The Lobster weaves a tale of an alternate reality in which single people check into a hotel where they are given 45 days to couple up or turn into an animal of their choosing should they fail. This is not “how things are” so much as it is “how things are enforced.” There are strict rules in place to move courtship along. There are little performances explaining these regulations to demonstrate the value of togetherness over singledom. In promoting stereotypical roles, the horror of this fable is somewhat rooted in sexism, but there is genuine concern that everyone ends up happy. The greater problem is the excess literalness of the prescriptions. The world of The Lobster recognizes the importance of compatibility, but it doesn’t understand it. Even the rebel element is just as adherent to its own severe code. The scary lesson is that no matter what path you choose for yourself, it will be a landmine to navigate society at large with your chosen identity.
I give The Lobster 9 Nosebleeds out of 10 Toasters, but I must take away 1 point for one too many eye pokes.