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Holy Smoke

Directed by Jane Campion
Australia, USA
115 minutes
The Australian outback sets the scene for a hallucinatory battle of wills between Kate Winslet and Harvey Keitel, in Campion’s stimulating, offbeat blend of spirituality and sexuality.
Returning to the darkly comic territory of Sweetie but moving the sibling dynamic offscreen (Campion co-wrote the script with her sister Anna Campion), Holy Smoke stars Keitel as a deprogrammer sent to Australia by the parents of Ruth (Winslet, sporting a pitch-perfect Aussie accent), alarmed that their daughter has embraced a guru’s teachings a little too devoutly on her recent trip to India. A battle of the sexes ensues in this wild and surreal film, which Campion says was inspired by her interest in “the question of how you have a spiritual life in the ’90s and in the connections of spirituality, eroticism, and love.” Screening in 35mm. 
Original in every sense, this often-difficult film about family, relationships, sexual politics, spiritual questing, faith and obsession further explores the director's abiding fascinations in excitingly unconventional terms.
David Rooney, Variety
At once hilarious and serious, cruel and tender, and bristling with vitality, Holy Smoke is the right movie for the millennium, envisioning new possibilities in the way people view and relate to one another.
Kevin Thomas, The Los Angeles Times

Films showing at this event:

Passionless Moments
Winner of the AFI Award for Best Experimental Film, Campion’s collection of awkwardly familiar and embarrassing vignettes, co-written and directed with Gerard Lee (Top of the Lake), went on to wow Cannes audiences. SFF 1985.


Sat 17 Jun
Art Gallery of New South Wales
Assisted Listening
Past Event Cancel
Program Strand
Jane Campion Retrospective
Australia, USA
In English
Jane Campion
Jan Chapman
Kate Winslet, Harvey Keitel, Pam Grier
Jane Campion, Anna Campion
Dion Beebe
Veronika Jenet
Women Directors, Australian Films, Retrospective, Indian subcontinent
Company Credits
Rights Holder: Park Circus. Print Source: National Film and Sound Archive
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