According to the rules of The City, single people are taken to The Hotel where they are given 45 days to find a partner. Those who fail are turned into an animal of their choice and released into the forest. Masturbation is banned but sexual stimulation by the hotel maid, without orgasm, is mandatory.
The guests attend dances and watch propaganda extolling the virtues of partnership. They can extend their stay by hunting escapees, The Loners, with tranquillizer guns in The Woods. Each captured Loner affords an extra day to find a partner. After his wife leaves him for another man, David arrives at The Hotel with his brother, who was turned into a dog after failing to find a partner. He makes acquaintances with a man with a lisp and a man with a limp. After the Lisping Man is caught masturbating, the Hotel Manager burns his fingers in a toaster.
The Limping Man wins the affections of a woman who suffers from nosebleeds by feigning his own nosebleed problem by smashing his nose against hard surfaces. The two move to the couples section to begin their month of trial partnership. During a hunt for a loner, David is hit on by the Biscuit Woman. After he declines her offer of sexual pleasure, she tells him that if she fails to find a mate, then she’ll kill herself by jumping off the hotel.
Nosebleed Woman and her friend sit at the table on her friend’s final day as a human. She reads a note to her friend about their long friendship, which the friend replies with a slap across her face. The friend then requests to spend her final night watching Stand by Me.
David decides to seduce the most cold-blooded woman, the Heartless Woman. He first sees her in the outdoor area, and attempts to talk to her, but their conversation is interrupted by the screams of the Biscuit Woman, who had earlier jumped out of her room. In The Hotel. Sharing a jacuzzi, she feigns choking; when he does not respond, she decides they may be a good match and they begin their trial relationship. After she murders David’s brother, he claims he does not care; when he begins to cry, she concludes their relationship is built on a lie. As she marches him to the Hotel Manager he escapes and, with the help of The Maid, tranquillizes her and transforms her into an animal.
The Lobster is a film directed by Greek director Yorgos Lanthimos in his English language feature film debut. Set in a dystopian near-future, the film tells the story of a city where singles are given 45 days to find a romantic partner before they are turned into an animal. It stars Colin Farrell, Rachel Weisz, and Léa Seydoux. The film is internationally co-produced by companies from Ireland, the United Kingdom, Greece, France and the Netherlands.
It was selected to compete for the Palme d’Or at the 2015 Cannes Film Festival and won the Jury Prize. It was shown in the Special Presentations section of the 2015 Toronto International Film Festival.
Directed by: Yorgos Lanthimos
Starring: Jacqueline Abrahams, Roger Ashton-Griffiths, Jessica Barden, Olivia Colman, Anthony Dougall, Rosanna Hoult
Screenplay by: Yorgos Lanthimos, Efthymis Filippou
Production Design by: Jacqueline Abrahams
Cinematography by: Thimios Bakatakis
Film Editing by: Yorgos Mavropsaridis
Costume Design by: Sarah Blenkinsop
Art Direction by: Mark Kelly
MPAA Rating: R for sexual content including dialogue, and some violence.
Studio: A24 Films
Release Date: May 13, 2016