Daphne and Zoology: this week’s best films in the UK | Film

1 Daphne (15)
(Peter Mackie Burns, 2017, UK) 88 mins

This British debut homes in on a complex, intelligent, spiky, often self-destructive young woman, adrift in atomised modern-day London. It’s a drama of small moments (many of them drunken), but it’s above all a calling card for Emily Beecham, who’s never less than compelling.

2 On Body and Soul (18)
(Ildikó Enyedi, 2017, Hun) 116 mins

Oddly moving … Watch the trailer for On Body and Soul.

Somewhere between Milan Kundera and Michel Gondry, this moving oddity finds romance in a Hungarian abattoir, where two outsiders find themselves having the same dream of deer communing in a snowy forest. These gorgeous images are offset by brutal slaughterhouse footage, which is of a piece with the film’s jarring, bittersweet tone.

3 The Road to Mandalay (15)
(Midi Z, 2016, Mya/Tai) 108 mins

Emotional kick … watch the trailer for The Road to Mandalay.

Social realism with an emotional kick. We follow two migrants from Burma into Thailand; strangers thrown together whose dreams of a better life are weighed against insecurity, bureaucracy, exploitation and other challenges, not to mention their own complicated, semi-romantic relationship.

4 Zoology (15)
(Ivan I Tverdovsky, 2016, Rus/Fra/Ger) 91 mins

Tall tail … watch the trailer for Zoology.

Fusing elements of Kafka, Cronenberg, folk tale and Shirley Valentine, this movie focuses on a middle-aged Russian zoo worker who unexpectedly grows a big, pink tail. Rather than being horrified, she reinvents herself, romancing a doctor and rebelling against her drab existence. Not everyone is happy for her, of course: there’s a sting to this tail.

5 Killing Ground (15)
(Damien Power, 2016, Aus) 88 mins

Break from hell … watch the trailer for Killing Ground.

It’s not exactly new ground, admittedly, but if you need another reason never to take an outback camping trip – or to pack appropriate weaponry if you do – it’s all…

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