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‘The Menu’ Cast And Character Guide: Everything You Need To Know About The Characters

If you are a fan of food, fantasy and, horror, “The Menu” is the perfect film for you. Directed by Mark Mylod, “The Menu” tries to marry the genres of satire with black comedy, which morphs into horror/ thriller. The film provides sharp commentary on classism and the unequal distribution of wealth through food, which is a basic necessity for every human being. The performative excess added to the art of cooking food and presented within the four walls of a modernist restaurant simulates a believable reality that grabs the audience into the vortex of film. “The Menu” premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival in September 2022 and was released in the USA on November 18, 2022.

Director Mark Mylod, who is known for directing television series like “Succession,” “Shameless,” and several episodes of “Game of Thrones,” pays extra attention to details that add to the realism. Written by Will Tracy and Seth Reiss, the plot follows a young couple who join a small group of 12 guests to dine at an exclusive restaurant located on a coastal island. It is one of those fancy places that charge a lump sum amount from its guests (in this case $1250/person) to elevate a dining episode into a luxury experience. As instructed by Chef Slowik, food at the Hawthorne Restaurant is not supposed to be just eaten but relished and savored. The interiors of a modern Michelin-starred restaurant are painstakingly recreated. It is the well-written characters and a strong ensemble cast that elevate the film.

“The Menu” is a gastronomical study that highlights the truth of the service industry: how the personnel are ignored and undermined by the so-called rich guests or customers. The film comments on how a capitalist market has transformed the art of high creativity into a regular run-of-the-mill product of the food and service industry. Besides being a powerful satire, the film functions as a slasher horror as well. 2022 was the big year for the return of slasher films, along with Ti West’s “X” and “Pearl.” “The Menu,” if not that gory and grotesque, definitely allows you to drop your jaw and subsequently alienates you from what’s happening on screen. But just as the characters reassure themselves, the audiences also believe that murders, bloodshed, abductions, and chasing are all part of the menu. The cast does an extraordinary job holding the plot together. There are some famous names in the list of cast and characters attached below:

Anya Taylor-Joy As Margot

Margot is one of the guests at Hawthorn. She is a plus one for her boyfriend Tyler. At first glance, she appears to be a misfit. Dressed in a satin dress layered with a leather jacket, Margot Mills deliberately tries to fit in. In short, she isn’t sophisticated enough. She is often talked down upon by her boyfriend, who scolds her for smoking cigarettes not because they would kill her but rather because they would kill her taste buds, destroying the flavor profile. Eventually, it is discovered that her real name is Erin, and she provides her services to lonely men. She is a hooker. Halfway through the film, Chef Slowik offers her a choice: whether she wants to be a part of the group that gives or that which only knows to take from them without gratitude. She is the only one who escapes Slowik’s “eat the rich” scheme.

Anya Taylor Joy, with her expertise in the genres of horror and psychological thrillers, is an excellent Margot. Joy’s best-known films include “The Witch,” “Split,” “Last Night in Soho,” “The Northman,” etc. She was praised for her performance as Beth in the miniseries “The Queen’s Gambit.” She left a mark as a Jane Austen heroine in the 2020 adaptation of “Emma.” She has been a prominent part of the popular television show “Peaky Blinders.” Anya Taylor Joy has been roped in to star in Robert Eggers’ “Nosferatu.”

Ralph Fiennes As Chef Slowik

Chef Slowik is an artist, and his medium is food. It is his vision of exuberance that makes Hawthorne special. He serves a once-in-a-lifetime dining experience spread over several courses. Mixed with theatricality, Slowik serves his guests what they deserve. Eventually, it becomes quite clear that Chef Slowik has turned into a villain only after being frustrated by the indifference he received from his customers. Ralph Fiennes is forever stuck in the heads of “Harry Potter” fans as Voldemort. He has been an important part of Daniel Craig’s Bond films as well. Easily typecast as a supervillain, Fiennes has appeared in films like “The Schindler’s “In Bruges,” “The Grand Budapest”,”The English Patient”,”Maid in Manhattan “, etc.

Nicholas Hoult As Tyler

Tyler is a fanboy. Right from the beginning, he seemed very excited to be at the restaurant. He wants to do everything perfectly so that he gets noticed by the chef. It is suspicious for the audience when he brings Margot as his date instead of his regular girlfriend. It is later revealed that only Tyler knew about Chef Slowik’s plan for mass murder. Tyler is a stock character – often buffoonish and everything that is wrong with today’s generation- a wannabe influencer. Tyler is a know-it-all who faces an unknown end at Hawthorne. Nicholas Hoult is best known for his role in the British TV series “Skins.” He has been in successful films like the “X-men” franchise, “Mad Max: Fury,” and “Warm Bodies.” He is all set to star in “Renfield” alongside Nicholas Cage in 2023 and “Garfield,” the animated film, in 2024.

Hong Chau As Elsa

Elsa is the assistant to Chef Slowik. She, along with the entire staff at Hawthorne, resides on the island. Just like the entire staff, she is privy to Slowik’s plan for the massacre. In the course of the film, she gets murdered by Margot. Elsa’s presence on the screen is enough to curdle your blood. She is cold and brutal and always has an evil smirk on her lips. Chau has appeared in HBO series like “Big Little Lies” and “Watchmen.” She has lent her voice to the adult animated series “BoJack Horseman.” She is going to appear in “Asteroid City,” directed by Wes Anderson, next.

Reed Birney And Richard Liebbrandt

Richard Liebbrandt, along with his wife Anne, is a regular at Hawthorne. At the beginning of the film, the prostitute Margot immediately recognizes him as her client, who has a weird kink. In the course of the film, as part of Slowik’s theatrical menu, Richard loses a finger. He and his wife are among those rich people who have no respect for art. Anne and Richard clearly have a dysfunctional marriage. Reed Birney has been seen in the Netflix show “House of Cards,” the DC series “Titans,” and in films like “Mass.”

Judith Light As Anne Liebbrandt

Anne is Richard’s wife. Since the beginning, she has seemed melancholic, which is easily perceivable as the rich wife syndrome. Later, we learn she is sad for her daughter. Judith Light recently appeared in the musical “Tick, tick, boom!” although she is best known for her roles in the series “Who’s the Boss?” and “Ugly Betty.”

Janet McTeer As Lilian Bloom

Lilian Bloom is an experienced food critic who has been responsible for making or breaking the careers of chefs over the years. Lilian has reviewed Chef Slowik many times and was personally invited by him to dine at the restaurant that evening. It is very disturbing to observe Lilian’s unperturbed face even when Slowik and his staff are conducting acts of cruelty one after another. McTeer is known for her roles in series like “Ozark” and “Jessica Jones” (both on Netflix). She has also popped up in films like “Wuthering Heights” and “Allegiant,” which is a film from the “Divergent” series.

Paul Adelstein As Ted

Ted is a magazine editor and Lilian’s plus-one for the soiree. He is a snob and a typical “yes, ma’am” character. He is also paying for both their dinners. Paul Adelstein is known for his roles in “Scandal,” “Chicago P.D,” and the television serial “Private Practice.”

John Leguizamo As The Faded Movie Star

Once popular, the movie star lands at Slowik’s restaurant, trying to recover his career as a food and lifestyle show host. But little does he know that he is on Slowik’s hit list because of the substandard films he used to make, which made Slowik lose his precious day off. John Leguizamo has appeared in films like “Romeo+Juliet,” “Moulin Rouge!” and recently voiced the role of Bruno in the animated film “Encanto.” 

Aimee Carrero As Felicity

Felicity is the movie star’s assistant who keeps on threatening to quit her job. We later learn that she has been stealing and laundering his money. Aimee Carrero is noted for her work in series like “Blindspot” and “Young & Hungry” and in animated films like “Princess of Power,” “Elena of Avalor,” and “She-Ra.”

“The Menu” has been served and is now streaming hot on Disney+Hotstar.

See more: ‘Ant-Man And The Wasp: Quantumania’ Character Guide: Who Is Kang The Conqueror?