Review: Dreams On Fire – World Premieres at Glasgow Film Festival – Saturday 6th March 2021

Dreams on Fire Film Poster

I’ve never seen a film about an aspiring dancer set in Japan, or in any country other than the UK, the US or Europe – what a refreshing change!

As an ex-professional dancer, myself and now a dance school owner & choreographer, I know all too well, the barriers that any aspiring dancer can come up against, from disapproving parents to the cut-throat world of auditions.

It was lovely to see the various creative sub-cultures collide in this film, the film gives us a taste of the fashion, drag, club and music scenes in Japan alongside the dance industry.

This film has it’s World Premiere on Saturday 6th March at the Glasgow Film Festival 2021.


An aspiring dancer, Yume runs off to Tokyo to pursue her dream of being a dancer after opposition from her family. On arrival, she has a shock at how difficult it can be and the size and talent of the competition, but her passion for dance is strong and she’ll do whatever she can to obtain the job of her dreams.

There’s no official trailer yet, but take a look a the stars Bambi Naka alongside her long-time dance partner, Aya, perform on Madonna’s Rebel World Tour

Bambi & Aya perform with Madonna on her Rebel World Tour

My Thoughts

Like I previously stated, this is a refreshing take on the aspiring dancer movies, it has a Japanese flavour, but it shows that no matter where this story is told, dance is universal and we all face the same oppositions.

The first thing about this film is that it feels quite long, it is 2 hours and 3mins, but still managed to seem longer, there are a few artistic scenes that didn’t really add to the narrative and could have easily been edited to shorter cuts or omitted completely to be honest.

One of my favourite scenes was in the nightclub, when Yume first arrives in Tokyo and she enters a dance contest, I was blown away by the talent of the dancers and even more amazed by their various styles – there was Waccking, Locking & Popping, Vogueing amongst other styles – the scene really is brilliant.

Dreams on Fire Film – Club Dance Contest Scene

When Yume joins the local dance studio she meets likeminded souls and makes friends, and is even starting to gain some confidence in her skills.

Dreams on Fire Film

I love how realistic her naivety is when she get her first job and has to deal with a few unsavoury characters.

Yume’s First Boss – Masahiro Takashima

Yume is brilliantly portrayed by Bambi Naka, it’s hard to believe that this is her debut feature film role.

The story is gripping, you want to see what happens next and the choreography is fantastic – such an entertaining film – music, lights, fashion – it has it all, it’s a creatives’ dream!

This film speaks to the whole dance community worldwide.

A film by Phillipe McKie who wrote, edited and directed the film, what an amazing job he has done – this film is for all those who need some inspiration to keep chasing their dreams.

Click Here to watch the film at the Glasgow Film Festival 2021 – 6th – 9th March 2021


Chanel x

Chanel Williams

Dreams on Fire Film

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