Film Review: “˜Ten Years’1 min readReading Time: < 1 minute
Political assassination. Self-immolation. Cultural annihilation. Children working as secret police. These are just some of the horrors five young helmers envisage for Hong Kong a decade down the line in “Ten Years,” a dystopian omnibus film that provoked the Chinese government’s ire. In the service of each worst-case scenario, the various shorts employ arresting visuals, edgy film language and absorbing storylines to express some citizens’ uncertainty about viability of “One Country, Two Systems” in the former British colony. Bristling with an “if not now, when?” thirst for change, this epic historical document of the city’s political zeitgeist should explode at festivals and online platforms like a Molotov cocktail.
Made on a shoestring budget of around US$65,000, the 2025-set anthology has earned an impressive US$790,000 despite securing scant domestic screening slots. China’s state paper the Global Times branded it “thought virus,” and the government allegedly ordered a media blackout when it was nominated for – and won – best film at the Hong Kong Film Awards (HKFA). When handing out the award, helmer-thesp and HKFA Chairman Derek Yee quoted Franklin Roosevelt: “Only thing we have to fear is fear itself.”
Image Credit: Ten Years