Shao nian de ni

Better Days
‘It's a deal. You protect the world; I'll protect you.’

When it is time for the Chinese gaokao, the entire country comes to a standstill. For nearly ten million high school students, this two-day national college entrance exam will determine where and if they get to study. It is not uncommon for the fates of entire families to hinge on the results. Like so many others, Nian has been single-mindedly preparing for the exam, at the exclusion of everything else and all alone. A classmate has committed suicide and she has become the target of relentless bullying. Meanwhile, fate brings her together with small-time criminal Bei and the two of them seal a pact. Derek Kwok-Cheung Tsang's intense melodramatic thriller paints a bleak picture of an oppressive society, in the guise of a gripping fairy-tale love story.
by Derek Kwok-cheung Tsang
with Zhou Dongyu, Jackson Yee, Yin Fang, Huang Jue
Hong Kong, China / People’s Republic of China 2019 Mandarin 138’ Colour


  • Zhou Dongyu (Chen Nian)
  • Jackson Yee (Xiao Bei)
  • Yin Fang (Zheng Yi)
  • Huang Jue (Lao Yang)


Director Derek Kwok-cheung Tsang
Screenplay Li Yuan, Xu Yimeng, Lam Wing Sum based on Jiu Yue Xi’s novel ’Young & Beautiful‘
Cinematography Yu Jing Pin
Editing Zhang Yibo
Music Varqa Buehrer
Sound Design Joe Huang
Production Design Liang Honghu
Art Director Liang Honghu
Costumes Dora Ng
Make-Up Ma Jingjing
Assistant Director Joe Tsang
Casting Sun Yan
Production Manager Charlie Wong
Executive Producer Zong Shujie, Lili Sun, Shen Hao Bo, Jojo Yuet-chun Hui, Peter Ho-sun Chan, Qin Hong
Producer Jojo Yuet-chun Hui

World sales

We Distribution

Produced by

Goodfellas Pictures

Derek Kwok-cheung Tsang

Born in Hong Kong in 1979. After studying at the University of Toronto, he began working as an actor in Hong Kong and appeared in numerous films. He has been directing films since 2010. Following his co-directing debut, Lover’s Discourse, he made his first feature film, Soul Mate. The film won the Hong Kong Film Directors’ Guild award for Best Director in 2017 and was nominated for a Golden Horse Award in the Best Director category.


2010 Leun yan sui yu (Lover’s Discourse) 2012 Zui hou yi ye (Lacuna) 2016 Good Take! · Qi yue yu an sheng (Soul Mate) 2018 Shao nian de ni (Better Days)

Bio- & filmography as of Berlinale 2019