Holy Smoke!

MPAA Rating: R

Entertainment: +1

Content: -4

TITANIC star Kate Winslett plays Ruth, an Australian who visits India on a holiday with friends and falls under the hypnotic spell of a Hindu guru. Ruths horrified mother (Julie Hamilton) brings her sari-wrapped, chosen daughter back to Sydney where Ruth is soon turned over to a de-programmer, P.J. Waters (Harvey Keitel). Unattractive, middle-aged P.J. takes a defiant Ruth to a shack in the Australian outback for a three-day session. Right away this one-on-one confrontation becomes a war of wills. Just when it looks like P.J. has earned his $10,000 fee, Ruth gains control, and he melts. Seeing a grown man allow a woman to dress him in a red velvet mini-skirted dress and red lipstick, then chase her through the desert is enough to turn your stomach. HOLY SMOKE, unbelievably presented as a dramatic love story, makes you wonder what the writer/director Jane Campion smokes. However artistic, it should suffer a quick burnout at the box office.

Every conceivable offensive element has been mixed into this mess that should be rated NC-17. Homosexual behavior includes Ruths homosexual brother kissing his partner and Ruth kissing and caressing another woman on the dance floor of a pub. Ruth walks seductively around the deprogramming shack stark naked in a prolonged scene that evolves into graphic sex between her and P.J. Unconventional sex between Ruth and P.J., as well as P.J. and Ruths shameless sister-in-law adds to the films pornographic content. Along with the sexually explicit material are 25 obscenities and a few regular profanities. Eastern mystic religious rites of transcendental meditation, women falling under the spell of a spiritual guru, drinking and smoking mind-altering drugs are all presented in a positive light. Even Ruths mother follows her daughter back to India to embrace the Hindu culture. HOLY SMOKE is an insulting, pornographic heap of voodoo.

Preview Reviewer: Mary Draughon
Miramax Pictures, 375 Greenwich, NY, NY 10013

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: Few (3) times - Moderate

Obscene Language: Many (25) times - F-word 8, s-word 10, other 7

Profanity: Many (10) times - Regular 1 (Good J), Exclamatory 9

Violence: Few times - Moderate (man accidentally bloodies his nose, woman hit by man, thrown in trunk of car)

Sex: Several times (unconventional sex twice without nudity; graphic with full frontal female nudity and rear male nudity; once with motions and sounds)

Nudity: Few times (prolonged full female frontal, breast nudity, rear male; Near Nudity: Many times (women in low-cut revealing necklines; man in tightfitting briefs)

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: Many times (woman describes sexual fantasies and her sex life; woman gropes man under table; suggestive dancing, passionate kissing)

Drugs: Several times (Indian rituals include mind-altering drugs, others drink, smoke dope and drive; drunkenness and drinking in pub)

Other: Nude woman urinates; illusion of Hindu deity beckons dying man; eastern religion practices of meditation, woman overcome by hypnotic stare of guru; frenetic drug-like state among religious recruits

Running Time: 114 minutes
Intended Audience: Porn fans

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