The film depicts a powerful dramatic portrait of a not-so-ordinary dysfunctional urban family. In Taiwan, Xiao-kang, a young man in his early 20s, shares apartment with his parents, but the three of them rarely speak to each other. Xiao-kang is plagued by severe neck pain. His father is bedeviled by water first leaking into his bedroom and then flooding the apartment; rain is incessant. Xiao-kang's mother is overcome by sexual longing for her son, sometimes making seemingly incestuous overtures. They try virtually every intervention for Xiao-kang's neck: Western medicine, a chiropractor, acupuncture, an herbal doctor, and a faith healer, Master Liu. Are the family's silent dynamics and Xiao-kang's neck pain connected? And what about the body floating in the Tamsui River: is everything dead?