Kama Sutra: A Tale of Love

MPAA Rating: R

Entertainment: +2

Content: -3 1/2

Editor's Note: This film is Not Rated by the MPAA.

Growing up in 16th century India, Princess Tara (Sarita Choudhury) and servant girl Maya (Indira Varma) have been friends. However, Tara has maintained a superior position in their relationship because of her higher social class. Now that they have become young women, Tara is about to marry a young king, Raj Singh (Naveen Andrews) when jealousy rears its ugly head. On the evening before the wedding, Maya enters Singh's bed chamber and seduces him. She delights in revealing her conquest to Tara after the wedding, but she's exiled from the village as a result. Maya is homeless until she meets Jai Kumar (Ramon Tikaram), a court sculptor fascinated by her beauty. He brings her to a woman who teaches aspiring courtesans from the ancient book, "Kama Sutra.'' Maya and Jai become lovers, but soon he sends her away, fearing he has lost his artistic sense because he can't get her image out of his mind. Maya learns the lessons of love from "Kama Sutra" and becomes chief courtesan to Raj Singh. This sets the stage for various romantic rivalries and deadly consequences. The plot never rises above the soap opera level, and surprisingly the sex scenes are quite tedious. Anyone expecting a colorful dramatization of the legendary Indian sex manual is going to be very disappointed.

That's not to say that Kama Sutra is lacking in erotic material. Sex is implied when Maya seduces Singh, but some brief scenes with male and female nudity show Singh and Tara having sex for the first time, along with graphic sex between Maya and Jai. Female breast and frontal nudity is also present in scenes involving passionate kissing and caressing. At one point Maya even kisses Tara's nude body. The film has no offensive language, but one instance of severe violence as Tara attempts suicide by cutting her wrist. Sentenced to execution, Jai is dragged through the village by an elephant and later it's suggested that his head is crushed. With its uninspired story and overwhelming emphasis on sexual material, Kama Sutra is lacking in any redeeming value.

Preview Reviewer: Mark Perry
Trimark Pictures, 2644 30th St., Santa Monica, CA 90405

The following categories contain objective listings of film content which contribute to the subjective numeric Content ratings posted to the left and on the Home page.

Crude Language: None

Obscene Language: None

Profanity: None

Violence: Many times - Moderate and Severe (men wrestle, knife fight with bloody cuts, woman slaps man, woman treated roughly, severed head shown, man dragged across ground for long distance, man's execution suggested, woman cuts wrists in suicide attempt)

Sex: Few (3) times - Twice graphic with nudity, once with near nudity; implied once within bedroom scene

Nudity: Many times (female frontal nudity twice, breast nudity four times, male rear nudity twice, several erotic statues); near nudity many times (couple in bedroom scene, Indian women wear low-cut and midriff baring clothes)

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: Several times (passionate kissing, body caressing, scene in brothel)

Drugs: Few times (opium smoking)

Other: None

Running Time: 114 minutes
Intended Audience: Adults

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