In 1937, two boys, lovers, escape the Peking Opera, only to find that life within it, though cruel, was also too sheltered to prepare them for the brutal streets of Hong Kong, on which they are nearly killed on their first night of freedom. Fortunately, a wealthy playboy rescues them, and they briefly enjoy luxury before the Japanese bomb China, dealing the lovers an unendurable blow. Cut to Hollywood in 1945; to Nan, a tough lesbian writer in love with a beautiful, straight starlet; and to a tragic, bloody murder. Why is that stuntman--the Chinese guy, Jimmy-- so intent on helping Nan? Finally, nearer the present, meet gorgeous, outrageously talented Jake Ryan, terrified that the studio will discover he is gay, who keeps seeing the ghost of an old Chinese guy.
Brite and Faust's trio of bright, edgy, seemingly discrete stories are actually interwoven by red threads of passion and violence and the spirit of one quiet Chinese man.