10 Movies like The Menu you must watch. Keep this list handy and add these recommendations to your watch list.
Mark Mylod‘s darkly comedic, social satire The Menu has been gaining a lot of momentum past its theatrical release, to the point that it even dethroned Glass Onion as the most-streamed movie in the US after hitting HBO Max on January 3. The film stars Ralph Fiennes, Anya Taylor-Joy, and Nicholas Hoult, with The Whale‘s Hong Chau not going unnoticed either. If you are one of those who discovered the film recently (or even if you are not) and you are looking for similarly-toned movies to watch, you are in the right place! Here are 10 movies like The Menu.
10 Movies like The Menu you must watch
2019’s Best Picture winner is the ultimate social satire in recent memory. Much like The Menu, the less you know going in, the better. Directed by Bong Joon Ho, it follows the low-income Kim family as they try to upend the social differences in South Korea by infiltrating the Parks, a wealthy family that looks over the shoulders of everyone around them.
Mimi Cave’s directorial debut follows Daisy Edgar-Jones’ Noa, who, tired of modern dating rules, meets Steve (Sebastian Stan) in a grocery store and gives him her number. After a few dates together, and against Noa’s friend’s advice, the two of them go on a weekend getaway, where she finds out about Steve’s darkest secret.
A step up from The Menu‘s thriller aspect and a step down from its satire themes, Fresh‘s trailer already hints that a food-related twist is coming as the second act starts, but you’ll have to watch it to find out what it is exactly.
Get Out (2017)
Fresh‘s plot synopsis might be reminiscent of another, critically acclaimed movie from recent years. Jordan Peele’s feature directorial debut, which earned him a Best Original Screenplay Academy Award, and nominations for Best Director and Best Picture, was one of the most talked-about movies of 2017. Heavily inspired by Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner, but with a dark twist in store, it follows Daniel Kaluuya’s Chris, who is meeting his girlfriend’s parents for the first time. He is quite worried, though, over Rose (Allison Williams) telling his white family she is dating a Black man.
It leans on the thriller side as much as Fresh does, and raises to the levels of social satire that The Menu deals with, essentially becoming the best of both worlds.
American Psycho (2000)
Staying in the world of thrillers with crime elements heavily featured in the plot, American Psycho features one of Christian Bale’s most iconic performances. He plays Patrick Bateman, an investment banker by day and a serial killer by night, who in the film goes down and down the rabbit hole created by his own madness. A reminder that everyone has a darker side to them, American Psycho may not share a lot of common ground with The Menu, besides heavily criticizing the upper class and weaving in certain thriller elements, but it is a fascinating 100-minute watch.
Triangle of Sadness (2022)
Going back now to proper social satires, Triangle of Sadness is last year’s Palm d’Or winner by director Ruben Östlund. It follows a group of rich, young people on a vacation together aboard a yacht, where they will look over the shoulders of the employees and try to survive all sorts of challenges that come their way in the middle of the water. It is arguably one of 2022’s most similar movies to The Menu, as it heavily criticizes the rich’s habits and overall ignorance of whatever is going on around them.
Modern Times (1936)
We are completely changing tunes with this one, but if we are to talk about dark, satirical comedies, we have to go back to the beginning and mention Charlie Chaplin’s iconic take on the Great Depression and how the industrialized world got rid of the middle class, while still benefitting the rich. Besides its many commentaries on the times it was made in, it also was the last time Chaplin played his recognizable character, the Tramp, and it was the first time we heard the actor’s voice on film too.
The Platform (2019)
Another non-English-language film on the list, this Spanish science fiction film from director Galder Gaztelu-Urrutia is set inside a vertical prison where each cell is on a different level. The premise is simple. Food is passed down from cell to cell, and prisoners have two minutes a day to eat, which means that people on the upper floors will have plenty to choose from while leaving the scraps for people on the lowest floors.
The arguably too-in-the-nose metaphor is handled beautifully by the film, which, much like The Menu, heavily criticizes the rich’s way of thinking about everyone beneath their status, and also puts food at the very center of the story.
Boiling Point (2021)
Philip Barantini’s anxiety-inducing thriller follows Andy Jones (Stephen Graham) as the head chef of a restaurant during a high-pressure evening that starts with a disappointing Health and Safety rating and includes a wedding proposal and a visit by a food critic. Filmed in one single shot, it makes the penultimate episode of The Bear feel like a children’s game. It may not hold a lot of thematic similarities with The Menu, but it definitely explores at length what it takes to run a restaurant.
Going back to more dialed-down, restaurant-related films, Jon Favreau’s last film before going to work for Disney is a sweet story about a chef who was forced to start from scratch operating a food truck after being fired from the restaurant he was working. The large ensemble includes Sofía Vergara, John Leguizamo, Scarlett Johansson, and Oliver Platt, among others. Favreau wrote, directed, produced, and starred in Chef in between high-budget films, in an attempt to go back to the basics of what he loved about filmmaking.
Bones and All (2022)
If we are talking about social commentaries that involve eating human flesh, we really can’t ignore Luca Guadagnino’s latest endeavor. Bones and All is an absolute masterclass of writing and directing, and the ultimate example of a movie pulling off gruesome sequences that will stay with you for a long time with some of the most emotional and human moments that films had to offer in 2022. It stars Luca Guadagnino and Taylor Russell in the lead roles, but also includes an iconic performance from Mark Rylance.
Do you have any other recommendations for movies like The Menu? Let us know!
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