Wednesday, September 7, 2016

FTW227 - The Lobster

In which our intrepid trio decide which animal would be the best to live out our remaining days together as we are joined by Mark Hurne of the Criterion Close Up podcast. Please follow Mark on twitter @MarkHurne and listen to his show on iTunes.  
Yay/Nay (5:56) Star Trek Beyond • Hell Or High Water • 35 Shots Of Rum • The 5th Wave • Snowpiercer • Justified S2 • The Candidate • Brooklyn • King Jack • Don't Breathe •  
Marks Criterion 101 (33:39) The Before Trilogy • Punch Drunk Love • La Haine • Repulsion • Persona • Blow Out •  

Main Review (54:44)  
Spoilers (1:21:10)  
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  1. I had an unfavorable opinion of 'The Lobster'. I actually thought the film was strikingly homophobic. In the scene where Colin Farrell's character is asked what his sexual preference is, he asks in return if there's a bisexual option, which suggests that he has same-sex attractions if not gay tendencies. When the person questioning him responds that there is no bisexual option and that he has to chose either gay or straight, it's supposed to read as a joke. Yet, the suggestion that one's sexuality can be a choice is something that is highly offensive in the LGBT community. I would accept a filmmaker wanting to explore that suggestion in a film, but the problem is that Lanthimos doesn't explore it at all. He simply makes a cheap joke out of it. The idea of Colin Farrel's character's same-sex tendency is never brought up again. Even if there were just one fleeting moment where maybe he acknowledged a same-sex attraction, a glance or lingering look at a man's ass for example, that would have been fine, but the fact that it's never brought again makes the suggestion at the beginning of the film that much more offensive. The fact that at no point at all in the film do we even see a same-sex couple in the hotel reinforces the homophobia. The woman who asks the question about his sexuality must ask for a reason, that reason being that there are probably gay couples that exist in Lanthimos' fictional world, so why not show them?

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