“The Menu” – Dark. Hilarious. Delectable.

“Just go with the flow. It’s gonna be magical.”

Story: Margot is the plus-one to gustatorial fanboy Nick’s super-chic, super-exclusive, dinner on the beautiful island of Don’t Go There Girl. She’s not impressed with foamy this and freeze-dried that, but hey, a free dinner is cool, right? Well, the restaurant – and the elusive chef that heads it – are planning on delivering the ultimate experience this evening. Any chance of a doggy bag…and a way off this island?

Genre I’d put it in: Aggressively Delicious Satire
Release Date: 2022
Remake, Sequel, Based-On, or Original: Echoes many class struggle stories, but this one’s original.

Gotta say: “Hilarious. Dark. Delectable.”? Oh shit. I sound like one of those elitist snobs that went to this restaurant. That can’t be good. Luckily this movie is. Fans of the absurd? Of macabe humor? You’ve found your favorite thing of the season.

Known for his darkly comedic work on Succession, Shameless, and Game of Thrones, director Mark Mylod gives us a story that’s structured well, and then lets his performers go for it, as their characters deal with the evening’s festivities. Writers Seth Reiss and Will Tracy (best known for their work on late-night shows and The Onion) balance the horror and humor with sly winks at the audience, never spelling things out for us, but letting us discover their dark playfulness for ourselves. There are moments so deliciously, comically, evil that I almost stood up and applauded a story-beat a time or two. These three creators whipped up a helluva treat, from the moment we meet the snobby elites, to the way each “chapter” of the meal/story is introduced with a “menu card”, to the unraveling of the restaurant and all within it.

The cast is basically surrounds the repartee between Anya Taylor-Joy’s Margot and Ralph Fiennes’ Chef Slowik, but each gives believable, realistic performances. So much so, I was really hoping for a few of the egotistical douche-canoes to get theirs in a hideous way. But ah ah ah, spoilers darling. I won’t tell…but let’s just say any and all comeuppances are, shall we say, chef’s kiss. Shout out to Judith Light for simply being present (and, of course, being amazing) as a rich socialite, and John Leguizamo as a grasping, self-satisfied actor, hoping to rekindle his stardom. Meanwhile Taylor-Joy and Fiennes are electric, each bouncing off the other with graceful, chess-like maneuvering (Queen’s Gambit pun unintended but let’s roll with it.) The fact that the whole cast look like they’re truly enjoying being able to sink their teeth into these roles is the icing on the cake. Fine. That’s all the cooking puns I’ll use.

There were moments where I was the only one in the theater that was laughing. That is because I am a dark and twisted soul. So if you’re like me? Run to the multiplex. You’ll have a blast. Sneak in some fun nibbles. If you’re not? Remember that this is supposed to be a humorous, if dark, look at how the haves and have-nots differ, and how they may be similar in ways one may not immediately grok. It’s worth the look-see.

#Protip: I don’t know about you, but a smashed cheeseburger with homemade fries sounds really good right about now. Foam and fluff ain’t it y’all. So here. Have at it.

About Denise

Professional nerd. Lover of licorice.
This entry was posted in 7 Pieces Of, In Horror and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

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