Dedicated to screening rare & significant films in their original format.

The Melbourne Cinémathèque is a not-for-profit, volunteer-run film society.

We hold screenings at The Australian Centre for the Moving image every Wednesday night for most of the year.

Admission is by membership, which can be obtained on a monthly or yearly basis.


June 27

7:00pm – A HEN IN THE WIND
Yasujiro Ozu (1948) 84 mins – Unclassified 15 +*

Ozu’s uncharacteristically realistic, dark, urgent and empathetic melodrama is a fascinating work of the immediate post-war Japanese cinema focusing on an impoverished dressmaker (beautifully embodied by Tanaka) who must eventually prostitute herself to pay for her invalided son’s hospital bills. When her husband (Shuji Sano) finally returns home from war service, she attempts to revitalise their family life while wrestling with her dark secret. Ozu’s second film after the end of hostilities provides a surprisingly frank and clear-eyed gaze upon an “unresolved emotional vortex of sex, guilt, honour and deception” (Kevin B. Lee).

Kinuyo Tanaka (1955) 106 mins – Unclassified 15 +*

Based on the autobiography of poet Fumiko Nakajo, who died of breast cancer in 1954 aged 31, this unflinching namida chodai (“tear-jerker”) is a rare view of Japanese society from a female perspective. Avoiding melodrama and sentimentality, it depicts a woman’s struggle through a mastectomy, divorce, single motherhood and growing independence in rural Japan. Shot using low angles, deep staging and frequent close-ups, Tanaka shows the influence of Ozu and Naruse on her filmmaking, while approaching the story with her signature lyricism and emotional impact. Starring Yumeji Tsukioka.

CTEQ Annotation:
Kinuyo Tanaka’s ‘The Eternal Breasts’ by Gwendolyn Audrey Foster.

35mm print courtesy of the Japan Foundation.


The Melbourne Cinémathèque started out as the Melbourne University Film Society (MUFS) in 1948 and changed its name to Cinémathèque in 1984.

The Melbourne Cinémathèque aims to present films in the medium they were created and as closely as possible to screen films the way they would have originally screened (i.e. big screen, celluloid prints, not video or DVD).

Programmes include a diverse selection of classic and contemporary films showcasing director retrospectives, special guest appearances and thematic series including archival material and new or restored prints.

We have on occasion hosted numerous seminars featuring renowned film scholars such as David Bordwell, Adrian Martin and Ian Christie. We are also dedicated to providing new annotations on the films we screen via the CTEQ annotations, hosted as a part of the quarterly online film journal Senses of Cinema.

The Melbourne Cinémathèque is self-administered and membership-driven relying on support from individuals, foundations, corporations and government funding to maintain its high standard of excellence. If you would like to be involved, or to offer donations or sponsorship, please contact us.

Presented by The Melbourne Cinémathèque with the Australian Centre for the Moving Image.

Curated by the Melbourne Cinémathèque.

Curatorial Committee: Michael Koller, Michelle Carey, Adrian Danks, Eloise Ross and Cerise Howard.

Supported by Screen Australia and Film Victoria.


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NOTICE: The committee of The Melbourne Cinémathèque wishes to make some changes to our constitution, however, to do that we now have to conform to the model constitution in the 2012 Act, so a number of other changes are also required.

Here is a copy of the constitution with the changes on RED.

The Melbourne Cinémathèque Constitution 2018.

We wish to pass these changes at the AGM on Wednesday May 30, at 6:40pm.

Please read the RED stuff and consider. It won’t take long. Then come along to the AGM.