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"Sausage Party:" A Surprising Take-Down of Capitalism

By       Message Mike Rivage-Seul       (Page 1 of 3 pages)     Permalink    (# of views)   13 comments

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What do you call an economic system where:

X Everything is sexualized

X But sexuality is repressed?

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X Products are treated as people?

X People are treated as commodities?

X Theory promises the greatest happiness possible

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X But in reality devours those who believe it?

Of course, that system is the patriarchal "Sausage Party" called capitalism. And that's exactly what's satirized in the film by the same name. The computer-generated animated comedy is raunchy, sophomoric, scatological, irreverent, suggestive and filled with non-stop double entendre. At the same time, it is artistic in its imagery and creative in terms of its star-studded voice cast. Above all, "Sausage Party" is trenchantly critical of idealized capitalist ideology.

Here's how its plot is summarized on-line by Violet LeVoit:

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"A happy-go-lucky sausage (voiced by Seth Rogen) and his supermarket buddies including a hot-dog bun (Kristen Wiig), a bagel (Edward Norton), a sausage (Michael Cera) and a taco (Salma Hayek) learn about the horror that awaits them when humans bring them home to chow down. Despite the hostility they get from other supermarket items ... they embark on an existential adventure to escape from their edible fate. This raunchy animated comedy ... holds the distinction of being the first R-rated computer-animated feature."

That's the apparent tale. However, as it unfolds, the comedy reveals itself as an elaborate send-up of capitalist theory that crumbles upon its entry into the real world.

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Mike Rivage-Seul is a liberation theologian and former Roman Catholic priest. Retired in 2014, he taught at Berea College in Kentucky for 40 years where he directed Berea's Peace and Social Justice Studies Program.Mike blogs (more...)
 

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