Spider Lilies (film)

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Spider Lilies
Spider Lilies film poster.jpg
Spider Lilies poster
Traditional 刺青
Mandarin Cì Qīng
Directed by Zero Chou
Produced by Lin Yun-hou
Written by Singing Chen
Starring Rainie Yang
Isabella Leong
Ivy Chen
Shen Jian-hung
Kris Shie
Shih Yuen-chien
Music by Hwang Chien-hsun
Chang Chien-yu
Cinematography Hoho Liu
Edited by Hsiao Ju-kuan
Distributed by Central Motion Pictures Corporation
Release dates
  • 30 March 2007 (2007-03-30)
Running time
94 minutes
Country Taiwan
Language Mandarin

Spider Lilies (Chinese: 刺青; pinyin: Cì Qīng; literally: "Tattoo") is a 2007 Taiwanese lesbian drama film. It is the second feature-length film by director Zero Chou, and stars Rainie Yang and Isabella Leong in the lead roles. Spider Lilies was screened at the 2007 Berlin International Film Festival, where it won the Teddy Award for best feature film.[1] It was released in the United States by Wolfe Video on 6 May 2008.[2]

The theme song "小茉莉" Xiao Mo Li sung by Rainie Yang was nominated in 2007 for Best Original Song at the 44th Golden Horse Awards.[3]

Plot summary[edit]

Jade is a webcam girl, who broadcasts herself nightly on the internet to anonymous users. She seeks a tattoo, which leads her to the studio of tattoo artist Takeko, who also happens to be Jade's childhood crush. Jade becomes entranced by a large tattoo of golden flowers—spider lilies—on Takeko's arm. She wants the same design, but Takeko refuses, telling her that the flowers are cursed.

Takeko's father, who was killed in an earthquake, had the same tattoo on his arm. Her younger brother witnessed the incident and was traumatised by it, left with no memory except for the image of the flowers. Takeko decided to get the same tattoo, in the hope that it would help her brother's recovery.

Nevertheless, Takeko finds herself drawn to Jade, and begins designing a new tattoo for her.

Meanwhile, a young police officer is trying to ambush Jade and the rest of the girls working in the same website. However, he takes to speaking to her, listening to her childhood stories and connecting with her, thereby slowing down the investigation he is supposed to be working on. Eventually he falls in love with her, trying to tell her to get out before it's too late and before she's caught. He blurts out that he loves her, and Jade, mistaking him for Takeko, goes to her.

When one of Takeko's customers gets into a fight and loses his arm, Takeko sends him to the hospital and forgets to pick up her brother. Desperate and frightened, he goes out into the street to look for her, and recovers his memory just before falling down a steep hill.

Takeko finds her brother in the hospital, where he has slipped into a severe coma. Devastated and guilt-stricken, she sends a farewell message to Jade saying that she will not be able to finish Jade's tattoo.

Later, Jade decides to go online and wait for Takeko. At this time, the policeman finally confesses his true identity to Jade and tells her that she must get offline immediately. She cries, realizing it was not Takeko who had confessed love to her earlier.

Eventually, Takeko's brother awakes from his coma with his memory intact. Joyful Takeko sends Jade another message apologizing, and saying that she will wait for her in the tattoo shop. The last image of the film is footage of Jade, coming to meet Takeko.



  1. ^ Sonia Kolesnikov-Jessop, "In Taiwan, 'Spider Lilies' fuels a small gay renaissance", International Herald Tribune, June 7, 2007. Retrieved on July 5, 2007.
  2. ^ "Wolfe Video - Buy Spider Lilies from Wolfe Video". Wolfe Video. Retrieved 2008-04-22. 
  3. ^ (Chinese) Golden Horse Awards 44th Golden Horse Awards winners and nomination list Retrieved 2011-05-31

External links[edit]