Film Review – The Menu (2022)

Title – The Menu (2022) 

Director – Mark Mylod (The Big White) 

Cast – Anya Taylor-Joy, Ralph Fiennes, Nicholas Hoult, John Leguizamo, Hong Chau

Plot – A prestigious dinner on a remote island in a restaurant run by the renowned Chef Slowik (Fiennes) turns into something more than young couple Margot (Taylor-Joy) and the food loving Tyler (Hoult) bargained for. 

“You don’t think Chef is mad at me, do you?”

Review by Eddie on 25/11/2022

One of 2022’s more kooky and left of centre Hollywood releases, Mark Mylod’s The Menu is a devilishly put together dish that is sporadically brilliant, sometimes mildly amusing and other times lacking, in what adds up to a meal that is easy to consume but one’s that substance doesn’t linger long in the memory, despite Mylod’s efforts to ensure his film is an often unpredictable and wild journey.

Produced by comedic heavyweights Adam McKay and Will Ferrell, The Menu is a strange bedfellow of horror, comedy and thriller that allows its talented cast a playing field for them to go wild in, which results in one of the most entertaining Ralph Fiennes performances in years, another impressive Anya Taylor-Joy lead performance and Nicholas Hoult at his most gloriously detestable in a role that is against type for the well-liked actor. 

Best viewed with as little insight into the finer plot elements as possible, all one needs to know is that Taylor-Joy and Hoult’s Margot and Tyler fancy dinner trip on a remote island in a restaurant run by world famous Chef Slowik (the scenery chewing Fiennes) is the type of degustation dinner with a difference, providing a genre mash-up that may thrill and bore various viewers in equal measure as we steadily begin to understand where our evening on Slowik’s island paradise (Hell?) is heading.

Broken into segments that relate to its multi-course menu from the hands of Slowik’s guidance, The Menu is a wicked little affair that is sure to get foodies razzed up in many various forms and early on with the mysterious elements still in full force and our characters slowly coming into focus, Mylod’s film operates at a very high level, but as the puzzle begins to take shape and motivations and backstories more final, The Menu does begin to become more of a running through the motions affair that you feel misses the mark from where it appears to be boiling away at early on. 

An at all times well-filmed, scripted (some of Slowik’s cut-downs and comebacks are the years most enjoyable pieces of screenwriting in a major Hollywood film) and acted film, once we are aware of what has motivated Slowik’s particular new angle on a dining experience and hatred of S’mores and begin to ask questions of certain characters decisions and actions, The Menu loses much of its initially appealing flavour, becoming a meal worthy of consumption but not a must try dish one might have hoped for early on. 

Final Say – 

Sometimes hilarious, sometimes shocking and mostly entertaining, The Menu is a neatly put together Hollywood oddity that successfully combines multiple genres but loses steam the longer it’s left cooking, making it a fun feature dish but not one that can be regarded as an outstanding one. 

3 cheeseburgers out of 5 

2 responses to “Film Review – The Menu (2022)

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