Synopsis by Jonathan Crow
Master filmmaker Hou Hsiao-Hsien directs this look at life in modern Taipei, the first part of a planned series. The film opens with a vivacious lass named Vicky (Shu Qi) sauntering down a neon-lit tunnel as the voice-over describes how she is going to break up with her on and off boyfriend Hao Hao once she has spent the NT$500,000 in her bank account. A young free spirit and party girl, she makes a living for both her and Hao Hao (Tuan Chun-hao) by working at a hostess bar. Lazy, neurotic, and pathologically jealous, Hao Hao spends his time DJ-ing and smoking speed when he is not rifling through Vicky's belongings looking for some hint of infidelity. At work, she meets Jack (played by Hou regular Jack Kao), a businessman with strong links to the mafia who nonetheless is kind and nurturing to Vicky. They soon begin an ambiguous affair. This film was screened at the 2001 Cannes and Toronto Film Festivals.
Taiwan, party-girl, waiter, drug-addiction, boyfriend, Mafia