Sunday Tasmanian - Tassie Living - - WEEK IN MOVIES -

Direc­tors: Greg Tier­nan, Con­rad Ver­non Star­ring: the voices of Seth Ro­gen, Kris­ten Wiig, Jonah Hill, Bill Hader, Ed­ward Nor­ton, Salma Hayek Ver­dict: Live by the sword, fry by the sword

IS Sausage Party the dirt­i­est film of 2016? Un­ques­tion­ably. And unashamedly. Re­ally, how could it not be? There’s no po­lite way to sum­marise the plot. So look away now if you’d rather keep the day all squeaky clean.

This is the story of a hot dog named Frank (voiced by Seth Ro­gen) whose one goal in life is to be lodged within a bun named Brenda (Kris­ten Wiig).

Is Sausage Party the fun­ni­est film of 2016?

Not quite. But it is up there in the ROFL rank­ings in what ad­mit­tedly hasn’t been a great year for cine­matic chuck­les. First, a word of warn­ing (as if that sin­gle-en­ten­dre ti­tle was not enough of one): this an­i­mated (yes, an­i­mated) com­edy is not for the faint of heart, nor del­i­cate of con­sti­tu­tion.

The screen­play has been co-penned by Ro­gen and Evan Gold­berg, and in keep­ing with a ma­jor­ity of projects to spring from th­ese like-minded lairs – we’re talk­ing movies like Su­per­bad, Pineap­ple Ex­press and This is the End – Sausage Party’s “adult” hu­mour in­evitably goes with its groin ahead of its gut.

In what can only be de­scribed as a tawdry tear­ing-up of the Toy Story tem­plate, the ac­tion takes place mostly af­ter-hours on the aisles and shelves of a sub­ur­ban su­per­mar­ket.

All prod­ucts for sale are walk­ing, talk­ing and (wouldn’t you just know it?) sex-ob­sessed be­ings, and shop­pers are none the wiser.

Wis­dom is not the strong suit of the pre-pack­aged he­roes of this tale, ei­ther. Ev­ery­body thinks to be pur­chased and taken home by a con­sumer to what is known as “The Great Beyond” is the equiv­a­lent of be­ing trans­ported to par­adise.

There have been oc­ca­sional ru­mours of prod­ucts be­ing stabbed, carved up, boiled and eaten, but th­ese are still just ru­mours.

Though Sausage Party is above all else a car­nally in­clined car­toon, there is more to the movie than just be­ing Pixar with a potty mouth. (Another warn­ing : F-bombs are det­o­nated ev­ery few sec­onds, as are ex­plo­sive ex­ple­tives from across the cussing al­pha­bet.)

Look (and lis­ten) past Sausage Party’s un­re­lent­ing per­fect storm of pro­fan­ity, and there is ac­tu­ally a semi-so­phis­ti­cated al­le­gory in play con­cern­ing the dan­gers of blind faith in re­li­gion, blind prej­u­dice along eth­nic lines, and blind in­tol­er­ance of sex­u­al­i­ties that do not con­form to all norms.

While it won’t be win­ning any awards for amaz­ing wit, there is no deny­ing Sausage Party is grap­pling with (or is that grop­ing?) more themes and is­sues than any live­ac­tion com­edy in re­cent mem­ory.

One final warn­ing : Sausage Party saves its best-worst for last, clos­ing with a truly as­ton­ish­ing se­quence des­tined to dis­turb, dis­gust and de­light any dam­aged mind who thinks they’ve seen it all.

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