Review | The Menu | 2022
Both better than anything Adam McKay has directed in his "serious era," and also wholly representative of pretty much everything that makes his films insufferable, The Menu thinks it's being very profound but it's treading well worn ground, from as recently as Ready or Not, The Hunt, and Knives Out, to classics like The Exterminating Angel, Weekend, and A Report on the Party and Guests. Hell even Triangle of Sadness is in this "ear the rich" vein, and The Menu doesn't really do anything we haven't seen done better multiple times before.
It wants so badly to be that unpretentious "good old fashioned cheeseburger" that becomes so pivotal to the story, but since McKay's fingerprints are all over this, he feels like he has to call out anyone who didn't believe in his self important diss tracks. The irony, of course, is that McKay was always a better filmmaker when focusing on making "good old fashioned cheeseburgers" like Anchorman that were just good, solid, crowd-pleasing entertainment, but since going down this dour, self-important route where his films have to be About Something, they're just not as interesting and he keeps scolding us for not caring about them.
The Menu is not a McKay film, of course, it's directed by Mark Mylod while McKay merely serves as producer, but the grievances hang heavy over its thuddingly obvious metaphors. Mylod has some fun with it, and Fiennes does some delicious work. But its eat the rich allegories are half-baked at best.