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Review: Hideous Kinky

Rating: **


Anyone who misses the hazy '60s and '70s or wants a five-dollar trip to Morocco after reading Victoria's articles should see this movie, set mainly in 1972 Marrakech and filmed on location.

You can meander across Morocco with a 25-year-old British hippie (Kate Winslet) who has left cold, rainy London and her cold, absent-minded husband to drag her two little girls, Bea (Bella Riza) and Lucy (Carrie Mullan) through this muddle of culture, language, dust and people. We're not sure why she's there; she thinks she's looking for truth, and speaks in spurts about poetry, passion, revolution. Her children make more sense than she does.

But, if you fast-forward through the nonsense, the patchwork of scenery and costumes is worth the trip. Beautiful fabrics, textures, colors and shapes clothe Winslet, the girls and mom's Moroccan free-love interest (played by Bilal al Hamal). Rich rugs dress the floors of homes and hotels; filmy screens separate rooms; carved arches, banisters and stairways punctuate structures. Arty wooden panels, intricately tiled floors and earthy pottery complete the authentic set.

Outdoors, you can taste the dust everywhere; smell the food cooking in the streets, and imagine countless other odors in this hot, rainless place. Your ears are regularly assaulted by the jabbering and shrieking and chanting of crowds. Every now and then, nasty old camels show up to pile on another layer of grime and provide a little levity. And periodically, you'll get glimpses into the country's spectacular hills, plains and seas, along with backdrops of royal palms and desert "monuments".

Bringing back the era of the '60s and '70s, too, is a mixed Middle-Eastern and Western soundtrack. Hypnotic Arab-African rhythms and lazy North American folk songs complete the set. And when it's over, you really feel as though you've "been through the desert on a horse with no name..."

This 1998 drama is now on video.

For more information, visit http://us.imdb.com/Title?0136244

Want to read more about Morocco? Go to our "Destinations & Experiences" section on Morocco.

Ratings guidelines:

***** Can't imagine a better job
**** Good, but could be improved
*** Close, but no cigar
** Mediocre and hopefully cheap
* Don't waste your time