10 Iconic raving movies you must watch

You may be new to the scene and want to see how your Mum and Dad raved, or, if like us?, we were there during the very begining of the scene and just want to dip your toes back into the incredible memories of years gone by, either way, there’s nothing like grabbing a few drinks and turning up the home sound system to an iconic rave movie and an incredible soundtrack to match. So here is 10 of the best (so far) that we like to watch that we found on Amazon this month.

  1. Human Traffic

Yes, it’s our number one for a reason, it’s a perfect snapshop of Generation X in the 90’s. It has an amazing soundtrack, the Carl Cox cameo, laughs and spurred a slew of sayings we probably still sya today…. “Nice one Bruvva!!”

For Jip, Lulu, Koop, Nina and Moff, the dead-end jobs they endure during the week just kill the time until Friday night. That’s when they cut very loose and get on the crazy roller coaster ride that takes them right through to Monday morning. An adrenaline-pumped comedy, “Human Traffic” chronicles the ups and downs — both chemical and emotional — of five friends whose weekends are filled with endless clubbing, pubbing and partying where there are no rules, no limits and no saying “no.”

Available via Amazon and currently showing on Netflix UK

Take a look behind the making of Human Traffic

2. 24 Hour Party People

Supremely entertaining, amazingly true story of the raucous music scene in Manchester, England- circa 1979-1992 and the man, Tony Wilson and the bands behind the movement that changed the history of pop culture forever. Wilson, as played brilliantly by Steve Coogan, narrates the movie; which has a fast paced, unconventional style of narrative in which Wilson speaks directly to the audience and explains what’s going on. He basically has to, because it is often hard to tell what has just happened or what is happening from moment to moment.

Surprisingly enough, this type of narrative works very well and adds a certain flair that accompanies the visceral, in-your-face style of filming, perfectly. It helps if you know something about some of the bands shown in the film (Joy Division, New Order,The Happy Mondays) or if you at least have a vague interest in learning about them. Of course, it also works on a basic comedic level too- with frenetic party scenes fueled by sex, drugs and pulsating new wave music. If you ever wanted to know what happened to The Hacienda, it’s an interesting story.

Available to watch via Amazon

3. Kevin and Perry Go Large

A Television comedy spin-off about two desperate teenagers who travel to Ibiza to expose their musical talent to a wider audience and, more importantly, to lose their virginity. Despite having adult supervision along for the ride, the pair soon cross paths with a world famous DJ (Eyeball Paul, a piss take on Tall Paul name) and spot the girls of their dreams. A brilliant soundtrack and full of silly laughs to wash away that Sunday come-down.

Available to watch via Amazon

4. Berlin Calling

Our Editors favourite. A story about Berlin techno DJ and producer Martin Karow (nicknamed Ickarus) played by Paul Kalkbrenner, is touring the techno clubs of the world with his girlfriend Mathilde while working on a new studio album that he plans to release soon. In order to be able to work and party day and night, Ickarus takes all kinds of drugs, mainly supplied by his friend Erbse at the clubs in Berlin.

After consuming a PMA-containing ecstasy tablet, Ickarus goes into a drug-induced psychosis, eventually finding himself naked in a Berlin hotel where his antics attract the attention of the hotel staff. He is taken to a psychiatric hospital in Berlin, which puts his album and upcoming live performances in danger. With an incredible soundtrack, that Paul took on a world tour in 2008, this movie has become a timeless classic and music that hasn’t aged a day!

Available via Amazon

5. Eden

Another Editors choice, this time we head to France, where Paul Vallée, a young French student, enjoys going to raves. He eventually partners with his friend Stan to form a DJ duo called Cheers around the same time as two of his other friends Guy-Man and Thomas form the DJ duo Daft Punk. He is hoping to become a writer, but he gradually abandons his thesis as his DJing career takes off. In 2001, he and his friend Cyril are invited to New York to DJ at MoMA PS1, but Cyril refuses to go, having finally decided to commit to the graphic novel he had wanted to write. Paul’s time in New York is a success, but upon his return he learns that Cyril committed suicide shortly after completing the work.

For a while, Paul is a successful DJ, but by 2006 his spending begins to catch up with him as his audience shrinks. He turns to his mother to keep him financially afloat. As his life begins to crumble, he runs into an old girlfriend, Louise. He hopes they can reconnect romantically, but she informs him that she had had an abortion after becoming pregnant with their child. Paul has a nervous breakdown and confesses to his mother that he is addicted to cocaine and is deeply in debt. We won’t tell you the rest, but an incredible look at the French rave scene in the 90’s, the bith of Daft Punk (look for cameos) and an incredible soundtrack for the old skool heads!

Watch on Amazon

6. It’s All Gone Pete Tong

It’s All Gone Pete Tong is a 2004 British-Canadian mockumentary-drama film about a DJ (Paul Kaye) who goes completely deaf. The title uses a rhyming slang phrase used in Britain from the 1980s (Pete Tong = “wrong”), referring to the BBC Radio 1 DJ Pete Tong. It won two awards at the US Comedy Arts Festival for Best Feature and Best Actor (Kaye) and swept the Gen Art Film Festival awards (Grand Jury and Audience). It was filmed on location in Ibiza including Pacha, Amnesia, Privilege, DC10 and the historic Pike’s Hotel and Cala Llonga beach. An epic soundtrack, although probably not the best comedown movie.

Available via Amazon

7. Groove

Love Digweed? You’ll enjoy Groove. A 2000 American film directed by Greg Harrison. It portrays one night in the San Francisco underground rave scene. Through a single email, the word spreads that a huge rave is going to take place in an abandoned warehouse. John Digweed has a cameo as himself and also contributed to the soundtrack with Nick Muir, under their production alias Bedrock. The film is broken up into segments according to which DJ is spinning and features real-life DJs Forest Green, WishFM, Polywog, and Digweed. Introverted aspiring writer David Turner is reluctantly dragged to a rave at a warehouse by his brother Colin. David takes ecstasy for the first time and makes a romantic connection with fellow raver, Leyla, who has recently moved to the Bay Area from New York.

Watch via Amazon

8. Loved Up

Loved Up is a BBC drama, first shown on TV on 23 September 1995 on the BBC 2 Originally this was a school information film for teenagers to show the risks of taking ecstasy, first shown to schoolchildren in the UK in 1992 and part of the Love Bites series. The film was directed by Peter Cattaneo, and starred Lena Headey, Ian Hart and Charlie Creed-Miles, plus appearances by Jason Isaacs and Danny Dyer. The drama is notable for being the first collaboration between BBC Drama Screen Two ( BBC Two ) and Scene (BBC Education) with series associate producer Andy Rowley. Loved Up won a BAFTA award as Best Children’s Drama in 1996.

The story revolves around Tom, age 21, played by Ian Hart, who meets Sarah, aged 18, played by Lena Headey, in the cafe in which she works as a waitress. It quickly blossoms into romance, and she becomes involved in Tom’s way of life, drug use and raves, where she finds solace from the chaos of her own family life.[2] The plot follows her introduction to clubbing and the taking of ecstasy, the story includes her relationship with Tom, and her escape from family problems, leaving her teenage sister at home to deal with their mother’s impending breakdown. We won’t spoil the rest of the movie, but a great soundtrack and a snapshot of mid 90’s raving in the UK

Watch via Amazon

9. Go

We thought we’d give this a notable mention, as it does involve a rave, a great soundtrack, and some funny scenes (check out the cat) Go is a 1999 American crime comedy film with intertwining plots involving three sets of characters. The film stars William Fichtner, Katie Holmes, Jay Mohr, Sarah Polley, and Scott Wolf and features Taye Diggs, Breckin Meyer, Timothy Olyphant, Desmond Askew, Jane Krakowski, J. E. Freeman, and Melissa McCarthy in her film debut. The film underperformed at the box office but was critically acclaimed. It has since become a cult classic.

Around Christmas, Ronna, working overtime at her supermarket job to avoid being evicted, is approached by Adam and Zack to buy 20 hits of ecstasy, which they had hoped to buy from her absent co-worker, Simon. After work, Ronna approaches Simon’s dealer, Todd, for the pills. She is unable to pay the full amount so she leaves her friend Claire with Todd as collateral. Ronna meets with Adam and Zack but grows suspicious of Burke, a stranger accompanying them who presses her for ecstasy. She flushes the drugs down the toilet and leaves, then steals over-the-counter pills to replace them, helped by Manny, who had covertly swallowed two of the ecstasy pills, unaware of their strength. Ronna gives 20 of the fake pills to Todd. She, Claire, and Manny then go to a rave where she sells the rest of the fake pills as ecstasy. It’s silly, it has some laughs and perfect for a weekend after drinks lay down on the couch, whilst you ponder your actions the night before.

Available via Amazon

10. Ecstasy

Last up is Irvine Welsh’s Ecstasy,  a 2011 Canadian film adaptation of the short story “The Undefeated” from the best-selling book Ecstasy by Irvine Welsh. Frustrated with her boring middle-class and loveless marriage, Heather Thompson (Kristin Kreuk) seeks a change in her life. At a club, she finds just that in happily partying with Lloyd Buist (Adam Sinclair), a drug user. Heather falls hard for Lloyd despite most of their time spent together being under the influence of illicit substances. As they experiment with this new lifestyle, they are faced with the question of whether they love their drugs, and each other, or are just drugged into loving each other. It’s a little bit darker, but for the fans of Trainspotting and looking for more substance, it’s a great watch.

Watch via Amazon

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About the Author

Loves long walks along the beach, holding hands and romantic 80's power ballads, partial to electronic music and likes to make the odd mix or two.