Based on a true story and Winner of Best Feature Film at Toronto Film Festival and Gen Art Film Festival, Paul Kaye (Best Actor, U.S. Comedy Arts Festival) stars as Frankie Wilde, the legendary British DJ and musical maste... more »rmind of the underground club scene whose career is cut down at its pinnacle by unthinkable tragedy - the loss of his hearing. Darkly funny and inspirational, with fierce performances by both Kaye and Kate Magowan ("24 Hour Party People"), as his sex-crazed Mrs.,you'll laugh and gasp but cheer him on as he struggles out of the abyss to reclaim his life and reputation.« less
Excellent film. Kind of a unique story about a DJ who goes deaf and still has the courage to overcome everything. It does have the traditional vibe of every rock and roll movie (sex and drugs and partys), but I think this is really an under rated movie worth a glance.
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A mesmerizing, uniquely fantastic film
Daniel Jolley | Shelby, North Carolina USA | 12/18/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"It's All Gone Pete Tong is really a rather extraordinary motion picture that has all the earmarks of a cult indie sensation. I guess we should cover a couple of things right off the bat, however. Who is Pete Tong, you ask? Well, he's a DJ, and he is in this movie - but only for a few moments. You see, this movie isn't about Pete Tong at all. It is actually about Frankie Wilde, a wildly successful DJ (and I mean DJ as in music-mixing genius and not "and that was the latest hit from so-and-so, and it's 52 degrees here at 5:00 on a busy traffic day" radio voice) who overcame the tragedy of deafness to make a huge and mysterious comeback. These movie fellows do a great job of making this mockumentary appear to be a real-life biopic, but Frankie Wilde and his incredible story are purely fictional. That fact doesn't really change anything, though, as this is still an inspirational film that will surely captivate you.
It's an oddly powerful story built around a less than likeable fellow who eventually wins you over with his intense suffering and his courageous efforts to finally put his life back on track. In his prime, Frankie Wilde is a celebrity who lives every bit of the high life - drowning his liver in alcohol, snorting bagful after bagful of cocaine, entertaining many a lady, and generally doing everything in a disconnected, vainglorious fashion. The movie pulls no punches in showing us Frankie at his most disgusting. Once he begins to lose his hearing, however, you can't help but feel sorry for him. He covers it up for as long as he possibly can, but - obviously - a man in his profession can't cover up such a devastating truth forever. Once he learns that he is indeed going completely deaf, his life hits rock bottom. He basically loses everything, including his wife and son along with his career. It's not a pretty sight at all, and he eventually holes himself up in his own pitifully constructed rubber room for months on end, basically surviving on drugs alone. His cocaine addiction is presented in a most forcible way - the monkey on his back is actually a disgusting large badger in a fairy tale outfit that isn't above smacking Frankie around when he threatens to cut back on the snorting. It sounds ridiculous, but the imagery works frighteningly well.
In time, Frankie decides to accept his disability and try to reenter the world; he gives up the drugs (but not the booze), finds someone to teach him the art of lip-reading, and eventually rediscovers his music. In essence, he develops the ability to feel and see music all around him and to channel it all into some righteous grooves that fuel the most improbable of comebacks.
This movie isn't just about Frankie's amazing story, however. It also seems to have something to say about the music industry and the callousness of greedy managers and promoters who care about nothing apart from the money their stars generate for them. Frankie was a star, but no one stuck around to help him through a tragedy that almost and probably should have resulted in his death. The ending of the film, which doesn't follow the path you would normally expect, strongly but quietly reinforces this critique of the shallowness of success.
The scenes of Frankie's emotional breakdown truly are dark and disturbing, and there is much in the film as a whole to justify its R rating. The film also has its funny moments, but this is a true dark comedy. I have to say that Paul Kaye is spectacular in the role of Frankie, lending a vitality and brute strength to an unforgettable character who will disgust you, amuse you, and eventually inspire you. I don't know how else to say it: It's All Gone Pete Tong is just a uniquely extraordinary film."
SHAMEFULLY UNDERSEEN FILM
Poncho von Trousersnake | New York, NY | 07/19/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"It's All Gone Pete Tong was realeased theatrically in the US starting April 14, 2005, and for some reason it never found much of an audience, though everyone seemed to have heard of it. I suspect that it's because the majority of the people who will most enjoy this film are not generally theater-goers and prefer watching movies at home. That said, however, everyone I know who did see the film in the theater couldn't stop raving about it.
I can't wait to see this film again once it's on DVD. I saw it three times in the theater already and totally loved it - I couldn't stop raving about it to everyone I know and taking people to see it!
And Paul Kaye and Mike Wilmot deserve tons of award recognition for thier performances in this movie, come the season.
I hope this movie willl not continue to be overlooked!!!"
Paul Kaye is Pure Genius
Brin Mclaughlin | San Francisco, CA | 10/09/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Paul Kaye is one of the underappreciated joys of British pop culture. He starred in the critically-acclaimed series 'Two Thousand Acres of Sky', which has finally seen airtime over here in the USA on some PBS stations. In this movie, however, he manages to take the story and character of Frankie Wilde from near-total repugnance and make him into somebody you can't help but root for. The first half of the movie is almost too intense, and may be tough going for some, but will truly prove rewarding if you hang in there. Words like 'triumph' and 'inspiration' have appeared in other reviews, and for good reason. An extra bonus is the brilliance of Mike Wilmot as Frankie Wilde's agent, Max Haggar. Stellar casting, biting commentary, and over-the-top production in the party scenes are all icing on the cake. It's a feelgood movie with unexpected turns and twists, and I hope people appreciate it for the brilliant satire and very human story that it is."
Rod | Earth | 07/20/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"An ex-colleague of mine had partial hearing loss from an accident many year ago. He gave me a ring when this film was released. Excited as ever, he talked about "the dj who goes deaf." I was shocked when he described the film, thinking it was just anothe raver flick. While the first 30 minutes is nerve-shattering house music, drugs, and goofy antics, the film turns a corner and presents a story of loss and redemption. DJ Frankie Wilde (an award winning performance by Brit Paul Kaye) goes from stardom to deafness in a flash, and it's at his worse that we the audience decide to cheer and root for him as he finds love, music, and happiness in places he never would have expected. The soundtrack and locations are amazing (shot on location I believe). Can't wait to see this on DVD and get the soundtrack!"
A surprisingly brilliant and inspirational film
Brian | Charlotte, NC USA | 01/14/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"There isn't too much left to say about this movie that hasn't already been written in previous reviews. Having any type of involvement in the electronic dance music (edm) scene will help you understand the basis of the film but it is not a prerequisite for grasping the main idea. The movies starts by actually mocking the status of superstar dj's in the edm/club/rave scene. The main character is extremely arrogant and egotistical, but that doesn't change the fact that he is one of the most amazing dj's the world has ever scene. When he loses his hearing, you really start to empathize with the character, who by the way is played brilliantly by Paul Kaye. I found myself asking: Could I do my job if I lost the main things I needed to do it? Could I even move on with my life enough to get to that point? Could anyone? Frankie is a character that you will probably dislike at the beginning of the film, but at the end you will be cheering for him. The mockumentary really seems like a true story, especially with the brief interviews of some of the world's most famous dj's such as Paul Van Dyke, Tiesto, and Carl Cox saying how great the man's dj'ing is. This is supposed to be a comedy, but it is a rather tragic one at that. There are parts you will laugh at, and parts that will make you want to cry. At the end of the movie though, your perspective on humanity will be altered, and that's what makes for truly great art."