Director: Mark Mylod Run Time: 106 min. Rating: R Release Year: 2022
Starring: Anya Taylor-Joy, Hong Chau, Janet McTeer, Nicholas Hoult, Ralph Fiennes
A couple, Margot (Anya Taylor-Joy) and Tyler (Nicholas Hoult), travel to a coastal island in the Pacific Northwest to eat at an exclusive restaurant, Hawthorn, where the reclusive, globally celebrated Chef Julian Slowik (Ralph Fiennes) has prepared a lavish tasting menu for select special guests. Joining the couple are three young, already inebriated tech bros, Bryce (Rob Yang), Soren (Arturo Castro) and Dave (Mark St. Cyr), an older wealthy couple and repeat clients, Anne and Richard (Judith Light and Reed Birney), renowned restaurant critic Lillian Bloom (Janet McTeer) and her slavish magazine editor Ted (Paul Adelstein), and a famous middle-aged movie star (John Leguizamo) with his assistant Felicity (Aimee Carrero). Hosted by the immaculately dressed front of house staff led by general Elsa (Hong Chau), the evening unfolds with increasing tension at each of the guest tables as secrets are revealed and unexpected courses are served. With wild and violent events occurring, Slowik’s motivation begins to rattle the diners as it becomes increasingly apparent that his elaborate menu is designed to catalyze to a shocking finale.
Filmmaker Mark Mylod is a British television and film director and executive producer. He is known for his work on the television series ”Game of Thrones” and ”Shameless” as well as “Succession” for which he received an Emmy for producing.
“When I first started to direct, I wanted that theatrical career. But my early movies weren’t very good, to be honest, so I had a lot of growing up to do,” Mylod said. The script for The Menu, by Seth Reiss and Will Tracy, “had a unique tone that I knew would be hard to find. It would be easy to skew, either too dark or too comedic. It required a unique, bitting edge and that was sort of the unique, creative challenge for all of us.”
“At the risk of sounding hokey: it’s a new spin on a familiar flavor, like pickle ice cream or a chocolate hamburger. The Menu lands its joke about the Chef Table-ification of cuisine while also finding nuance in its “capitalism is a plague” messaging.” ~ Esther Zuckerman, Vanity Fair
“The audience is immersed in a culinary experience that is masterfully crafted by Chef Slowik and his eerily obedient line of cooks. Even as the comedic horror takes its twists and turns, The Menu stays true to one thing: the art of fine dining.” ~ Christine Nbemeneh, Black Girl Nerds