Tokyo Skin (1996) - full transcript

Amidst the swirl of Tokyo's seamy nightlife of designer drugs, casual sex, and American slang, Zhou turns 30. It's a spiritual crisis for this Chinese immigrant who quotes Confucius, this Lothario and con artist who fences stolen goods. He falls for Kyoko, a seemingly shy provincial woman looking for the man who jilted her sister. As their relationship plays out, Hanawa intercuts stories of Kazuo, a hyper- kinetic artist who loves the trendy Yoko (Kazuo bores her and she pursues the indifferent Zhou), and Ali, a Pakistani Muslim who, broke and forlorn, stands outside a convenience store love-struck by a clerk because she looked into his eyes (she thought he was shop-lifting).

Produced & Released by
Only Hearts

Xiu Jian

Leave him alone!

Run, you fool!

Them's the breaks.

A man's got to do something.

Never thought a ceiling
would give way.

And stupid me goes and
falls right through it.

Okay, I guess it was stupid
to pull such a caper.

But what else could I do?

A man's got to live.

That's just how it is.

Confucius said, "People die for
property and birds die for food."

Forget Confucius.
He's too difficult.

This city's just like
a village in heaven.

I never know if people here
are pleased or pissed.

The forest teems with birds.

Forget that shallow crap.

I really want to do something
for them.

Not all the time,
of course.

I'm capable of killing someone.

No point in rushing.

I'm almost 30.

I'm so pissed off.

I gotta keep my cool.

You've reached Zhou's
consulting service for foreigners.

There is a charge for
our services.

Any currency is acceptable.

Please leave your name, number
and the time you called.

You cheat!
I want my money back!

I hope you die in some gutter!

I curse your ancestors!

A couple either marries or fights.

I thought it was only with Chinese,
but it's the same everywhere.

I've been in Japan for five years.

More than 100 women
have cursed me.

Women like to curse.

I've only been thanked once.

I was quite touched.

But the next day, she was hit
by a car and died.

Dammit! I said it wasn't
a good idea.

Robbing a pachinko parlour
was a stupid idea.

Just shut up!

Don't tell me to shut up!

You borrowed money
from the Iranians.

As long as we pay it back.
We're making money anyway.

Stupid! It's not that simple.

You're absolutely hopeless.

Not you, too?

When will you pay?

Real soon. Anyway,
it's not such a great amount.

Stop that.

Look, babe, we need that
money to live on.

How's your job?

I've just quit.

Listen, I've got a great idea.

Stop that!

If you open your legs,
you can get anything you want.

Open 'em for me, baby.

Get your paws off me,
you creep!

Are you going to pay me
what you owe?

- Screwing her will be more fun.
- Get the money, bitch!

I want my money back!

Hi. Are you free?

Where are you going?

None of your business,
stupid bitch.

What did you say?

- Chinese sounds so cute.
- Get lost!

Fuck off and die!

What are you doing?

- What's this?
- It's a real stone!

For me?

You're just great!
I love you.

Only 50,000 yen.

Your payment's late.

I loaned you money.

You're obliged to pay me back.


C'mon. I need that money now.

Look, I understand...

But I just got kneed
in the nuts by some babe.

That's not my problem...
I want my money back.

I need that money.

I know...


We're friends.

- What's this?
- For you.

I'm a Muslim.
I can't accept it.

Take a good look.

It's pure gold.
You can sell it.

It's worth more than
what I owe you.

But it's against my religion.

But it's solid gold.
Take it.

It's 30% of the regular price.

How you doing?

Trying hard. But with no woman
and no money, it's tough.

Hi, brother.
Found a girlfriend yet?

Not yet.

Take the Yamanote line.
It's full of pussy.


Japanese guys do it to
feel up the babes.

But wash your hands.

Hi, there.

Stop it!

- We're friends, aren't we?
- Give me discount on this.

- Half price.
- C'mon, we're friends.

- I'm losing money already.
- They're stolen goods, right?

But I still have to buy them.

- Give her a deal.
- Okay. - Thanks.

- Who is it?
- It's me.

What's happening?

Can you move 20 video decks?

I can move an A-bomb
if you've got one.

Hi, Zhou.

Hello. Dry your hands.

Long time no see.
I've been looking for you.

Can you help me get married?

Will you introduce
a Japanese lady to me?

That's a tough one,
but I can get you a passport.

No, I just want to marry
a beautiful Japanese woman.

It's not that easy.

Look: I have money.
Is it enough?

Money's not the problem.
It's all about love.

- Okay, I'll find one for you.
- Thank you.

You're welcome. Bye.

What's up?

That stupid little shit's here.

How's that Thai girl's passport?

It's all finished.


You fancy her, right?

No. But she sure is pretty.

I'll see her tonight.
I'll mention you.

- Someone to see you.
- Who?

Dunno. She's downstairs.

I gotta go. Thanks.

You take care.

You're losing your touch.

No way.
I'm the best there is.

I'm Zhou.
What can I do for you?

Sorry, it was a mistake.

You're looking for a man
named 'Zhou'?

I know all the Zhou's in Tokyo.
Trust me, baby.

Forget it.


I'm not a bad guy. See?

No, thanks. Forget it.

Thanks anyway.

Don't act like a kid.

You're in trouble, aren't you?
I can help you.

I'm not in any trouble.

Okay, what's his name?
Tell me his name.

C'mon, tell me.
His name.

Zhou... Kai Meng.

Zhou Kai Meng...?

You have lousy pronunciation!

It don't make sense.

Look, can you write it in
Chinese characters?

No, no. That's not right.

There's no character like
that in Chinese.

Okay, I'm sorry.

Listen, can you be at this bar
at ten tonight?

I'll find him by then.

Long time no see.
I missed you.

For you: it's soap that washes
away the fat.

The last one you had
didn't work.

That was from Taiwan.
This is genuine Chinese.

Only 8000 yen. Just touch it
and the pounds fall away.

Only once did I ever
deceive my father...

And, mama-san, you know
I've never lied to you.

- 8000 yen?
- Yes.

Hi, baby, good to see you.
Your new passport.

Just like the genuine article.

Thank you.

Are you free tonight?

You ever heard of AIDS?

I haven't been tested.

We're friends.

Try me.

You're a friend of mine.

Anna! I love you, babe.

No, it isn't.

"Only Hearts"?
You've got the wrong number.

This green is so macho.
Far out!

Excuse me.

It's so powerful.

Watch out: English-speaking
Japanese are dangerous.

They'll try to rip you off.

You scared me, Miss AIDS.

I'm clean.
Let's get it on.

- How old are you?
- C'mon, let's go.

- Gee, I'm sorry.
- I want my money back.

Don't be like that.

Take a good look at this.

What did you do to it?

Stay where you are.

Bring this cute girl along, too.

Foreigners are taking over
the crime scene these days.

They're ruining our Japan.

Steer well clear of this type.

Hang on for one minute.

Go back to the bar.
Wait for me there.

Excuse me.

Hey! You stay here.

Okay, okay.
Go on!

There's no Yoko here.

I'm a digital artist from New York.
I just got here by satellite.

Yoko isn't here.

She's not there?

Where is she?

Where's she gone?

To Roppongi.
Won't be back until morning.

Why are you so angry?

Why are you so angry?

Get out, or I'll call the police!

Damn it!

Do you know Zhou?

Give me all your money
and I'll find you jobs.

Your story's changed.

At the airport,
you said $400.

What about you guys?

You're trying to rip us off.

Then, no deal.

Tokyo's dangerous at night.
You be careful.

Hey, Yoko.

What's your name?


You know where he is?

I mean Zhou Kai Meng.

Wait up!

He lives in Otsuka.
My friend knows him.

Can I trust you?

Hey, cool it.

You're weird.

Why would I possibly
try to deceive you?

Then why are you chasing me?

Because you're in trouble.

No, I'm not.

It's because I'm a woman.

You're right,
but what's wrong with that?

Just stop it.

Stop being so smart!

You look down on women.
What do you think I am?

You're laughing at me.

It happens all the time.
Everybody's laughing at me.

No, no. You're very cute.
I really mean it.

Stop conning me!

- Wait.
- What?

Okay. It doesn't matter
what you think of me.

You're looking for Zhou, right?

Nine o'clock tomorrow
at Otsuka Station.

Good night.

"Everybody wants wealth
and honourable status.

"But without perseverance,
they will not come.

"All hate poverty
and low standing.

"But transcending them
must be done lawfully."

That's what Confucius said.

I remember the words
from when I was a kid.

They have a profound meaning.

And something to do with me.
But what, I don't know.

But I do understand the parable.

It has no deep meaning.

So what?
Eventually, I'll get it right.

What are you doing?

It's so good to see you.

I'm hungry. Can you give
me something to eat?

He says he's starving.

Is he hungry?

Let's take him to
a nice restaurant.

These pig trotters are delicious.

That's right...

A woman was staring at me.

Maybe she loves me.
She was very pretty.

What did he say?

He saw a woman looking at him.

That's great! And...?

In my country,
that means she loves him.

She must be in love with you.
That's great!

Let's toast with beer.

You are a very lucky man.

It's rude not to drink
when you're asked to.

Then you drink this tea.
Hang on.

This adds more flavour to it.

This is really part of China.
Taiwan, too.

It's no longer part
of Japan anymore.

I can't be responsible
for you in there.

I've got to go to the bathroom.

Is Zhou here?

Yes, he is.
Right up at the end.

What'll I do...?
What was that?!

I'm going.

It's dangerous.

Safer than staying with you.

Zhou Kai Meng


What were you doing?

Where is she?

Gone. She wanted
somebody else.

I gave you the introduction.
The rest is up to you.

Hey! I want my money back.
50,000 yen!

Forget the money.
Success depends on her feelings.

You're crazy!

I won't forget it!
You'll regret it.

Pity. It was the wrong guy.

Look, I'm really very sorry.

Still searching for him,
I see.

Let's be serious.

Why are you looking for him?

Nobody trusts me.

It's really very sad.

You believe me?

Tell me.
What happened?


He's my sister's boyfriend.

They were living together,
but he left.

That's why I'm looking for him.

Did you try the police?

Yes, but they wouldn't
listen to us.

People in weak positions
are treated badly everywhere.

You said it, kid.

You're Japanese, right?

But you get it, too.

Yes, Japanese can be cold,
very cold.

That's not my concern.

What are you saying?


This is Tokyo.
This is Japan.

No country is better off
than Japan...

And no other country is as
cold as Japan.

You can spend your life
just having fun here.

That's got nothing to do
with my search.

So give it up.

Looking for someone's no fun.

Even if you find him
you'll never be happy.

So what should I do?

Give up and do what?

I don't know.
I have no idea.

Ask the people in the streets.

Look at it.

All it is is just
bright city lights.

Tens of millions of people
live here.

Behind each of those windows.

You know who lives there?

They have such serious faces,

but they're practised liars.

Everything they do is bad.
Or stupid.

The most useful thing in this
country is the condoms.

What should you do?

I haven't a clue.

Foreigners can't live here
for a single day...

without lying to somebody.
You think so?

I can't be stupid like them,

so I do whatever it takes.

I'm not bad. And they won't
break me. No way!

I'll never escape from
this city.

"Exercise restraint in all things.

"Avoid self injury.

"Do not comment on the actions
of yourself or others.

"Never denounce others'
past deeds."

So said Confucius.

What was he trying to say?
It's too difficult for me.

I was thinking it over
as I rode the trains.

Pondering as I went around
and around the city.

No beginning, no end.
Just circular thoughts.

Only questions filling my head.

Tokyo is such a city.

It's tiring.
Tokyo has no endings.

It just goes around in circles
and confuses me.

So much happens in one week.

A guru turns out to be
a murderer.

A city of one million can
collapse easily.

A thoroughbred cat
screws a stray.

But you'll never find
what you're looking for.

Can I be with you forever?

Can I?

Just kidding. Relax.

That's a relief.

Look, why don't you go and
sleep on the couch?


He's your ex-boyfriend.

He's still there.
Damn pervert!

Really? That's bad.

You want a car for 200,000 yen?

I've got just the one for you.

Yeah, tomorrow. No problem.
I'll handle everything.

It's brand new.
Don't worry.

- Call him in.
- Yong.


Zhou's got some brilliant
new plan.

- The three of us.
- What?

- I want to start a new business.
- What business?

- Second hand car dealers.
- What about the financing?

I told you, there's someone
who wants to buy this place.

We can start by using the money
we make by selling up.

Let's do something big
for a change.

What's with this sudden
urge to change?

Business isn't bad;
we're doing well.

It's the first I've heard
that you want to sell up.

Believe me.
Trust me this time.

You handle the paperwork
and materials.

Ma, you buy cheap cars
and I'll sell them.

I can sell them to
my friends in Shanghai.

If I can't,
I'll sell them in Vietnam.

The paperwork won't be
that easy.

Maybe he's right;
it could make big money.

Then you do it, I won't...

C'mon, let's all do it.

Well, Zhou was the one who
started this business.

Give it some thought.

You want to give it a try?

Let's do it together.

Excuse me.
Take it.

But please don't
come here again.

Just this once.
Please don't come back.

Hey, baby. What's up?
Zhou was looking for you.

Really? Where?

Where was it...
Yeah, there.


You know.
Aren't you his girl?

So what?
Where is he anyway?

He's waiting.

Come on.

He's probably asleep.

Zhou, she's here.

Okay, go inside.


What are you doing?

- Stop it!
- Don't be like that, honey.

- Stop it!
- Where are you going?

Don't be silly.
It's on me.

I'll pay.
It's not much.

I'd better call in.
Just a minute.

What about this?

I just met your friend.
How could you be so cruel?!

It's all your fault!
Get here, now!

What happened?

Tell me.

Stop laughing!

You took my clothes.

I had to!
Mine are all torn!

Listen, baby, I'm sorry.

But he never washes his clothes.

Do you know where Zhou is?

That's my line! Look.

He sold me some crappy soap.

Don't stick to a man,
just because he screwed you.

A message from Zhou.

You've become a whore
for foreigners.

Here you go.

A weird guy was here
looking for you.

He had on this really
garish coat. Who is he?

He's an asshole, pervert,
drug addict...

chimpanzee, human garbage,
a narcissist!

He's just a shit.
Actually, he's a painter.

You love him.

Get real! Because of him,
I can't even go home.

He came to save you,
he said.

The power, baby...

Fate brings us together
again, Yoko.

You're alright.

I'll save you, Yoko.
Excuse me.

Should I call the cops?

No need. She'd stick with a guy,
even if he raped her.

Don't cry.

Are you going to Shanghai?

Enough. Tell me straight.
I feel sick.

You are sick.

You were deceived by a devil.

You still think so?
Then you're sick.

What makes you think I'm sick?

You don't realise it.
You've gone crazy.

So I'm telling you,
you're sick!

You think you're normal?

Where are you normal?

Get it? In Tokyo,
that is normal.

Your madness doesn't fit in here.

Who decided headbutts are normal?

You're behind the times.

I may be weird,
but in any age, I'm me.

I'm normal all the time.
I'm a normal person. What about you?

Who cares?
I don't give a shit!

You make me sick.
I feel like throwing up!

That's why I'm telling you
that I'll save you.

Don't come any closer, pervert!

You just make me blue.
That's all.

But blue's your favourite colour.

Are you sure?

I'm very sure about you.

What are you saying?

I just want to have fun.

I hate slow, predictable
creeps like you!

I don't need tenderness.
That's depressing.

What can you do for me?
You're impotent!

Why do you say I'm impotent?

You plan to hit me?
Let go!

I told you yesterday.
Don't you understand?

This is the very last time.

I got a job today.
Here, a present for you.

That's great.
I'm happy for you. Thank you.

But please don't hang about.
I'll get into trouble if you do.

The stars are so powerful.

The stars are still new to you,
at your age?

What are you doing?

Practising SM.

So far away...

You and me...
Our relationship will never change.

Guess I'd better become
a satellite, then.

And be in my orbit forever?

Gimme a break!

It's me who needs someone to orbit.


I'm a satellite, too.

We'll just crash into each other
and fly to pieces.

I need a sun.

I'll be your light.

Not while you're alive.
It's impossible.

Here's the money I got for
selling the place.

Be careful with it:
it's all we've got.

Don't worry.
I'll keep it for you.

Hi, there.

Do you still come here to shit?

I need another favour from you:

please introduce
a Japanese girl to me.

You still haven't found one?

- But I want to get married. Look...
- No, I can't any more.

One, two, three...
Is 50,000 enough?

Don't rush it.
Success will take time.

I'll call you when I find
a good girl for you.

She must be beautiful.

Okay. But there's no rush.

- Thank you.
- You're welcome. Bye.

Who's that?

Another sucker.

Brother, it's not good timing today.

Closing up shop?

- I'm starting a big business.
- Really?

By the way, do you know somebody
called Zhou Kai Meng?

I saw him yesterday.

Did you?

This is Zhou,
consultant to foreigners...

Hello. Kyoko, are you there?

I've found out where
Zhou Kai Meng is.

Hello. Are you there?

Okay. Straight ahead.

Ali said you looked deep
into his eyes.

That means you're betrothed to him.

What do you have to say?

You seriously think we're
getting married?

It's natural to look at someone.

Seriously, I thought he was
a shoplifter!

Ali, you made a mistake.
I'm really sorry, but that's it.

- Why hit me?
- You know why!

- We're not friends anymore.
- You asshole!

All you can do is fuck girls.

You lost all my goddamn money!

What do you mean?

Yong ran away with the money!

Go to Yong's place and
see for yourself.

I want my money back!

- What money?
- My money.

- Whose money did Yong take?
- All the money we got for selling up.

He's your friend, right?

I want my money back!


I don't understand...
What sister?

She has no sister.

It's lucky you didn't bring her here.

Quite frankly,
I never want to see her again.

She was nothing but trouble.

Have you... slept with her?

Now I realise how foolish I was.

She slept with everyone at my college.

I know you don't believe me.

She was going with me while
screwing a 70-year-old man.

The old man was paying her rent.

When she left,
she wanted money for an abortion.

What could I do?

I had no choice but to pay.

Why are you here?

Is this some scam with her
to blackmail me?

Do you have any evidence?

Evidence? Look, there's no point
in getting mad at me.

Okay, we both know she's
one hell of a lay, right?

Where are you going?

Get lost.

Let's get it on.

Hold me.

Get lost, I said.

Let's get laid...

or I'll kill myself.

Dead or alive,
what's the big deal?

I'll watch you die.
Go ahead.

Stab yourself and die!

Hi, honey!
How does this look?

What's wrong? Look at me.

I hardly know you,
but you've slept with everyone.

I never even suspected it.
You really fooled me.


What are you saying?

- I've had enough of you.
- Say it in Japanese!

- You lied to me.
- I didn't.

Are you sure?

You lied to me.
You deceived me.

I never lied!

What do you mean?

I met your boyfriend today.

I met Zhou Kai Meng.
You liar!

Zhou Kai Meng?

He lied to me.

He promised to marry me...

But he had another girl...

I didn't lie.

What did he tell you?

What did he say? Hey?

Damn! Damn!

It was all his doing!

I never lied!
Damn it!

"Hold no grudge against
heaven nor man.

"Discipline yourself.
Study that which is difficult.

"The heavens understand all."

So said Confucius...
And yes, it's true.

Why do you hasten?

Why do you complain?

I'm already 30 years old.

Do not rush. Do not rush.
Do not rush.

But I should accomplish something
while I'm still young.

Excuse me. I'm afraid you're
scaring off our customers.

Especially since you're a foreigner.

Don't make me call the police.

I'm sorry.

Are these yours?

I'm a gallery owner.

I'd like to hang them
in my gallery.

Hey, Zhou, you look glum.

It's not like you.

You're just the type of guy
who should play around.

No percentage in being serious.

"To know does not mean to like.

"To like does not mean to enjoy."

Isn't that what you said,

Thousands of years ago,
you taught us how to live...

- Long time no see.
- How are you? - Good.

I'll come see you tomorrow.

Great, I'll be waiting.

This is Zhou,
the consultant for foreigners.

You'll be charged for our services.

Any currency is acceptable.

Please leave your name,
number and the time you called.


Xiu Jian / Mika Takahashi

Yukio Yamato / KoKo

Ali Ahmed / Asami Kanai

Xia Pu / Jin Qiang Min

English translation:
Stuart J Walton & Mayumi Saito

Subtitles transcribed & timed
by lordretsudo


Produced by
Shimpei Okuda

Produced & Released by

Directed by
Yukinari Hanawa

Produced by
Hiroki Tanaka / Isao Yukisada

Screenplay by
Yukinari Hanawa / Xiu Jian