The Menu

A young couple travels to a remote island to eat at an exclusive restaurant where the chef has prepared a lavish menu, with some shocking surprises.

  • Released:
  • Runtime: 108 minutes
  • Genre: Comedy, Horror
  • Stars: Anya Taylor-Joy, Ralph Fiennes, Nicholas Hoult, Hong Chau, John Leguizamo, Judith Light, Rob Yang, Reed Birney, Janet McTeer, Aimee Carrero, Paul Adelstein, Mark St. Cyr, Rebecca Koon, Peter Grosz, Christina Brucato, Adam Aalderks
  • Director: Mark Mylod
  • wonderwellwisher - 19 June 2024
    Good platter yet not fulfilling movie experience appetite
    There are movies that entertain, and there are movies that make you think; this film falls into the latter category. The movie takes you on a journey with a group of people making a reservation at an exquisite restaurant that serves a menu picked by the chef. It is on a day when the chef decides to give the guests the shock of their lives, as every dish comes with a surprise of a lifetime.

    The movie is dark humor coated with satire and served on a beautiful platter. Every well-crafted dish is mere perfection and pleasing to the eyes, making your mouth and heart crave it. The whacky names for the dishes and the explanations are mere masterstrokes. Every dish underlines the satire connected to the guests present in the restaurant. The shock value, which appears every now and then in the story, is pure genius and works wonders for the movie.

    The cinematography is brilliant as it encapsulates the essence of the movie. The suspense builds up slowly and reveals the real intentions gradually. However, the revelations are not out of this world, which hampers the overall impact. Once all the cards are laid out, the thrill starts, and it is fun to watch. What takes away from being perfect is that it turns into a one-man show, and hardly anyone tries to escape from the situation. Also, at a point, it gets a bit slow, and you feel disconnected from the movie.

    Ralph Fiennes as the chef, with his poker face, gives the best performance. He surely provides the aura of fear required for the narrative. Anya Taylor-Joy is decent enough, along with the other cast members. The climax is pretty predictable. Beware, the movie has bloodshed and some gory scenes. By the time the credits roll, you will be craving a cheeseburger (movie reference). You can definitely watch it for a different experience, but with lower expectations. #pranureviews #TheMenu #TheMenuReview.
  • berkaydevrim - 9 May 2024
    Good critique of post modernism
    What a fancy world we live in,we use French to show ourselves "intellectual" we go to Italy to show people we only eat quality food and we are a "gourmet" We use fancy words while typing in group chats to show how "poetic" we are. Espically in these post modern times we only read the label thus we became label itself. Constantly creating problems trying not to sink in these soup of madness. Food was the simplest thing back in time,apart from the elite who was able to eat crème de la crème,our ancestors were okay with simple bread and a beer but now even a simplest dish have these cool words in it è ê ê which we cannot even pronunciate,the menu criticizes this post modern madness with the simplest solution,sometime all we need to do is sit back order an simple burger and eat without thinking whether we look intellectual or not.
  • tonosov-51238 - 13 March 2024
    There is truly nothing new in the genre
    A Swedish buffet of deriding entitlement, snobbery, gender issues, and class, for some reason. It is baffling that creators pretend that this restaurant is anywhere near the shoveler bracket unless, from the writer's ivory tower, producing anything automatically makes you a giver. However, if it is all just a cigar for you and you avoid similar mental confrontations with the presumptuous theme about it being an allegory for art itself, then it is a decent black comedy with respectable acting and a great soundtrack.

    For me, even those great actors can't save the characters. Or rather, a lack thereof, because what is on display are societal dead horses the satirists have been mauling for decades now: yappies, politicians, and critics. They try to insert small talk among them, but it's the epitome of forced. They are non-characters. Despite Hoult's captivating performance, the writers' mocking of his character's idolization of Slowik lacks depth and seemingly comes from a place of not relating to someone cherishing a hobby.

    Almost all worthwhile hobbies require some monetary investment, from collecting Space Marines to yachting. The movie never even tries to establish that Tyler's smugness comes from any other source but his deep passion for food. Yes, he can't cook, so what? Is this one of those "you are beneath the author if you can't match him?" How elitist of you, movie. What made the writers believe that Tyler enjoying the chef's course was less genuine than Anya dispassionately biting a cheeseburger to save herself? I guess you can't be insufferable about it. That's the difference. What is it with Hollywood and pretending fast food is genuine hearty meals for the unassuming peasants? Buns? The same thing as in Triangle of Sadness, also from this year.

    I surmise that you can't expect a lot of nuance knowing that the movie is born from one of the writers visiting such a restaurant in Norway, being anxious and confused, and then judging that it's all actually pretentious and a try-hard sham for the rich elite that don't know anything about gastronomy and should be mocked as such.
  • redbeardceltic - 13 January 2023
    A dark comedy satire reflecting the nation today
    From the start and the trailer, I think many will realize this is not a typical film. It means that you cannot watch it as a story narrative but understand it is a representation, a satire. And what is that satire?

    Most people jump right into the usual cliches; classism, socialism vs capitalism, even the film's direct mentioning of the service industry vs the customers.

    However, it is actually much more obvious than that. It isn't classism per say, as the chef himself is of higher class. Yes, he did also admit the restaurant was part of the problem. It is not about socialism or capitalism, wealth was never brought up. It is not specifically about servers and takers either, though it is heavily influenced.

    The premise of the film is about losing passion and purpose. The chef's suicidal tendency and the plot of the film was about losing his purpose, his joy and desire to fulfill that purpose. This was reflected also in his conversation with Margot, who also felt that way. And once more with the actor, as the chef called him out as someone who has lost the passion for acting.

    Why is this not about classism, capitalism, etc... b/c the ending, Margot called it all out. She said, the chef's one purpose, only purpose was to create food which a customer might enjoy. He failed. That was the whole premise and whole point.

    Why did the chef fail? Because of the society's tendency to pressure, to please. This again was stated early and carried to the end. When you try to please the impossible, you end up losing your purpose, joy, and desire. This is why chef invited these people, of all he blame as the "cause" of sucking out his soul.

    The ending is straight to the point. Margot did something unexpected. She told the truth. Everyone is afraid, they're afraid of the chef. Why? Because they're afraid of offending. Margot never liked the food from the start. She wanted to send it back, and was stopped. In the end, at the face of death, she stood up and told the chef the truth, she did not like his food and she has the courage to send it back.

    When the chef asked her what she wanted to eat, she remember the photo she saw in his room. The ONE time chef was ever smiling, back when he started it all as a greasy teen, back when he knew the joy of his purpose as a chef, to serve the food and not about pleasing people. She reminded him of that. Remember what he said earlier through each course, the pain subsides but still some remains. She took away his pain, but for a brief moment... but that moment is enough.

    To sum up what is the point of the movie. The restaurant is America, what it has become today. It has become a nation bent on pleasing the unpleasable. The people no longer owns the nation, like the chef, but they are owned instead by wealthy "angel investors." And like the chef, including the rest of the staff, the joy and soul, the purpose of this nation has been eroded away.

    The cheeseburger. It is what America "use to be." When the chef was making and and cooking it, joy was restored into him as he remembered what it means to be a chef, how it all started. Many today, when we look upon the time of the past, the 1950s and 60s, we remember what we use to be, the joy and purpose of being an American.


    Additional Details:

    Why did the chef allow Margot to leave?

    Margot acted like a true customer. Remember early on she told Tyler "You are the customer, you are paying him to serve you."

    Americans have forgotten that our politicians work for us, like the people in the restaurant. Margot re-established the customer and server relationship, earning the chef's respect. A customer is always right and a chef cannot deny her request to take the food to go.

    Who are these people in the restaurant?

    They represent a major aspect of the nation. The chef mentioned they would've succeeded if they tried to escape. However, they complained, they know they were going to die, but did nothing. This can go into details such as the old man represented lust, the young men greed, the critic is pride, Tyler is gluttony, etc...

    The bread scene?

    This scene is their version of the emperor's new clothes. There is no bread, no food, but they all pretended it was a dish and went along. Margot was the only one who spoke the truth. There is no food. Again reflecting a nation today, where many are just going with the groupthink, even though there is no bread.
  • cvcxtvdq - 12 January 2023
    Eat your way into what's being served
    The menu, I liked this film a lot and it's very difficult to review. Why?

    Because of the very thin line between Horror and Thriller that's being served. Somehow the movie is focused on enticing a feeling of fear (horror), but the movie also generates suspense and excitement. The presence of black comedy, mainly because of the interaction between the characters, softens the fear and/or suspense effect the movie is serving you.

    For watching this movie succesfully, so that you end up with good review, my advice would be to put yourself in the restaurant without a certain expectation/choice. If 'the menu' is a 'hamburger', just watch the movie with an attitude 'I want a hamburger (the menu)' instead of 'I want a hamburger (the menu) well done (thriller) or medium rare (horror)'. The film itself will serve on different ways.

    Tastelessly watching this movie while getting absorbed by the atmosphere, what's being served, made this movie a very good watch.
  • Drawmort - 9 January 2023
    Bring the Michelin Star! ...I mean, the Oscar!!
    I'm not a connoisseur of the technicalities of the fine dining industry, but if I were, I'd only say that this film would definitely be worthy of a Michelin star.

    Those who have already read my previous reviews know that, in my opinion, one of the strong points to determine the general and absolute quality of a film, is the very particularity of the story. Well, this story and its script are a delicacy that gives the finest palates a unique pleasure that will not only be worthy of being remembered as one of the best satires of 2022, but also of its decade.

    Ralph Fiennes' performance is phenomenal. The production design is in perfect proportion. The soundtrack is a delight. The photography, outstanding.

    Unfortunately, there are negatives. Few, but there are. Some are even mere trifles. The overall performances are only good, except for the aforementioned Fiennes. The clothing is fine, but it could have been better. Finally the visual effects are limited by our time. Fire has always been one of the stumbling blocks in VFX studios.

    Now, if we forget to analyze every detail and give ourselves completely to what is offered to us with this movie -as it should be- it will surely be close to perfection for many. Therefore, and to close, The Menu is fully recommended for all movie lovers.
  • carasoundsbigpro - 9 January 2023
    Who are we as the consumers of art qualified to review Artistic Genius? Because we paid for it? Because it did or did not trigger our pleasure points as expected while consuming? Is it not time for the reviewers to be reviewed? What is true art but ministry. What is true ministry but prophecy. This film is True Art. Receive its ministry with gratitude and savor its prophetic warning...Who are we as the consumers of art qualified to review Artistic Genius? Because we paid for it? Because it did or did not trigger our pleasure points as expected while consuming? Is it not time for the reviewers to be reviewed? What is true art but ministry. What is true ministry but prophecy. This film is True Art. Consume its ministry and savor its prophetic warning... warning... warning...
  • nmottel - 8 January 2023
    Train wreck
    Silly me for looking forward to seeing this movie, it was awful. I liked the premise, a fancy dinner for fancy people in a fancy restaurant on an island. Forgive me but from the very start I was put off by the exotic looks of the actress portraying Margot. At first I thought her face was being shot through a type of filter to exaggerate the size of her eyes and sharpness of other facial features. All of her close-ups were detrations from the story itself. Initially the restaurant guests experience the extreme chef either as a food genius or ridiculous madman. Madman he is as we learn with "The Mess" course. The chef is out for revenge on all twelve diners andn will be taking his devoted staff along for the ride. The film doesn't just turn dark, it turns stupid and that is a crime in cinema. Do NOT waste your time on this horrible movie.
  • Elcid_Asaei - 8 January 2023
    A dish best served charred
    A film equivalent of a bold, deconstructed dish that fills the senses with flavours so deep that they cut deep both physically and emotionally, and after a refreshing mouth cleaner, leave us to to reflect on a menu that is as empty as it is full of reflection and self-reflection. To begin, my first viewing of this mouthful left me empty and recoiling, as I considered it too on the nose, to O. T. T, the equivalent of a dish that is more pleasing to the eye than to the soul, and I dismissed it as immature, didactic and pretentious. But like all great arts,!6dishes that are judged too harshly, my return lead me to re-evaluate my my own pretensions and prejudices, and thereby like a revolving plate I came around 360 degrees to realise this is indeed a post-modern masterpiece that is structured in the very same way it tells its story, like an Eaton mess, it is an experiential film, an experiment holding a deconstructed mirror to human fragility, human inequality, human absurdity; a dish served bloody and cremated, peppered with uncomfortable truths that we all have to swallow, one way or another, whether we like it or not.
  • kirasabin - 8 January 2023
    Some of these reviews are ironic
    I understand that not every situation in this movie is believable, but it's a satire, and it achieves its goal of recognizing the toxic qualities within the artistic world. Great performances, fun dialogue, good amount of laughs, and I was touched by the ending.

    It's a suspenseful movie with not a ton of gore which is either liked or disliked. It's very on the nose, but doesn't insult the audience, and it has a satisfying web of character relations. If you're looking for a fun, very controlled paced, thriller with witty commentary and insightful real-life viewpoints that still has the charm of a comedy, then this is a perfect movie for you.

    Highly recommend - wish I could watch again for the first time.