Adapted from the wildly popular manga by Mari Yamazaki and winner of the 2010 Manga Grand Prix and the 14th Osamu Tezuka Cultural Prize - Short Story Award
In this hit comedy about bathing culture we are introduced to second-century Roman architect Lucius (Hiroshi Abe). Criticized for his outdated building styles, Lucius is in danger of losing his job unless he can come up with a suitable design for the Emperor's new bathhouse.
Overwhelmed by the task at hand, Lucius visits a spa in order to collect his thoughts. As he is relaxing in the water he gets pulled into the drainage and through a time portal. He emerges from the water in a modern Japanese public bathhouse. There he meets an aspiring young manga artist, Mami (Aya Ueto), along with others of the "flat-faced clan" (i.e. the Japanese).
Impressed by the innovations of Japan's bathing culture, Lucius borrows their ideas and brings them back to ancient Rome. As he goes back and forth between the two places, his reputation as a genius begins to grow...
For his role as Lucius, Hiroshi Abe won Best Actor in the 2012 Japan Academy Awards and the Blue Ribbon Awards