Starring: Colin Farrell, Rachel Weisz, Léa Seydoux
Director: Yorgos Lanthimos
Running Time: 118 mins
The Lobster is a British-Irish film about a world where single people are forced to fall in love with a suitable partner within a certain time period, otherwise they are turned into animals and sent out into the woods to be hunted down by humans.
There’s no chance that you’ll see a film as weird as The Lobster this whole year. In what is effectively an indie arthouse piece, you get a completely insane and almost unfathomable world filled with more and more absurdities everywhere you look. However, it’s such an incredibly unique and eye-catching film that it’s still hugely engrossing and surprisingly entertaining to watch.
The story centres around one man, played by Colin Farrell, as he attempts to find a partner as a part of this bizarre system. The first act revolves around his time in ‘The Hotel’, and is not only hugely odd, but both dramatic and unnerving as well as hilarious to watch, featuring some of the best dark comedy written in years.
The film takes its story as seriously as any drama, and you feel that through the deeply disturbing atmosphere that emerges off the screen. However, as the film is just so weird, it eases you into the oddness of it all very impressively through the use of humour, something that more pretentious arthouse films fail to do, and are resultantly a lot harder to really get into.
So, you’ll definitely be laughing a lot, if not in a more disturbed than hugely entertained manner, throughout the first act, and by the end of it, you’ll surely be as used as you can be to the incredibly weird feel of this whole film.
Just to give you an idea of how unorthodox this film is, every scene is full of awkward silences, the actors speak as if they’re reading off of cue cards with no emotion whatsoever, the imagery is very ugly and unpleasant to look at right the way through, and the incredible slow pace of it all means that the film feels like it goes on for about five times as long as it actually does.
And yet, I still can’t get around the fact that this is a brilliant film. Mainly, it’s the fact that it’s just so unique and almost shockingly bizarre, but it’s just filled with so many captivating ideas that it’s impossible not to be fully drawn into this insane story.
So, the performances, the directing, the writing, and pretty much everything is stunning, apart from one big issue that prevents this from being a truly incredible film. Following the end of the first act, the film does lose its way quite a lot, taking almost too big a leap into an even stranger abyss than you ever imagined at the beginning, and, with a little less humour in the latter stages, isn’t as easy to watch as the first act had been.
However, it does pick up again towards a terrifying and as bizarre as ever conclusion, and that’s why I’m going to give The Lobster an 8.6, but I must warn you that if you feel you can’t cope with this film for longer than the first twenty minutes, then it’s not for you. This is definitely a cult film for the ages, but won’t be a big hit with general audiences.