Written by Nelson Cumming
The Lobster is one of the bleakest, weirdest, funniest, most satirical, and most original movies of the year. It blends a ton of social commentary about relationships in the most deadpan way possible. It is a story that is absurd and messy but tightly and smartly written. I love it.
The Lobster is absurd at the root of the story, yet there is a twisted, human truth that’s at its very core. The story follows David (Colin Farrell) a recent divorcee who moves into a hotel. David has 45 days to find a significant other. If David doesn’t find a significant other in that time, he gets turned into an animal of his choice. His choice is a lobster partly because “They are blue-blooded like aristocrats”.
Surprisingly enough David is not alone. He brings his brother. The thing is, his brother is a dog because he went to the same hotel but couldn’t find a life partner in 45 days.
When I heard of the premise I was so excited to see it. I was interested because not only was the premise fit my style of humor but it was so original. What’s even better is that the premise is only the surface of the movie, the tip of the iceberg if you will. When I thought about The Lobster more and more, the ideas came out.
The irony of the rich, funny premise is the movie is played deliberately bleak, deadpan and monotonous. Therein lies its satire, a human truth that is the rules of love we make up. The movie presents this hotel as rigorously organized in terms of improving human qualities like hunting and sexuality in the most matter-of-fact way possible as if love is formulaic.
The Lobster even satirizes the ways in which people may lie to their significant others so they would feel more attractive to them. A man called “Limping Man” (That is his name in the credits) is attracted to “Nosebleed Woman” (Also her name in the credits) who has frequent nose bleeds. Feeling insecure, he deliberately makes his nose bleed behind her back in an attempt to woo her.
The second half of the movie occurs in the woods which consists of rebels of the hotel. Their belief is remaining single forever. No one can have a relationship and you literally dig your own grave. Even in its satire, The Lobster is morbid. It goes to all of these extremities to find the humor and to find the darkness with great results.
If deadpan humor is your thing then The Lobster is the film to see this year, if you’re the kind of people who wants a dose of originality then this is will be up your alley. The Lobster can be grim and bleak, but the heart the humor and storytelling more than make up for it. Even the grimness and bleakness is justifiable for the morals of the story. The Lobster is one of the most original left-of-centre movies of the year ****3/4