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21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A mesmerizing, uniquely fantastic film
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...
Published on December 17, 2005 by Daniel Jolley

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars They told me Frankie's story--and although the penny dropped...
It's All Gone Pete Tong certainly is an unusual title for a movie; and that's certainly one of the reasons I chose to watch and review this film. We get a mock biopic of a young DJ on the Spanish island of Ibiza. Frankie Wilde (Paul Kaye) is a DJ who lives for the club scene where he is a prominent, wildly successful DJ--and surrounds himself with friends who only like...
Published on November 25, 2008 by Matthew G. Sherwin


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21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A mesmerizing, uniquely fantastic film, December 17, 2005
This review is from: It's All Gone Pete Tong (DVD)
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.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars SHAMEFULLY UNDERSEEN FILM, July 19, 2005
This review is from: It's All Gone Pete Tong (DVD)
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!!!
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Paul Kaye is Pure Genius, October 9, 2005
By 
Brin Mclaughlin (San Francisco, CA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: It's All Gone Pete Tong (DVD)
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.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Touching, July 20, 2005
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This review is from: It's All Gone Pete Tong (DVD)
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!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A surprisingly brilliant and inspirational film, January 13, 2006
By 
Brian (Charlotte, NC USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: It's All Gone Pete Tong (DVD)
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.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant & Sublime, September 21, 2005
This review is from: It's All Gone Pete Tong (DVD)
Following on the footsteps of similar genre movies such as Go, Groove,

Human Traffic, Trainspotting, Better Living Through Circuitry, PETE

TONG is a mash-up of the Spinal Tap mockumentary and Aviator biopic.

Second-time director Micahel Dowse rides a thin line between faux and

flake, mashing up a dance, booze, drug addled first act with a sweet,

romantic second act. Brit Paul Kaye is deejay maestro Frankie Wilde,

based loosely on deejay icons Pete Tong, Teisto, PVD, and others, who

parties until the sun rises on the grand island of Ibiza. Everything

is perfect, his gorgeous wife, his career, his foul-mouthed manager

(played by a hyper-throttled Mike Wilmot), until his hearing starts to

deteriorate. When his life and friends escape him, Frankie must cope.

Has he been reduced to half a man or is this an event of empowerment?

For anyone who has a disability (mine involved reading), this is an

inspiring and sweet story. Kaye is fantastic, as is mysterious

stranger Penelope, played by Beatriz Batarda. Lol Hammond is a genius

working the music and Graham Massey's score is sublime, as usual.

Lots of drugs, brief sex, but balanced with top-notch visuals, acting,

and music.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Moving Story About Music, Life, and Deafness, July 18, 2005
On the surface, "It's All Gone Pete Tong" is simply another Go / Groove / 24 Hour Party people that lends itself to sophomoric and often visually disgusting humor. However, in the spirit of The Family Guy and The Simpsons, the movie is more than meets the eye. The film is told as a biopic of the European "King of Ibiza" DJ Frankie Wilde (Paul Kaye), a man who has risen from obscurity to booze and drug fueled DJ sets on the party island of Ibiza. Frankie has everything: the fans, the trophy wife, the villa. But, what Frankie doesn't know is that his ears are failing him, and every drink and line that he takes brings him closer and closer to losing it all. For the first 30 minutes, the movie presents Frankie as the obnoxious partier who deserves little or no sympathy for his hardships. Even Frankie's manager, the egotistical Max Haggar (Mike Wilmot), has little tolerances for Frankie's mischief. The movie suddenly turns dark as Frankie loses his hearing and loses everything that is dear to him. He's abandoned, and at this point, the viewer has to decide whether we care. The director, Michael Dowse, does a fine job of quickly making the audience empathize for this character as he struggles to overcome (and eventually embrace) his deafness and try to resurrect his career and his life. Paul Kaye is wonderful as the tortured hero. Mike Wilmot does what few actors do: make us despise his character. The soundtrack is incredible, from the Beach Boys to house music to classical. The cinematography is beautiful.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars They told me Frankie's story--and although the penny dropped..., November 25, 2008
By 
Matthew G. Sherwin (last seen screaming at Amazon customer service) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: It's All Gone Pete Tong (DVD)
It's All Gone Pete Tong certainly is an unusual title for a movie; and that's certainly one of the reasons I chose to watch and review this film. We get a mock biopic of a young DJ on the Spanish island of Ibiza. Frankie Wilde (Paul Kaye) is a DJ who lives for the club scene where he is a prominent, wildly successful DJ--and surrounds himself with friends who only like him when things are going his way. Yep, he gets married to a model who works with him in one of his music videos and they adopt a son; but his happiness and the wild ride of fame only lasts so long.

Things change radically for Frankie when he goes deaf after too much loud music in night clubs and a wild lifestyle that his doctor tells him didn't exactly help, either. Frankie's so-called friends rapidly abandon him; even his wife supermodel wife Sonja (Kate Magowan) and their son leave him for one of Frankie's friends! The record companies and the discos soon abandon him also because, after all, when you're deaf you just might not stay on top of the heap as a hot, hot, hot DJ.

Frankie slips into total despair and fantasizes about being chased by a bear in a apron when he is on one of his countless drug trips; and it is only when he thinks to learn to read lips does the possibility of making a comeback seem real to Frankie. With the help of a woman who works at a lip reading school for the deaf (Penelope, played by Beatriz Batarda), Frankie regains his ability to be a top notch, in demand DJ once more.

Questions remain, though--will Frankie want this lifestyle back? What happens to him and Penelope--or will Sonja come back to him once again now that can make tons of money? No plot spoilers here, folks--but there's an ending that I admit did make me smile.

To its credit, the movie uses real life DJs and people in the business to make the pretend biopic as realistic as possible. However, although this film purports to be a comedy, I just didn't laugh that much when I saw it. It's not really all that funny except for a few chuckles here and there; and the disability issue Frankie copes with detracts from any true comedy that they may have tried to produce.

There are a few extras but the best is the "making of" featurette.

Overall, It's All Gone Pete Tong is a movie you can watch when nothing better is on TV. No, it's certainly NOT the worst flick I've ever seen; but it just didn't strike me as being that funny. The acting is just OK and the cinematography was average. Save this one for a rainy day when you're bored with nothing else better to do. It's just average, folks!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What could be more IRONIC than a deaf DJ?, October 5, 2006
This review is from: It's All Gone Pete Tong (DVD)
Consumers love IRONY! I can sum up this film in one sentence: DJing, drugs, hummus and sex...silence...newfound appreciation for life. What makes this film great is not the fact that Frankie Wilde does drugs, rather, its HOW he does drugs (see it and you'll understand what I mean). Same thing with his DJing. The fact that he DJs is well-and-good, but you have to see HOW he DJs (pre- and post-deaf). Frankie is a special character and Paul Kaye nails this role (as he says in the DVD extras, "God, I've waited a long time for this job."). Speaking of DVD extras...WATCH THEM. Frankie the spokesmodel for Oman Whiskey, Frankie on a cooking show, Frankie on an interview with a news anchor, Frankie's Rabbi (played by Paul Kaye), among other gimmicks...classic. In regards to credentials...WINNER GEN ART FILM FESTIVAL, WINNER U.S. COMEDY ARTS FESTIVAL, WINNER TORONTO FILM FESTIVAL. And the soundtrack...exceptional club music. Particularly, Reflekt's "Need to Feel Loved" (Seb Fontaine & Jay P Remix). I guarantee you will RE-WATCH this film over and over again. Maybe you'll even take a step back and have a look at your own life?

Note: THIS FILM IS A WORK OF FICTION. IT IS A "MOCK"UMENTARY. DON'T BE FOOLED. The fact that the directors and actors deliver such a compelling final product, where consumers actually believe it is real, is testament alone that this film is a keeper.

Please feel free to disagree with my opinion; let us compare opinions, invite a few more points of view, and debate, like the humans we are.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars When Frankie's Ears Goes Pete Tong, Nothing Goes Right., June 28, 2005
By 
It's All Gone Pete Tong is not about Pete Tong(one of the giants interviewed in this film), but it's about the ups and downs of an internationally succussful DJ named Frankie Wilde, whose life both personally and professionally had gone "pete tong" completely when he became deaf at the top of his game. This docu-biopic chronicles the heydays, fastlane lifestyle, and self-destructive times of Frankie Wilde, and to reinventing and reviving his passion and ability as a deaf DJ. It's a great film about one man's journey to spiritual and emotional rebirth at the most hopeless times of life.

Paul Kaye delivered a very captivating performance as Frankie, and his character had to endure quite a rollercoaster ride. When he became almost totally deaf at the top of his career, he started to lose a grip of himself, and behaved like a madman at one of his gigs in a club. He was told by the doctor that he was not to expose his ear to anymore loud noise or he would go deaf completely. When he insisted on producing a new album with the assist of hearing aid, an accident occurred and rendered him totally deaf. His wife Sonja(Kate Magowan) abandoned him, left him devastated, and he fell into a dark hole of cacaine and alcohol abuse. He spent months "killing" himself, until one day he finally pulled himself together for a new beginning.

He meets Penelope(Beatriz Batarda),a speech therapist for the deaf, and they soon became lovers. He eventually learned how to use his feet as a substitute to sense the sounds, and combining with the computer technology, he managed to mix a phenomenon comeback album that took the club scene by storm. His comeback success as a deaf DJ was an overwhelming experience for him and Penelope, and they mysteriously vanished from the music scene.

The film has footage of numerous interiews on various industry pros and they shared their inputs on the life and times of Frankie Wilde. This film is quite funny and entertaining, and it's more worthwhile for clubbing fans.
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It's All Gone Pete Tong
It's All Gone Pete Tong by Michael Dowse (DVD - 2005)
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