Four students in Shanghai have recently finished university. All are unemployed. Xu contemplates suicide but his friend Zhao talks him out of it. Zhao lives in a shabby room with just a flimsy wall of planks separating him from the room behind. Miss Yang, in town to take a factory job, moves in behind. Her nails into the wall knock Zhao's photos down. The unseen neighbours start playing tit for tat... Zhao gets a job as proofreader at a newspaper. He sees that pretty girl on the tram to work every day. He doesn't know her, but it's Miss Yang... Zhao is assigned to cover labour conditions for the paper. He is sent to a factory, the one where Miss Yang works...