Mui (Tran Nu Yên-Khê) started working as a maid when she was 10. Now she’s 20 and her life is about to change: she’s fallen in love with the man she works for, a pianist she’s known since she was a child. This man is still engaged, though. One day, Mui finds a red lipstick on the man’s bed, an object which makes her discover the power of seduction.
The sleek tortoiseshell black case contains Shiseido perfecting lipstick. The packaging is typical of the late 1980s/early 1990s: for example, it appears in the advertising campaign of the Eclat Futur 1991 collection.
This choice is not accurate from a historical point of view: Shiseido lipsticks had a very different packaging in the years in which this part of the film is set (the 1960s).
In any case, it’s a lovely make-up moment. The bright red shade that Mui wears has a metallic sheen which beautifully matches her silk blouse.