A Taiwanese graduate becomes embroiled in the sex trade in Jenny Lu’s angst-ridden study of the immigrant experience

First-time feature director Jenny Lu directs this intensely felt personal drama about the immigrant experience in the UK and the accompanying state of invisibility – part survival strategy, part byproduct of prejudice and hypocrisy.

Tina, played by Teresa Daley, is a young Taiwanese arts graduate living with her British boyfriend in London, frantically sending out CVs, getting no job offers and desperately short on cash. Then she gets word that someone needs a “receptionist”, but not at the kind of hipster media company she once yearned for. Tina has to be the “receptionist” for a brothel run out of a rented suburban semi by the motherly Lily (Sophie Gopsill), which employs two cynical yet melancholy sex workers (played by Amanda Fan and Chen Shiang-chyi, the latter a veteran of movies by Edward Yang and Tsai Ming-liang).

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