Amy Adams and Jeremy Renner in Arrival.

Top five films to watch in Hong Kong this week (January 12-18), from Arrival to Desierto

There’s also a rare chance to watch Jean-Luc Godard’s classic Weekend on the big screen

Click on film titles to read reviews

1. Arrival

Its source novella, Ted Chiang’s Story of Your Life, is science fiction with a capital S, but Sicario director Denis Villeneuve’s poetic adaptation of the alien drama also manages to include a simple but timely message: that the world is a better place when people work together. (Opens on January 12)

2. A Monster Calls

A reassuring tree giant helps an imaginative boy through difficult times in this poignant Gothic fable. Liam Neeson’s baritone voice brings regenerative power to the unusual blend of sadness and fantasy, adapted by Spanish director J.A. Bayona from Patrick Ness’ 2011 children’s novel. (Now showing)

3. Desierto

An intense survival thriller that has earned unexpected relevance in the wake of Donald Trump’s rise to power, director Jonas Cuaron brings B-movie thrills to the deadly battle between undocumented Mexican workers and a xenophobic American sniper at the US-Mexico border. (Opens on January 12)

4. Weekend

There is no way to adequately describe the anarchic hilarity of Jean-Luc Godard’s 1967 film, a surreal satire on cinema, consumerism, and civilisation as a whole that remains a provocative watch half a century later. A must-see for anyone interested in film history. (January 15, part of Cine Fan programme)

5. Godspeed

Since his 2008 debut Parking, Taiwanese filmmaker Chung Mong-hong has excelled in pitch-black human dramas notable for their vibrant style and biting touches of irony. Still, it’s a nice surprise that Michael Hui Koon-man should prove such a perfect fit for this offbeat comedy/gangster thriller. (Now showing)

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