Review of Yorgos Lanthimos’ The Lobster

The Lobster retains the deadpan absurdity and eccentricities which have become a hallmark of Yorgos Lanthimos’ work but with a stellar cast, including Colin Farrell, Rachel Weisz, Léa Seydoux and Olivia Coleman, it is the director’s most accessible film to date.

Depicting a dystopian future where the ideal of the couple reigns supreme and single people are turned into animals, The Lobster follows the morose, portly David at a half-way hotel where singles are given a 45 day, last-ditch chance to couple up, chronicling their time there, his escape, and the perpetual battle between the status quo of the city and the escaped loners of the woods.

There’s a bizarre acceptance in the hotel’s inhabitants of the error of their single ways and a steadfast narrow-mindedness of what can make a suitable partner. The surrealism of The Lobster hides a biting satire of societal norms and the blinkered view of romantic love, which can so easily become ingrained. The film is thought-provoking and will make you squirm, but it is also quietly hilarious in its astute perceptions.

Ruby Beesley

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1. Trailer for The Lobster (2015). Courtesy of PictureHouse and Vimeo.