All Your Questions About "The Menu," Answered (2024)

All Your Questions About "The Menu," Answered (1)

In the new horror film "The Menu," which is now streaming on HBO Max, an ensemble cast starring Anya Taylor-Joy, Nicholas Hoult, and John Leguizamo play restaurant patrons who end up at the most terrifying dinner of their lives. The maestro of their suffering is Chef Julian Slowik (Ralph Fiennes), a methodical and exacting mastermind who turns them into the objects of his ministrations. The movie is funny, scary, thrilling, and totally weird all at once, making it a 2022 standout.

At the beginning of the film, the guests board a small boat, which takes them to the island of Hawthorne. They then go on a tour of the island — almost everything they'll eat was grown, raised, or caught there — before heading to the restaurant itself. The film, directed by Mark Mylod ("Game of Thrones," "Succession"), is in parts scary, shocking, and hilarious.

Ahead, get the answers to your biggest questions about "The Menu," including that twist ending.

Is "The Menu" About Cannibalism?

We know you're wondering. The trailer for "The Menu" isn't huge on details, so a lot of viewers have wondered if the twist of the movie would be that the food the guests eat is actually made with human meat, which would turn into another cannibalism movie entirely. Despite speculation, "The Menu" is not, in fact, about cannibalism, and no human meat is involved in the film. That said, people do die as part of Slowik's "menu." Multiple "courses" include the deaths of diners or chefs, all according to the chef's demented plan.

"The Menu," Ending Explained

In "The Menu," viewers learn Chef Slowik prepares a very special lineup for his hand-selected guests. He finds each one of them detestable in a different way and uses the menu to uncover what he sees as the worst parts of them. Hoult's Tyler — the dinner date of Taylor-Joy's Margot — says early in the movie that Slowik is a storyteller. The different pieces of the menu, he explains, will eventually tell a great story. Later, one of the sous-chefs tells the guests Slowik is planning on killing all of the diners, all of his employees, and himself because it's the only way to thematically end the menu.

Margot is the one wrinkle that Slowik didn't plan for; she's a sex worker whom Tyler brings with him because he can't reserve a table for a party of one, and his date dumps him. Tyler actually knew all along that the menu would end with all of them dying. Slowik lets Margot choose if she wants to stay with the restaurant's team or with the eaters, though ultimately she dies either way. He tells her that he used to find joy in making and serving food, but it's all gone for him now.

Margot chooses to stand with the staff, and Slowik sends her on an errand to get a metal drum that was left elsewhere on the island. She obeys but then decides to visit his house first. (During their tour of the island, Elsa, played by Hong Chau, tells them no one is allowed in there.) Elsa follows Margot into the house and attacks her, but Margot stabs her. She then finds the chef's bedroom and a framed photo of him at his first job flipping burgers. Margot also finds a radio and calls for help.

Later, Margot returns to the restaurant, where chef Slowik is about to begin dessert. He sees a boat approaching the docks through the restaurant's massive window and is furious with Margot for calling for help. He makes her sit with the guests again. It turns out, the Coast Guard rescuer is also on Slowik's payroll, so the rescue plan is a bust. It seems all the dinner guests are out of luck, but then Margot has a brilliant thought.

She tells the chef that she actually didn't take part in his menu; she thought it was all super pretentious, and she didn't eat anything. She's still hungry. She asks him to make her a simple, uncomplicated cheeseburger and fries instead. He obliges because it's his job.

Margot tells him that the burger and fries are more food than she can eat, though, and asks for a doggie bag. He gives her one, she pays for her meal and leaves. Everyone else pays for their food before chef kills them in the final course of the menu — a giant s'more, with the patrons serving as the marshmallows. Margot drives away on the boat from the fake Coast Guard captain and watches the restaurant burn as she eats her burger.

Why Does Slowik Let Margot Leave?

Margot, after listening to Slowik's rants, is able to tap into the idea that he just wants to make food that people enjoy. When Margot tells him she didn't enjoy the meal, he has to make her something else to fulfill his role as a provider, and it's something she knows he has an emotional connection to. This will be a fulfilling meal for him to make, complete with a storyline of its own. And when she doesn't finish it, he has to let her leave so she can finish it elsewhere. Those are the rules of restaurants, and he's nothing if not a stickler for the rules.

All Your Questions About "The Menu," Answered (2024)


Why did Tyler hang himself in The Menu? ›

Tyler Hung Himself After Being Humiliated By Chef

After the failed cooking demonstration, Tyler proceeds to be reprimanded by Chef Slowik.

What is the main message of The Menu? ›

Both The Menu and its real-life inspiration are examinations of exorbitant consumer culture, of foodies, and the superficiality of the wealthy who believe they're giving to the fine dining experience when they're really leeching from it.

Why was Felicity killed in The Menu? ›

For example, personal assistant Felicity is killed for the fact she went to the Ivy League Brown University and has no student loan from it. Her murder is thus made part of the plan without clarifying whether this is because she got a scholarship, or because she comes from wealth.

What was Tyler's sin in The Menu? ›

How Tyler Represents Gluttony In The Menu. Considering how Tyler mindlessly chows down everything placed on his table at the Hawthrone, his place as the glutton is quite obvious.

What did Chef Slowik whisper to Tyler in The Menu? ›

Slowik presumably whispered that Tyler would not only never earn his praise, but also was no longer considered worthy of being "part" of his menu. That was, perhaps, a fate even worse than death for Tyler, leading to his suicide before The Menu's ending.

Why did Margot survive The Menu? ›

What the film essentially boils down to, then, is that Margot is the only guest who is able to see past the pretension to something a little more meaningful – and this is why she is spared. The Menu is now streaming on Disney Plus.

What does cheeseburger mean in The Menu? ›

The cheeseburger itself is a symbol of the thing that reminded Slowik why he began cooking, and how he fell in love with it. The simple act of preparing something for someone who greatly appreciates it – no bells and whistles, no frills or fuss.

Who is the villain in The Menu? ›

Slowik to the guests as he prepares to kill them and himself. Chef Julian Slowik is the main antagonist of the 2022 psychological thriller/dark-comedy horror film The Menu.

Why did chef let Erin go? ›

Den of Geek writes that the clap we hear as she bites into her burger might hint that the meat is poisonous. That's why Slowik let her escape: he knew she was going to die anyway after eating the burger.

Was Margot the chef's daughter in The Menu? ›

Margot is unmasked as an escort named Erin, whose clients included Richard, whom she stopped meeting because he hired her to pretend to be his daughter. Slowik reveals that Tyler was informed the guests would be killed.

Who is the fallen angel in The Menu? ›

4 Drowning Doug Verrick: "Falling Angel"

In Slowik's form of righteous vengeance, he hangs his biggest investor above the ocean and slowly drowns him to Colin Stetson's original score "Falling Angel."

What's behind the silver door in The Menu? ›

After a fight that ends with Elsa stabbed in the neck, Margot learns what's behind that door - a room dedicated to Slowik's past featuring restaurant reviews, pictures of a former family, and a picture of him happy as a fry cook in a fast-food restaurant. That discovery is what helps her guarantee her freedom later on.

Was Tyler suicidal in The Menu? ›

Whatever Slowik said in his ear pushed him to hang himself, which may seem extreme, but we are talking about somebody who went to the island in the knowledge of what Slowik planned to do to all the diners. Tyler was obsessed with Slowik and discovered that his idol completely despised him.

Why was Tyler so weird in The Menu? ›

Throughout The Menu, Nicholas Hoult's Tyler is so blinded by his self-gratifying obsession with Slowik that he cannot see anything beyond it. He genuinely believes that being a self-proclaimed connoisseur of the chef's food puts him on an intellectual and social high ground.

Why was the chef's mom in The Menu? ›

The twelfth guest on Slowski's menu is no one else but his mother (Rebecca Koon), an abusive alcoholic that could never be satisfied. Slowski is so absorbed by his work and the making of his art because he's still trying to please people who don't care about him, making his mother an ingredient to his ultimate menu.

Why is Tyler so weird in The Menu? ›

Throughout The Menu, Nicholas Hoult's Tyler is so blinded by his self-gratifying obsession with Slowik that he cannot see anything beyond it. He genuinely believes that being a self-proclaimed connoisseur of the chef's food puts him on an intellectual and social high ground.

Why did Chef Slowik hate Tyler? ›

His care even goes as far as to being utterly disgusted at Tyler for setting up Margot to be killed on the menu, hence why he abused him for it.

Where did Tyler in The Menu go? ›

Slowik humiliates him by detailing his culinary mistakes, then whispers in his ear, and a deflated Tyler leaves the kitchen. Slowik asks Margot to go to the smokehouse and retrieve a barrel needed for dessert. As she leaves the kitchen, she discovers that Tyler has hanged himself in a closet.

Why did he let the girl go in The Menu? ›

Margot escapes, but maybe she doesn't survive after all. Den of Geek writes that the clap we hear as she bites into her burger might hint that the meat is poisonous. That's why Slowik let her escape: he knew she was going to die anyway after eating the burger.

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