My opinion right after watching film
My opinion after watching this is…….. WOW, I was not expecting this film to be so graphic and…… raunchy. Sure, I laughed a few times, and they do establish that it is in an alternate world, but the stuff in this film made me uncomfortable more than it made me comfortable. The film is not bad by any sense, but it is for sure not for kids, and I would debate that it is not for a lot of adults either. Not my type of film.
Seth Rogen has been working on the production of the film for 8 years, but no one wanted to pick it up because they did not like the premise, and was scared of the rating the film would have received. It officially got picked up in 2010, and things officially took off. Many people that were involved would talk about how they are working on an R-rated animated film, but not a lot of people believed them. It was officially announced in 2013, which is a partnership from Sony, Annapurna Pictures, and Point Grey Pictures.
Right when I thought there would be nothing to talk about in regards to its production, there is a lot of controversy regarding it. While this film was being made, the animators would be forced to stay overtime, without being paid for it at all. This caused about half of the animating team to quit mid-production, and they were never credited for the work in their film. Apparently, the only reason why we know about this is that a lot of the animators commented on this, and put everyone out there in the comments of a Cartoon Brewl article. With the film being made in Vancouver, and there not being an animation unit over there, it means that there is no union, and people can rip off their animators with when and how much they are getting paid.
The film starts in a shop called Shopwells, and the food are living and anthropomorphic, as they talk to one another, and act like humans. Apparently none of the humans notice that their food has eyes, mouths, eyebrows, etc. The food sing whenever the store opens, as they believe that humans purchase them, so they can live in some sort of promise/heaven-like land. The hotdogs and buns are singing about how they want to fuck (they literally say this in the film) and submerge into one another, though they make fun of the little one named Berry (Michael Cera) for having more girth than length. Brenda (Kristen Wiig) makes fun of Berry, while the other hotdogs tell her boyfriend Frank (Seth Rogen) that she is a cunt. They escape their packages, so they can “rub their tips” against one another…. I fucking can’t. It is 10 minutes already, and all that I have heard is poorly-implied sex.
A few minutes before the store is closed, a woman picks up the hotdog and bun packages, with everyone in the cart celebrating. A douche (Nick Kroll) is put in the cart, as well as a honey mustard can who was returned back to the store (Danny McBride) is put into the cart, and he tries to warn everyone. Brenda is just a rude prick who is insulting everyone left and right.
The bagel represents a person who believes in Judaism, and the lavash represents a person who believes in Islam. Frank tells them that they should go through the liquor aisle, where all of the cans and bottles were free so they can party. Still bewildered and doubtful about the information Honey Mustard told him about their beliefs about the human (a nudge about how religion may or may not be what people believe it to be), he goes to the Firewater (Bill Hader), who represents a native person because they were the first there; and the firewater does not have an expiration date. He is told that there is a cookbook at the end of the store, which will tell him the truth about what humans do with food.
Douche is taken to the back room, but repairs himself by drinking some of the grape juice leftover. He decides to go after Frank, and to pretty much rape Brenda because he is horny, and was robed of being used by the woman who would have purchased him. After the other three ran away from Douche, they go in a bar meet a taco named Teresa (Salma Hayek), who is struggling with her sexuality. She hides them in a closer, before they bail, causing Douche to look after them even more.
Brenda and Frank reunite, where he tells her about what he learned, but she chooses to remain optimistic, and this causes an argument between the two. This fight becomes big enough to the point where Brenda breaks up with him, though the scene gets ruined with Brenda telling him of the things she will stuff in her to bother him. Everyone abandons him, and we get a sad song of the lovelorn/broken couple, and I do not feel bad because there is really no reason for us to invest in their relationship outside of the fact that we were told to. All we know is that Frank is kind of generic, and Brenda is a…… wiotch.
After taking some bath salts for drugs, the guy wakes up to hear the food talking to him, thinking that he is hallucinating. He goes crazy, and is instructed by Sam to take him back to the grocery store, which he does after sleeping off his high. Brenda enters another package, where the girls curse her off for squishing one of the buns, while the other three return to their designated aisles. Oh, apparently the hotdogs are sausages, though they are animated to look like hotdogs. Sausages are a bit thicker than hotdogs, and the sausages are thin like hotdogs in this film. I realize how nasty this sounds, even when I am not trying to make it sound as such. Damn.
The store opens, and Brenda’s package is taken, so Frank tries to follow it. Nothing works until Barry and the food from the druggie’s house show up at the grocery store, and with bath salts as well. Apparently they escaped because the human ended up dying and amputated, and they all decide to lace toothpicks with bath salts to shoot the customers with. They end up defeating the humans in an overly graphic and disturbing climax (Douche inserts/impales himself into the store owner (Paul Rudd)’s anus, and all of the food end up killing him). After their celebration, the food objects engage…….. in….. an….. orgy. And… they……. show……. the…. graphic….. parts……. of….. intercourse. WHAT IN THE HELL? It is just way too much, and way too tasteless. WHO wants to watch an orgy with anthropomorphic objects? WHO wants to watch an orgy anyways?
After the orgy, they are told by Firewater that they are not real, and are animated cartoons who are created by and voiced by celebrities; breaking the fourth wall. The film ends with the main characters going to a teleporter to meet their voice actors…… I do not know if this is a leeway to a sequel (I hope not), but….. I am glad this thing is just over.
While there is a lot of depth and detail in the story, there is almost none of that in the characters. Most of them are racial stereotypes, and are one-dimensional. While the main characters are not racial archetypes, they were not deep characters at all.
The animation is actually kind of good. The textures are well-realized, and they do a lot with the setting of a grocery store. I HATE how humanized and anthropomorphic some of the designs were to establish the body of a human, and the animation is also used to capture a lot of racial and sexist stereotypes.
I barely noticed the music to be honest. When there was something sexual, they played music to get to the groove, and when a conflict or an adventure arises, the generic adventure or conflict music was played. Nothing to mention here.
Reception at Release
When the film was released on August 12th, 2016, it has made (as of October 12th) $97.5 million domestically, and $31.6 million in other territories, with a total worldwide amount of $129.1 million. Obviously, it is not much money, but with the R-rating, I think it was expected, and some probably expected it to perform a lot worse.
It seems to be receiving positive reception, despite it being crude and somewhat low-brow. They cited that there is some wittiness and good storytelling behind a lot of the……. how do I put it nicely…… Bullshit.
= 25/40 = 63%