Last night my wife and I were talking about what to watch and she tells me about a horror film called “The Menu.” I’m going to be honest… I don’t really like horror. I don’t have any problems with it but I never think I want to watch a horror movie. As I came to discover, this isn’t your average horror movie.
The movie is about a Chef, Julian Slowik, who runs a high end restaurant catering to the rich and famous. The kind of restaurant the average joe couldn’t afford. He’s become disillusioned with his work. He and his staff basically make a murder-suicide pact. He invites diners that he considers ruined both his life and his craft for a special dinner where no one will make it out alive.
What I really love about this movie is its not your standard horror film. It doesn’t do jump scares and there’s only light blood and gore. Its mostly psychological. It does a wonderful job of making the audience root for the villain by the end. I say that, but its not that there’s a traditional good and bad dynamic going on, everyone’s bad to varying degrees. It’s a movie where the viewer is able to simultaneously empathize with the characters and also dislike them enough so when their demise comes it feels satisfying. It's also spattered with humor throughout which I really appreciated.
The cinematography is beautiful. They show dishes and murders that are works of art and visually stunning.
I would normally have a discussion of what I didn’t like about the movie. For this review I don’t have anything but one thought. There is one character I’m not sure deserved to be at the dinner, and its not the obvious one. There’s a movie star in attendance with his assistant. The chef gives his reasons for what he’s doing in the movie but I’m not sure the assistants presence was justified. It is said in the movie that he doesn’t offer single seatings so she may have just been attrition. What do you think?
Five stars, two thumbs up, would recommend.