Yes indeed, this post is not in any way sponsored. This is a “from-the-gut” post because I believe it wholeheartedly.
It’s become increasingly difficult for my Wife and I to get date time, but when we do we usually make the most of it. This week we were able to sneak off to the movies to see “Sausage Party“, the latest venture (and first animated feature) by Seth Rogen and crew. Typically we go for the Marvel/DC stuff, the Borne series, etc., but not today. No, today was a day to just sit back and laugh at the mindless funny that is a Seth Rogen joint.
Yet….that’s not what we found.
Don’t get me wrong, a ridiculously inappropriate comedy about humanoid food having their lives turned upside down when they find out they only exist to be eaten is not going to win any Academy awards anytime soon. But God dammit….it should.
So why should you take your teen to see it? I’ll put it to you as simply as possible:
Sausage Party is equal parts hilarious, inappropriate, and sexually explicit. There are drugs, foul language to the highest extent, and rude in its blatant use of “standard American racism”.
However, it is also equal parts a political discussion, a religious discussion, a social discussion, and a life discussion. Through the lens of inappropriate comedy, it gives focus to topics that you should really be talking to your teen about. Things that they should know about the world and about faith as they head into the next chapter of life that no High School text book is going to teach them about.
For example, the relationship between two of the characters, Lavash and Sammy Bagel Jr. Lavash is Palestinian, and Sammy Bagel Jr is Jewish. To us adults we immediately know what type of conflict will be brought up between the two and while it is certainly a crude way of representing the struggles of the two nations coexistence, it is a blatant way. It’s straightforward in a way that only comedy can provide.
The Lavash complains about how his “aisle was large and beautiful and everyone was happy and had plenty of space. Until the day the Bagels moved in”. To which the Bagel replies “we were forced out of our home, what did you expect us to do? We can’t just wander the Earth without a home”, etc.
The film very heavily tackles not only social and political issues but focuses heavily on Religion as well. Leading intense (albeit silly) discussions about blindly following a God whose existence is scientifically unproven, and if God does exist, how messed up of an individual God must be.
You should take your Teenager to see this movie because it puts into perspective almost all the crazy things they are about to experience in the open world through a filter that they understand. Comedy reaches everyone at a very basic level of our consciousness and while my generation (and previous generations) were able to learn about these things through comedy such as George Carlin, The Marx Brothers, and Mel Brooks, there has been nothing yet to put these things into focus for Millennials and younger. You can’t make “Blazing Saddles” in 2016 to talk about race. You can show a Millennial George Carlin but that doesn’t mean they’ll understand it, because it’s not their style.
Now I’ll be the first to tell you, not all of this young generation is the same. But one thing has become apparent about Seth Rogen and crew: They reach people.
They have ascended to the level of film-making where it no longer matters what they make. If they put their name on it, it’s going to sell and it’s going to sell big to young people. The key to all of this is that Seth and Evan know it (I think). They recognize the position they are in now, where despite the ruckus and inappropriateness of their comedy, they can talk about things that are important and get through to people.
***Just to clarify, I can’t even say that this is intentional on their part, it just is what it is.***
Unless you are a history teacher or history buff, introducing your teen to these themes of politics, religion, etc…is going to be difficult. Especially with this generation’s ability to know everything. It doesn’t mean that they do, but we all have a tendency to think of the internet as a “backup brain” where we can quickly access information at a moments notice. But they need to TALK about these issues with their parents not only as a way to get to know them on a more personal level, but to really give deep thought to these topics via conversing about them with another individual and forming their own feelings towards each subject.
In short (too late), take your teen to see “Sausage Party”. The best that could possibly happen is it’ll be hilarious and you’ll end up having serious discussions about race, politics, religion and society. The worst that could possibly happen is you have a great time at the movies watching these silly little humanoid food items figure shit out.