I am going to keep this one simple, I have absolutely no idea how to classify this film, but I am going to try. The Menu is kind of a Black Comedy, but at the same time it is kind of a psychological thriller and then at others it is a well-crafted message to the critics and audiences of the world.
So, if you are unfamiliar with The Menu, it is a movie that follows a group of pretentious foodies, from various high-class backgrounds, who are attending an exclusive dining experience, which leaves them isolated on an island. Once there they discover all is not as it seems, for the head chef and his loyal staff want to teach these men and women a lesson they will never forget.
The plot to The Menu is kind of out there, but what really drew me in was the sheer talent involved with this project. When I say this film had a stacked cast, I really mean it. First off, the truly intense and intimidating head chef is played by the always brilliant Ralph Fiennes, but not only that we had Nicholas Hoult, John Leguizamo, Hong Chau, Janet McTeer and the massively underrated Aimee Carrero who was an integral if not understated key player in this movie. Finally, we have Anya Taylor-Joy who shines as the very reserved Margot. I do not want to say much more about any of the performances because they are all key to the characters in the movie.
The Menu was also directed by Mark Mylod who until recently had only worked on three movies, including the utterly ridiculous Ali G Indahouse, but he has done a lot of TV, Including some of my favourite episodes of Shameless, Entourage and Game of Thrones – as well as these heavy weight shows he has also worked with the comedy duo of Reeves and Mortimer on multiple occasions. It is with this unique background that Mylod would have been one of the few directors who could have made this film work. And of course I would be remiss if I did not mention that two of The Menu’s producers were Adam McKay and Will Ferrell.
Finally, before I close this one out, I will give a quick shout out to Colin Stetson. Colin was the composer for this movie, and he does an amazing job building up the tension without it ever becoming melodramatic. You may not know Stetson’s work but if you have ever seen Blue Caprice, Hereditary and the latest iteration of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre. He is also a frequent collaborator with some of my favorite artists such as Tom Waits, Bon Iver, Feist and Arcade Fire.
In many ways this film reminds me of Chef, and no it is not because they are both about food. It is because they are both films that take a shot at the audiences of the world and stand up for the artists. It is a really unique watch and a film I look forward to seeing again. That and the food did look absolutely gorgeous, especially the second last course.