plan to escape from their human enemies and embark on a search for meaning. Through out this journey, they witness massive deaths that make these characters question the very foundations of their life, including their beliefs.
They begin each morning with a song appreciating the gods for everything that they will do for these items once they reach the great beyond. A concept we conduct in a religion over the course of our life. Once the grocery items are picked, they learn the horrible truth about the great beyond: it is not what its projected to be. Since actors Seth Rogan and James Franco are outspoken atheist, I presume the film to be an alloy on religion.
Though out their existence, they were made to believe that the great beyond was a “magical” place were all fantasies and desires come true, instead of what it actually is, horror. Later on in the film, the sausage Frank learns that this myth was created to remove the fear of death and create desire to be chosen to pass on. This scene reminds me of Ricky Gervais’s 2009 film The Invention of Lying, about a man who develops the ability to lie in a universe that prides its self on honesty. His mother is on the verge of death and confesses to Gervais character that she is afraid of dying because of the unknown. He comforts her by creating a fantasy of life after death; telling her that she will be young once again and all her dreams would come true. This is exactly what occur in Sausage Party, the grocery items were told this lie to make death less horrific and implement the idea that there is something better waiting us.
Towards the ends with all the characters living life to the fullest as they wait their impending death, this made me think: metaphorically, aren’t we all grocery items unknowing waiting to be devoured?
The film ends with the character realizing they are not real and that their world is fabricated, which in turn reminds me of Descartes famous line: “I think there for I am.” Shouldn’t this concept apply to these characters?
Never be afraid to over analyze a film; it all part of being a cinephile!