Director: Philippe McKie
Writer: Philippe McKie (Screenplay)
Starring: Bambi Naka, Akaji Maro, Ikuyo Kuroda, Masahiro Takashima, Haruka Kurebayashi, Rinomaur, Okuda Saki,
Plot: A vibrant and intoxicating look into Japanese dance and subculture communities.
Runtime: 2 Hours 3 Minutes
There may be spoilers in the rest of the review
Story: Dreams on Fire starts as we meet Yume (Naka) a young lady that witnesses dancing and looks to go against her family’s wishes to want to pursue this career, running away from them to Tokyo. Yume left with little money takes any jobs she can find, with her free time going into learning dance at studios.
The long Yume spends in Tokyo the more she learns about the vast number of styles she could learn, opening up doors she never imagined, styles, music everything becomes fresh to the young lady, who is living the dream of any aspiring dancer.
Thoughts on Dreams on Fire
Characters & Performances – Yume is a young lady that becomes obsessed with becoming a dancer, a choice her family disapprove of. She runs away from home heading to Tokyo to chase her dream, where she gets to learn about the different dance techniques. She does start out shy, becoming more confident as the time spent there increases, meeting new people who will show her the way to enjoy everything. Yume is the character we would love to be, someone who dreams big and follows through with their journey. Bambi Naka is great in the leading role here, showing her own dancing abilities along with the fascinated expressions of learning.
Story – The story here follows a young woman that dreams of being a dancer and to do so, she must run away from home to learn more about the art she is desperate to be part of, learning to find her place in the world along the way. This is a story that will give us a journey through the culture in one city, following Yume as she learns about different music, dance techniques and styles, seemingly from every different corner she turns. The idea that we can find so much culture so close together is brilliant, as it helps us understand just how important difference of opinions are, different tastes and experiences. It is a brilliant journey and one you can truly see the writer/director Philippe McKie has been through himself.
Themes – Dreams on Fire brings nearly every genre of music to play here, each will offer a different style of dance, each one sees Yume become more engaged in what she is wanting to learn. The Tokyo backdrop does show us just how much is crammed into one city, offering something for everyone to enjoy along the way.