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Short Cut to Nirvana: Kumbh Mela

Short Cut to Nirvana: Kumbh Mela (2004)



Average Rating: 6.3/10
Reviews Counted: 33
Fresh: 24 | Rotten: 9

Short on depth but amazingly insightful, this glimpse into one of the world's largest spritual gatherings is worth viewing for the eye-opening experience alone.


Average Rating: 6.4/10
Critic Reviews: 14
Fresh: 10 | Rotten: 4

Short on depth but amazingly insightful, this glimpse into one of the world's largest spritual gatherings is worth viewing for the eye-opening experience alone.



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Average Rating: 3.8/5
User Ratings: 606

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Movie Info

For over two millennia pilgrims and gurus from across the globe have been coming together every twelve years to attend the Kumbh Mela - a celebration that is widely considered to be the largest gathering of humanity on the planet. Though the Kumbh Mela has been shrouded in mystery in the eyes of western civilization, the secrets of this rapturous gathering are now revealed as cameras take a look into the very heart of the festival and speak with those in attendance about what the Kumbh Mela

Oct 25, 2005


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All Critics (37) | Top Critics (17) | Fresh (24) | Rotten (9) | DVD (2)

Unless you're utterly fascinated by the minutiae of Hinduism, you may find yourself wishing for more story to this story -- and this film does not oblige.

July 9, 2005 Full Review Source: Chicago Tribune
Chicago Tribune
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Too scattershot to make a real point about the true nature of a spiritual path.

April 29, 2005 Full Review Source: Seattle Times
Seattle Times
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A documentary chronicle of the 2001 Kumbh Mela, a sort of spiritual Woodstock held every 12 years near Allahabad, India.

April 15, 2005
New York Post
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Mostly, Benazzo and Day leave us alone to take in the extraordinary sights and sounds.

April 15, 2005 Full Review Source: New York Daily News
New York Daily News
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While this documentary about a religious pilgrimage in India feels haphazard and superficial, the glimpses it offers are never less than fascinating.

April 14, 2005 Full Review Source: New York Times
New York Times
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The directors and subjects evince enough contagious ecstasy to gladden the most angst-ridden Western hearts.

April 12, 2005 Full Review Source: Village Voice
Village Voice
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As entertaining as it is illuminating.

October 20, 2005 Full Review Source: Orlando Weekly
Orlando Weekly

Less a sober examination of this huge event than an impressionistic swirl of images and sounds (and, if you use your imagination, smells).

September 23, 2005 Full Review Source: Kansas City Star
Kansas City Star

Highly recommended for anyone in search of a different answer to universal questions of faith and hope.

July 12, 2005 Full Review Source: Film Threat
Film Threat

Instead of being pilgrims ourselves, we feel like we're sightseers who stopped by on the tour bus to gawk at the locals, take a few pictures, and then hop back on.

July 8, 2005 Full Review
Capital Times (Madison, WI)

The film gives an amazing feel for the complexity and diversity of such a massive event.

July 8, 2005 Full Review Source:

Short Cut to Nirvana is a swirl of color, an exotic procession of sights and sounds.

June 2, 2005 Full Review Source: Film Journal International
Film Journal International

Sacred subject matter notwithstanding, Maurizio Benazzo and Nick Day's entertaining film is a surprising spiritual cousin to the so-called 'mondo' movies of the '60s and '70s.

April 15, 2005 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide
TV Guide's Movie Guide

An engrossing documentary that vividly presents the variety and vitality of Hindu devotion.

April 14, 2005 Full Review Source: Spirituality and Practice
Spirituality and Practice

Benazzo and Day can only scratch a monumental, perhaps impossible, surface, but their effort is a worthy introduction to what is more than a single life's task.

April 13, 2005 Full Review Source: ReelTalk Movie Reviews
ReelTalk Movie Reviews

A remarkable and enlightening (although perhaps not to the point of nirvana itself) film.

March 27, 2005 Full Review Source: Austin Chronicle
Austin Chronicle

A fascinating look into a world few Americans are even aware of.

March 8, 2005 Full Review Source: San Diego Metropolitan
San Diego Metropolitan

A visionary filmmaker could have shaped this, or maybe the Mela is beyond shaping.

March 8, 2005 Full Review Source: San Diego Union-Tribune
San Diego Union-Tribune

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