A Monster Calls.

Top five films to watch in Hong Kong this week (January 5-11), from A Monster Calls to Godspeed

A fantasy tearjerker, a Taipei taxi driver and four Taiwanese shorts, the French revolution and an unconventional family in the Pacific northwest among the pick of the flicks

Click on film titles to read reviews

1 A Monster Calls

A resentful 12-year-old copes with the imminent death of his cancer-stricken mother in this fantastical tearjerker. A gothic tale filled with searing emotions, The Orphanage director J. A. Bayona’s film is further enhanced by a memorable turn by Rogue One star Felicity Jones. (Opens on January 5)

2 Godspeed

Hong Kong comedy legend Michael Hui Koon-man delivers one of the greatest performances of his storied career in this riveting drama by Taiwanese director Chung Mong-hong, playing a Taipei taxi driver forced to reflect on his depressing life during a most unusual day on the road. (Opens on January 5)

3 Farewell, My Queen

One of the best recent films by director Benoît Jacquot, this exquisite 2012 period drama offers an oddly intimate account of the Bastille storming in 1789, featuring a pre- Bond Léa Seydoux as a servant obsessed with Marie Antoinette. (January 6, part of French Cinepanorama’s retrospective programme)

4 In Our Time

The seminal project which inaugurated the New Taiwan Cinema movement, this 1981 collection of four short films – including the late, great Edward Yang’s first effort – brought a refreshing touch of everyday realism to a previously stagnating industry. (January 6, part of Hong Kong Independent Film Festival)

5. Captain Fantastic

Viggo Mortensen plays the dedicated father of six who live deep in the forests of the Pacific northwest. As a tragedy forces them to reintegrate into society, Matt Ross’s earnest examination of an unconventional family values turns into one of the most thought-provoking features of recent times. (Now showing)

Want more articles like this? Follow SCMP Film on Facebook