It's about time we foodies got our own horror movie

Those are the movies I like to see in the theater- the visual extravaganzas

I’m seeing this in about 3 hours. Full review to follow.


I don’t see this as a horror movie, but don’t forget the oldie “Who is killing the Great Chefs of Europe”

My partner and I saw The Menu Thanksgiving Day, as the sole occupants of the theater.

@Bob_Hutcheson is correct that The Menu isn’t really a horror movie. Rather, it’s a VERY darkly comic social satire with a few horror elements thrown in. It’s not scary, but there are a few violent scenes and a modest amount of blood, if those sorts of things are concerning to you.

If you’ve watched the trailer, you know the basic premise. We are at a VERY exclusive restaurant, Hawthorne, located on an island off the coast of… somewhere. The patrons (only 12) have taken a chartered boat to the island, and there is no way back without it. Hawthorne is presided over by Chef Slowik (Ralph Fiennes), and is a very ‘conceptual’ place, ala’ Vespertine, in L.A. In one early scene, Chef Slowik gives a monologue about how bread has, for centuries, been the food of the common people, but since his guests are all the wealthy elite, they are not common, so they get “No Bread”, a plate describing the bread they WOULD have gotten (an “artisanal whole grain loaf” etc) and unaccompanied accompaniments that WOULD have gone on the bread. As each dish is presented, we are shown a “Chef’s Table”-like shot of the food, with oh-so-artfully written descriptions, which become more and more amusing as the ‘courses’ get less and less edible.

Each course of the meal gets stranger and more sinister, as guests’ secrets are spilled and things turn inhospitable.

On the one hand, the film is having a grand time poking fun at extreme foodie culture, and a way of thinking and talking about food that lots of us here will recognize in themselves, even if we then quickly murmur “Well, sure, but I’m not THAT bad…” On the other, Chef’s Slowik’s staff display an… UNUSUAL devotion to their mad genius boss. The film never REALLY delves into what might make a crew of 30+ highly skilled professionals show such loyalty in the face of complete insanity, and I would have liked to see this explored a little more.

The performances are great. Anya Taylor Joy has a magnetic screen presence. Fiennes is 100% believable as an embittered artist, so full of self loathing that he resorts to murder. And the movie is gorgeously photographed.

If you like your satire with a soupcon of “Fuck the Rich” and a non trivial amount of violence, you’ll have a grand time. I certainly did.


I enjoyed it as well. I think the satiric aspect of it fell short but the humour made it a pleasure. It is one of those films I’d be tempted to call a confection: beautiful sets, fantastic performances by all involved, but the commentary lacked depth.

As for the commentary, the thing I think that has lingered with me the longest is the way in which workers not only sacrifice themselves for the system, but they cannot imagine their existence beyond it.

It also really made me want a cheeseburger. I haven’t stopped craving one.

A ‘confection’ is exactly the right word. Beautiful. Tasty. Relatively inconsequential in the grand scheme but fun to have experienced.

I’m cheap and usually only “splurge” for movies in the theatre when cinematography is a vital part of the experience - think LOTR and such, not generally for dark comedies/conversational films.

You convinced me now that I will go out to see it tomorrow. I avoided reading any detailed reviews so far :slight_smile:

I hope you enjoy it. And if not, well, you’ll know to judge my cinematic tastes with a full salt shaker. It won’t win any oscars, but the partner and I were happily amused for the length of its runtime. I consider anything more than that a unexpected bonus. Please do let us know what you think!

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If I don’t look at my phone FKNA “watch” during the movie, that’s usually a good sign.

Low expectations is my groove, too :wink:

So, has anyone ever seen George Franju’s 1949 documentary about a French abattoir, Blood of the Beasts (Le sang des betes) ? I think it qualifies. ( You can see it on YouTube)

Finally watched it yesterday, and liked it a lot. 5/5

i loved this movie!

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Now that at least a few of us have seen it, I’d love to discuss it if anyone has anything more to say. For those that haven’t quite gotten to it, remember that the board’s editor DOES provide a spoiler blur if you mark it properly. Don’t ruin it for those that still want to go see.

End disclaimer

I really REALLY like how, out of all the terrible people in the movie, the most reprehensible wasn’t the murderous chef, but Tyler (Nicholas Hoult). A hopeless dilletante wanna-be, he buys all the expensive gear, reads all the reviews, watches the videos, and never actually DOES anything, and is willing to invite some stranger along to get murdered, just to meet his ‘idol’. His little dish, “Tyler’s Bullshit” was just the :cook: :kiss:

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Yessss! I hated him the most, and loved when he was expected to cook. I really enjoyed the course descriptions - especially the final course :wink:

I also thought it was filmed very well, and I would’ve had a serious craving for the cheeseburger, had we not had one the previous night, as well as a slider version just before the film – cuz you def don’t want to watch this hungry.

I wish The Wife had been fleshed out ever so slightly, but perhaps that couple’s story line wouldn’t have added that much more to it. The finance bros were SPOT ON.

Lastly, THANK YOU for introducing me to the spoiler function. I wish that were available IRL and elsewhere :rofl:

Also, absolutely LOVED Hong Chau in this.


Hong Chau was :raised_hands::raised_hands::raised_hands:

And I left with the same craving.

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Thanks for not spoiling it;

I haven’t seen it yet, but can you point me to the blurring directions? Last time I tried it I couldn’t get it to work.

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@shrinkrap , @hungryonion put it on the Food Media board for those recapping Top Chef, etc.


"Now streaming on HBO Max ".

I watched it last week, loved it.