Marino Pacileo (Toni Servillo), a cashier who works for a prison in Naples, goes by the nickname Gorbaciof -- the Italian pronunciation of Gorbachev -- on account of the big birthmark on his forehead. He is a somber man whose routine life consists only of work and gambling, the latter which he takes no less seriously than his attraction to Lila (Mi Yang), an illegal Chinese immigrant with whose father (Japanese actor Hal Yamanaouchi) he regularly plays poker. Lila returns his feelings, and though they don't speak each other's languages, a tentative courtship begins. Gorbaciof takes Lila to the airport, to window shop and watch the planes. One night, they break into the city zoo. Their wordless interactions, stolen glances and furtive smiles are unexpectedly tender and paint a surprisingly delicate inner life of this gruff, solitary man. But little does Lila know that her strong and protective "tiger" habitually borrows from the prison safe to buy her gifts and feed his gambling addiction or that his dream of creating a brighter future for the couple will lead to a dangerous decision