10 Movies Like ‘The Menu’ | TheReviewGeek Recommends

The Menu is the new hot thing on the block. Mark Mylod’s observant, absurdist satire serves as a cautionary tale for the decaying state of things in the world, and the service industry in particular. Debauchery in the dining circles is washed with words like opportunity, lifestyle, and a terrible want for perfection. Exploitation is veiled under the decrypt promise of new beginnings and chapters toward something meaningful. But keeping all that aside, the most enjoyable part about The Menu is its sharp, unabashedly deadpan humour.

Although it is its own film, The Menu has a lot of similarities to many other think pieces thematically. Given how much people have enjoyed the film, we have decided to come up with a list of films like The Menu. Hopefully, we are adding some meaning to your experience of watching movies as well!

Boiling Point (2022)

Boiling Point perhaps is the most realistic take on the changing paradigms in the service industry lately.  Philip Barantini’s narrative marries the hottest restaurant in London with the busiest calendar night to give is exclusive behind the scenes in the kitchen. For an outsider, the insights are quite surreal to watch and difficult to process. Such are the stakes that even a single mistake can cost one their job. Chaos, anxiety, and the dread of something going wrong to define Boiling Point, which is miraculously shot all in one shot.

Steven Graham gives a totally committed performance, one that perhaps deserved more attention and praise. He is at the centre of everything that flows in Boiling Point’s kitchen and never shies away from taking responsibility to do something. He is chef extraordinaire, like Chef Slowik from The Menu, but perhaps with a more sedate existential crisis. Both films offer a hitting peek into the toxic culture in such places where the customer is the king.

Parasite (2019)

Eating the rich was the fantasy that brought the creators of The Menu to the final film. Dissing the one per cent has suddenly become a trendy subject for filmmakers to infuse their creativity with. Parasite, back in 2019, awoke the conscience that has since produced some great films. Director Bong Joon-ho’s unmistakable style and craft elevate Parasite as more than just a film about the class divide. The core story is in itself a work of art and the story constantly unfolds. Bong makes sure that there is at least something there for everyone, even if they do not get his universal statement.

Like The Menu, the more scrumptious parts of Parasite are allegorical and representational. Although there is a slight difference in the intention behind violence in the third act, both films are comparable for sharing the same thematic fabric. Parasite is a bit more complete, technically, but it is definitely a smart choice to watch after The Menu.

Triangle of Sadness (2022)

Besides The Menu, Triangle of Sadness was one of the most talked about films in this vein from 2022. It is perhaps even more so serious-minded than The Menu, without those moments of reprieve. Ruben Ostlund makes his Engloish-directorial debut lavishly setting his film universe against themes and symbols that have become synonymous with ambition and aspiration.

In his own words, he summed up beautifully the underlying themes of the Triangle of Sadness: “appearance as capital” and “beauty as currency”. There is even more juxtaposition of modern positions on such issues in the film, making it a complete package with moving and ostensible characters. 

Bodies Bodies Bodies (2022)

Halina Reijn’s English feature debut is a twisty subversion of the slasher/whodunnit genre. Although it promises a blend of the two, the end product is a uniquely differentiated story that also has marked insights into race, sexuality, and class critique. All of this is bundled into a genuinely funny satirical fluff-ball of story and characters from across the spectrum. David’s (Pete Davidson) father’s mansion and a “hurricane party” serve as the setting and context. Since it is a bunch of 20-somethings, the vibe is very amateurish and out there.

The beauty of the writing is how the dialogues written in modern lingo with words like “triggered” and “toxic” convey a deeper reflection of American society. And to an extent, the West. The title refers to the party game the group plays when David is murdered by someone and also to the literal meaning of it. Props to Rachel Sennot who honestly has the best lines, and is by far the most interesting character. Bodies, Bodies, Bodies is first-rate entertainment with plenty of laughs and a self-aware artistic core making it a compelling combination.

Ready or Not (2019)

Although Chef Slowik was not really playing a “game” as such, one can definitely see it as one. Samara Weaving’s Grace comes wedded as a beautiful wife into the le Domas family expecting warmth and happiness. It is her first night after the big event. But instead, she is thrown into playing a cutting-edge game of life and death. And that is not a metaphor at all. Literally, what Grace does next determines whether she lives or dies. What survival situation comes without killing? You see a lot of that violence manifest in Ready or Not through the constant clashes Grace has with family members.

The Menu’s similar style of invitation and giving those who arrive a completely different experience than what they had hoped for is something you can enjoy in Ready or Not as well. We might have a sequel soon so it is a good time to get your first watch in.

Glass Onion (2022)

A tech billionaire invites his old gang of friends (sic), a former ally he Social Network’d, and the best detective in the whole wide world, to his private island to solve a murder mystery. Count me in! And no, Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery, now streaming on Netflix, is not based on Elon Musk. Although, one could see why it could. This Christmas has definitely brought some charm to your screens. Attractive, flawed, and morally corrupt people once again assemble in a single, isolated location on Rian Johnson’s command and under Benoit Blanc’s hawk-like eyes to solve a murder, with them bringing the promise of deliverance from mediocrity. And they certainly do.

Johnson’s endless wit, Craig’s charm, and finely tuned performances from a blockbuster ensemble ensure that you walk away a happy customer from Glass Onion. There is some A24 deviousness in how the plot comes to life. Blanc’s detective work is enthralling and riveting to watch.

The Last Supper (1995)

Cameron Diaz ruled the 1990s. There weren’t many high-profile actresses with such beauty, brawns, and appeal back then. Having Diaz in the film meant sure-shot success. But when you get such an inviting concept like The Last Supper does, things are even better as a viewer. Like The Menu, the jarring tonal change happens due to a clash of ideologies. The left cannot bear to stand the bizarre and amusing statements by the right on politics and socioeconomic dynamics of society. One taste of blood for our five and a realization dawns upon them to continue.

You get to experience a similar tension as a viewer like The Menu. Although the dread is not as strong, the vibes are very similar. The Last Supper’s satirical quotient is equally impactful and definitely gives you food for thought. Its revolting plot and timely appreciation of relevant themes make it a timeless watch.

The Hunt (2020)

The games of the rich are reaching an extreme level in cinematic depictions these days. It is perhaps all those years of frustration and indignation coming out in this showcasing. The Hunt feels like an episode of Black Mirror – delivered to us straight by messengers from the future. Its scary reality sees twelve nobodies compete to save their lives as they have no other option. But more so than being a horror flick, The Hunt has sharp comedic elements like The Menu and leans toward that genre in particular. Believe me, it is more of an enjoyable ride with authentic laughs than a melancholic, zero-sum game. It is also that but perhaps the former takes more of the screen time.

The Hunt is more than meets the eye. A couple of rewatches at least are required to fully grasp the breath and length of creator Craig Zobel’s vision. His commentary has an edgy assimilation of the American way of thinking – be it social, economic, or political. The Hunt’s satirical tirade goes over the top on a few occasions but never spoils its entertaining offering.

Would You Rather (2012)

Torture standards in films do not have a ceiling. If the creator has the aptitude, they will push the boundaries to no extent. Would You Rather gently tests the waters with its experimentation style. Even though in hindsight most of them are misses than hits, the film offers a fresh perspective on the subject matter. The diners at Hawthorn endured a lot of similar torture at the hands of the chef and workers but perhaps did not have a way out at all like Iris does in Would You Rather.

The famous party game turns into a battle for survival where Iris faces the toughest of challenges to save her brother. These insulting games of the rich, making the poor and needy compete, instantly remind one of Squid Games as well. Would You Rather’s ending might not sit well with the majority of people but it should not stop you from giving it a try.

Cabin in the Woods (2011)

No one expected “that” to happen when they went into catch Cabin in the Woods. This cinematic twist and treatment of the story are one of the smartest, cleverest quips of the craft in this genre. Its humour elements stand out in the face of oblivion and the destruction of the world.

Chris Hemsworth, Kristen Connolly, and Anna Hutchison star among others as a group of friends who spend a vacation in the cabin in the woods but discover an averse truth about the place. Gradually, we descend into a whole new set of rules underneath the cabin; a haunting universe of mercenaries, apparitions, and your worst nightmares. The overarching end to all things is an even damning statement from the makers.

So there we have it, our 10 Movie picks to keep you busy after watching The Menu.

What do you think of our picks? Do you agree? Are there any notable omissions? Let us know in the comments below!

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