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Holy Smoke (1999)

R  |   |  Drama, Comedy  |  18 February 2000 (USA)
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Ratings: 5.9/10 from 11,712 users   Metascore: 57/100
Reviews: 190 user | 87 critic | 30 from

While on a journey of discovery in exotic India, beautiful young Ruth Barron falls under the influence of a charismatic religious guru. Her desperate parents then hire PJ Waters, a macho ... See full summary »


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2 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Julie Hamilton ...
Sophie Lee ...
Tim Robertson ...
George Rafael ...
Yani (as George Mangos)
Kerry Walker ...
Les Dayman ...
Bill-Bill (as Leslie Dayman)
Samantha Murray ...
Stan (as Austen Tayshus)
Simon Anderson ...
Eva Martin ...


While on a journey of discovery in exotic India, beautiful young Ruth Barron falls under the influence of a charismatic religious guru. Her desperate parents then hire PJ Waters, a macho cult de-programmer who confronts Ruth in a remote desert hideaway. But PJ quickly learns that he's met his match in the sexy, intelligent and iron-willed Ruth! Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


He had only one thing on his mind... but so did she! See more »


Drama | Comedy

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong sexuality and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

18 February 2000 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Holy Smoke!  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$33,307 (USA) (3 December 1999)


£138,350 (UK) (7 April 2000)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


On a fellow actor's advice, Kate Winslet drank 3 vodka-and-tonics for a scene involving her being drunk. See more »


When PJ is driving in the red outfit, he is on the left-hand "driver" side. When the lady gets in the car, he then has switched to the right-hand side (still driving). The lady is then in the left driver side where PJ was originally. See more »


PJ Waters: You know, you'd be better off crying.
See more »


Referenced in Jersey Girl (2004) See more »


Jaag Musafir
(Music by Raghunath Seth (as Pt. Raghunath Seth) / Lyrics by Narayan Agarwal)
Performed by Hari Om Sharan & Nandini Sharan
Courtesy of Tips Cassettes & Records Co.
See more »

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User Reviews

Very good subject but the movie lacks depth
23 September 2004 | by (Finland) – See all my reviews

The interesting and important themes dealt with make this movie well worth watching.

First you think that it will be a simple educational movie about cult addiction and recovery - but then the plot starts to get complicated. Maybe even a bit too complicated, because the end part of the movie feels rather artificial.

The story tells about very important and even universal things: meaning of life, feelings of emptiness, relationships of leaders and their pupils, human nature, need of love. But though those themes are thought provoking, the movie itself lacks a lot as a movie. I cannot help thinking that someone could have made this into a much better movie (shouldn't be the fault of the makers though, many of them have had good artistic achievements).

The persons lack enough depth. The truly complicated nature of people is not - after all - portraited realistically enough in this movie. Because of that you never start to take the movie seriously enough despite the many dead serious themes dealt with.

Very difficult movie to rate. In purely artistic sense, the movie: acting, directing, filming etc. is worth maybe 6/10, but because of the important thought provoking subject, I give it a much better 8/10.

31 of 45 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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