Up and Coming Weekly is a weekly publication in Fayetteville, NC and Fort Bragg, NC area offering local news, views, arts, entertainment and community event and business information.
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SEPTEMBER 14-20, 2016 UCW 19 WWW.UPANDCOMINGWEEKLY.COM When Is Racism Okay? Sausage Party (Rated R) by HEATHER GRIFFITHS My childhood friend Brooke is a vegetarian. As an animal lover who occasionally flirts with the lifestyle, I respect and support her choices. As a lifelong smarty pants, I used to tell her that carrots emitted a high pitched scream, inaudible to the human ear when they were bitten. This is more or less the premise of Sausage Party (89 minutes). According to co-writer Seth Rogen, he and his friends based the movie on how messed up it would be if our all food had feelings. The idea is more than a little bit unsettling, even for those of us who are already comfortable eating things with faces. In a supermarket called Shopwell's, the various food products are pacified with the idea of the Great Beyond, a kind of paradise that will reward well- behaved food. Each morning, the corn, having the best "ear" for music, begins a worshipful chorus that quickly degenerates into promises of sectarian violence against other food groups. I'm sure the writers intended this to be an amusing commentary on religious wars, but they really push the boundaries of good taste when they have the German food planning to annihilate the Juice. As much as I appreciate a good pun, some of those used in the movie are rather… punishing. We meet our hero, a shelf-stable sausage named Frank (Rogen), as he flirts with his bun-to-be, Brenda (Kristen Wiig) in the package next to his. Frank is friends with Barry (Michael Cera) a deformed sausage — and why anyone would buy a pack of sausages that includes one that looks short and weird is a mystery. While people can and should all be as different and weird as possible, when food is a different color or size than it's supposed to be, it's gross. Anyway, a human shopper grabs both packages, but during the trip to the register a struggle ensues, and Frank goes over the edge of the cart with Brenda, while Barry makes it out of the store with the rest of the package. When he arrives in the Great Beyond he realizes that humans do not worship and nurture food, they use hot water and knives to torture it. He escapes, only to wind up in the home of a drug addict (James Franco). And guess what? When you use bath salts, the doors of perception are opened, and you get to see walking, talking food. The rest of the film is primarily an excuse to be as racist, sexist and heterosexist as possible in order to generate the maximum level of offensiveness, and, therefore, comedy. I like shows like South Park because they take racism, sexism, stereotypes and other idiocy to their most extreme point in order to showcase real social problems. The best shows from the series are equally likely to highlight issues associated with hardcore conservative approaches to life as they are to skewer extreme liberalism. Sausage Party wants similar credibility, but it is nothing more or less than a continuous screen of offensive stereotypes parading across the stream. There is no subversion of expectation here, no grand dénouement showcasing the essential absurdity of harmful ethnocentrism — just a literal food orgy in celebration of mass murder. So, enjoy, if that's your thing. Now showing at Patriot 14 + IMAX. HEATHER GRIFFITHS, Contributing Writer. COMMENTS? Editor@ upandcomingweekly.com. 910.484.6200. Special Guest Christi Edelbrock 1st Family of NASCAR $i. 50 Drink, Every Day, All Day! $i. 50 Drink, Every Day, All Day! $i. 50 Popcorn. Every Day All Day! $i. 50 Popcorn. Every Day All Day! $i. 50 Popcorn. Every Day All Day! $i. 50 Drinks. Every Day, All Day! $i. 50 Drinks. Every Day, All Day! $i. 50 Drinks. Every Day, All Day! $2.00 before 6:00 p.m. $3.00 after 6:00 p.m. $1.00 extra for 3D MOVIES Movie Monday: $1.50 All Day(Holiday or 3D movies excluded)