An absurdist masterpiece, The Lobster is the first English language work from the wonderfully warped Yorgos Lanthimos (Dogtooth, Alps) and his screenwriting collaborator Efthymis Filippou.

Recently dumped by his wife, David (Colin Farrell) goes to a countryside hotel where guests (John C. Reilly and Ben Whishaw amongst them) must find a suitable mate within 45 days or be turned into the animal of their choice. They attend group meetings and mixers designed by staff (a wryly Nurse Ratched-esque Olivia Colman) to foster compatible pairings. But David’s search ultimately leads to the “loners,” militant outcasts (led by Léa Seydoux) who live in the woods and are routinely hunted by hotel guests. Although the loners forbid intimacy, he befriends a short-sighted woman (Rachel Weisz).

With deadpan conviction and perfect comedic alchemy, The Lobster thrusts us into a darkly satirical world that posits love as a social construct, skewering ritualized coupledom and our base impulses toward romance (loneliness, insecurity, desperation, cruelty) before adopting a more emotional complexion. The Lobster’s debatably ironic conclusion is one of many engaging ambiguities that give it a philosophical allure.

YEAR 2015

SECTION Spotlight

COUNTRY Ireland/United Kingdom/Greece/France

RUN TIME 119 min

LANGUAGE English and French

SUBTITLES Yes with English subtitles


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Production Designer

Artist Bio

Yorgos Lanthimos

Yorgos Lanthimos was born in Athens. Kinetta, his first film, played at the Toronto and Berlin International Film Festivals. His second feature, Dogtooth, won the 2009 Un Certain Regard award at Cannes and was nominated for the 2011 Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film. Alps won the Golden Osella for best screenplay at the 2011 Venice Film Festival and best film at the 2012 Sydney Film Festival. The Lobster is his first English-language film.