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Underground Fragrance

Producers Tsai Ming-Liang


Yong Le, a young migrant worker from the south, salvages furniture to re-sell. He lives in a room in Beijing’s Underground City, a labyrinthian former bomb shelter that serves as cheap housing for people looking for opportunity in the big city. But after a bad work accident leaves him temporarily blind, he has to use a rope to find his way around the dimly lit basement halls, until the night meets a girl at the other end of his rope… Xiao Yun, is a migrant too. She is desperately trying to find new employment so that she can leave her job pole dancing at nights. Her meeting with Yong Le and their burgeoning relationship encourages her to hunt for a more respectable job. At ground level, old Lao Jin has been struggling for years to get a decent compensation deal from the authorities who want to demolish his house. His health is declining and his savings are evaporating. And he’s counting on Yong Le to sell his furniture at a good price. Three lives propelled by the “Chinese Dream” intermingle in the vast melting pot of the Beijing metropolis.

About The Team

Pengfei Song (Director) was born into a family of Peking Opera performers in Beijing. After graduating from high school, he went to Paris to study film directing at L’Institute International Image et du Son. Upon his return, he discovered a new China, which inspired him to develop Underground Fragrance to reflect the changing lives of the people of Beijing. The project, which will be his first feature, was selected for Cinemart and the TorinoFilmLab in 2011.