Seth Rogen’s animated movie is a food horror story
I am predisposed to be kind to Seth Rogen right now because the premiere of the TV show he’s producing, Preacher, was announced (May 22), and I am very much looking forward to this show and my friend E texted me from SXSW after the pilot screened there to say things like, “You’re going to love it” and, “It will make you so happy.” I generally like everything Rogen and his creative partner, Evan Goldberg, do together, but I was a little skeptical of the pitch for their animated movie about food, Sausage Party. When Rogen & Goldberg go high concept, it doesn’t always work out (see also: The Interview).
Well the first trailer for Sausage Party came out yesterday, and I am sold. It starts out normal enough, with kind of a Toy Story vibe with the packaged food at a grocery store excited to be chosen to go home with a person. Rogen voices a hot dog and Kristen Wiig is a lady-bun he’s in love with. The food is so excited to be chosen, to “go to eternity”. Cute.
Then the potato peeler comes out and it turns into a horror movie. Baby carrots shriek “I want my mommy!” as they’re masticated, there’s an homage to Saving Private Ryan as a broken can of pasta tries to scoop its spaghetti back inside and an Oreo picks up one of its cookie-halves like it’s been amputated, and by that time, I was laughing HARD. This setup is fantastic and the execution, at least of the gags in the trailer, is great.
The only concern I have is that it’s borderline cheap humor for the potato to be Irish and there’s something wearing war paint and doing a stereotypical Indian accent that I do not like. I tried to figure out what this food item is supposed to be—a block of cheese?—because if they’re mocking a specific, real-world product that uses a tribal name to sell people—cheese?—the joke can turn around to be funny, but it will depend entirely on the context.
But that aside, Sausage Party looks like another win for Rogen & Goldberg. It’s due in August, and by that time, they may have already logged a summer movie win (Neighbors 2), and could have a hit TV show under their belts, too. Did you ever think, watching Freaks and Geeks, that Seth Rogen would turn out to be a mogul?
Red-band trailer, NSFW language
Mike Windle/ Roger Kisby/ Getty Images