skip to Main Content

Steam Dreams Film Screenings

Soak into Cinema one Film at a time

February 24 – May 19, 2021

From February to May, soak into Japanese cinema with a selection of films centred around sentō, screening monthly for free as part of the Steam Dreams Event Series

Kicking off the film series in February is Thermae Romae, a time-travelling bathtime adventure based on the hit manga series of the same name. In March, prepare your tissues for Her Love Boils Bathwater, a family drama about a terminally ill mother searching for her missing husband in order to restart the family’s sentō business. Following in April, enjoy Melancholic, a cross-genre film about a hopeless graduate whose casual job scrubbing tiles at a local sentō turns into murderous work. Rounding off the film series in May is Mio on the Shore, a heart-warming story about an orphaned girl who finds her way in life through the people she meets working at the local bathhouse.

Thermae Romae (テルマエ・ロマエ)

Dir Hideki Takeuchi / 2012 / 108 mins / Cast: Hiroshi Abe, Aya Ueto, Masachika Ichimura / Japanese with English subtitles / PG
February 24, 6:30pm – 8:18pm

When Roman architect Lucius’ bathhouse plans are rejected because they’re not modern enough, he faces a crisis of confidence. But with his discovery of a time-travel portal between ancient Rome and present-day Japan (veritably overflowing with modern bathhouses), it seems that Lucius’ luck might just turn around.

Get your toga on and prepare for a hilarious comedy that will have you in stitches! Based on the smash-hit manga series of the same title.

Her Love Boils Bathwater (湯を沸かすほどの熱い愛)

Dir Ryota Nakano / 2016 / 125 mins / Cast: Rie Miyazawa, Hana Sugisaki, Joe Odagiri, Tori Matsuzaka / Japanese with English subtitles / UNCL 15+
March 24, 6:30pm – 8:35pm 

Single mother Futaba grapples with the challenge of raising an adolescent daughter who’s severely bullied at school. Despite their ups and downs, life at home is generally peaceful. However their situation takes a complicated turn when Futaba collapses at work and is diagnosed with terminal cancer. With only a few months to live, Futaba attempts to tie up loose ends to ensure her daughter Azumi is provided for. Futaba starts off by tracking down her ex-husband, Kazuhiro, who abandoned them some years ago. Next on her bucket list, Futaba then announces that they will resurrect the family’s disused public bathhouse.

Melancholic (メランコリック)

Dir Seiji Tanaka / 2018 / 113 mins / Cast: Yoji Minagawa, Yoshitomo Isozaki, Mebuki Yoshida / Japanese with English subtitles / UNCL 15+ (contains strong themes and violence)
April 22, 6:30pm-8:23pm
*Please note this screening date has changed due to unforeseen circumstances

Despite having a degree from a prestigious university, Kazuhiko is unemployed and living with his parents with no plans for the future. Having no work experience and a lacklustre attitude toward life, the strange, awkward and socially inept Kazuhiko eventually finds a job at the local bathhouse scrubbing tiles. While his days are rosier now with the regular stream of income, suspicious interactions between his boss and coworker lead him to question the use of his workplace outside of hours. On one particular night, he is accidentally caught witnessing a yakuza execution in the bathhouse. What begins as a film about a lonely ill-fitting man drifting along the outskirts of society, quickly develops a cross-genre edginess that is viscerally thrilling, darkly funny and heartwarming.

Mio on the Shore (わたしは光をにぎっている)

Dir Ryutaro Nakagawa / 2019 / 96 mins / Cast: Honoka Matsumoto, Daiichi Watanabe, Eri Tokunaga, Ken Mitsuishi / Japanese with English subtitles / UNCL 15+
May 19, 6:30pm-8:01pm

Mio is only 20 years old and has already lost her parents. Together with her grandmother she runs a ryokan (traditional Japanese inn) in Nagano but as her grandmother falls ill and has to be hospitalised, Mio is forced to leave their ryokan and find a new livelihood. She reluctantly travels to Tokyo to stay with her father’s old friend Kyosuke. As she starts helping him at his sentō, she begins to rebuild her life one day at a time. However, her everyday life is once again shattered when she learns Kyosuke’s sentō is on the verge of demolition due to redevelopment in the district.


Presented by

Venue Partner


February 24, 2021 (Wednesday)
Thermae Romae (PG)

Bookings Full

March 24, 2021 (Wednesday)
Her Love Boils Bathwater (UNCL 15+)

Bookings Closed

April 21, 2021 (Wednesday)
April 22, 2021 (Thursday) 
Melancholic (UNCL 15+)

Bookings Closed

May 19, 2021 (Wednesday)
Mio on the Shore (UNCL 15+)

Bookings Full

Free; Bookings required
Online bookings open at 10am on the scheduled day.

If you are no longer able to attend your booked screening, please cancel your booking so that others may attend. This event follows government COVID-19 regulations and as a result has extremely limited capacity.
For the safety of yourself and others, please stay home if you’re feeling unwell.

Palace Central
Level 3, Central Park
28 Broadway, Chippendale NSW 2008

(02) 8239 0055

Header image: © 2019 WIT STUDIO / Tokyo New Cinema

Back To Top