Yorgos LanthimosThe Lobster (Alchemy, 3.16) is a half-effective parable piece, dryly comedic and lightly romantic at times, that was made to be shown at film festivals and particularly to effete critics like Variety‘s Guy Lodge. It’s darkly pulsing and tingly during the first half, and then it runs out of gas and becomes a drag to sit through. In Cannes I called it “a dryly amusing, Bunuelian parlor piece about societal oppression, singlehood, conformity and totalitarianism.” It’s about a society in which singles are routinely arrested and sent to “The Hotel”, where they have 45 days to pair up with someone. If they fail, they’re transformed into an animal of their choosing and released into “The Woods.” Fundamental question: Who could possibly fail to find a mate under these circumstances? Obviously singles would find someone on at least a pretend basis, if for no other reason than to avoid being turned into a four-legged beast of some kind. I found a place in my head for Dogtooth and I know Lanthimos is a kind of late-Bunuelian, crazy-salad type of guy but The Lobster is whimsical and undeveloped. Costarring Colin Farrell (rockin’ a seriously chunky dad bod), Rachel Weisz, John C. Reilly, Olivia Colman, Ben Whishaw and Lea Seydoux.