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Telstar: The Joe Meek Story (2008)

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1:44 | Trailer
A music-infused drama about Joe Meek, the flamboyantly gay, tone deaf, songwriter-producer behind the '60s hits "Have I the Right," "Just Like Eddie," "Johnny, Remember Me" and "Telstar."

Director:

Nick Moran
Reviews
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Con O'Neill ... Joe Meek
Kevin Spacey ... Major Wilfred Banks
Pam Ferris ... Mrs. Violet Shenton
JJ Feild ... Heinz Burt
James Corden ... Clem Cattini
Tom Burke ... Geoff Goddard
Ralf Little ... Chas Hodges
Sid Mitchell Sid Mitchell ... Patrick Pink
Mathew Baynton ... Ritchie Blackmore
Shaun Evans ... Billy Kuy
Callum Dixon ... John Leyton
Tom Harper ... Alan Caddy
Jon Lee Jon Lee ... Billy Fury
Nigel Harman Nigel Harman ... Jess Conrad
Carl Barât ... Gene Vincent (as Carl Barat)
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Storyline

In the early 1960s self-taught electronics whizz Joe Meek amazingly produces a string of home made hit singles from his studio in his flat above a leather shop in London. His biggest success is the instrumental 'Telstar' but accusations of plagiarism delay royalties. Joe's mercurial temper causes his artists to forsake him for other labels, in particular his young lover Heinz Burt. Now in debt and after unwisely parting from his chief financier Major Banks, Joe finds himself unable to control his life. Increasingly paranoid, believing he is being bugged by rival record companies and that everybody is out to get him, the last straw comes when landlady Violet tells him she is selling the building in which he lives. Joe had once confiscated a shotgun from Heinz. Now it is dangerously close at hand and about to end the Joe Meek story. Written by don @ minifie-1

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Hit after hit... someone's going to get hurt

Genres:

Biography | Drama | Music

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language, sexual content and brief violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

19 June 2009 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Telstar See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

GBP1,250,000 (estimated)

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$109,339
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Aspiration Films See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color | Black and White (a few scenes: television scenes and archive footage)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

There are several references to The Beatles throughout the film. Much of the original score for this film was recorded at Abbey Road Studios, which was the music recording studio where the Beatles recorded almost all of their singles and albums from 1962 to 1970, roughly corresponding to the time period of the film, 1961 to 1967. See more »

Goofs

At the start of the film where Geoff Goddard first enters the Shenton's shop, the film is reversed. The shop name on the glass and the "Open/Closed" sign are back to front, and the lock, handle and bell are on opposite sides compared with the shot that follows. The first shot of Geoff Goddard entering the shop is shown in a round mirror. The frame can clearly be seen with the shop background behind it. See more »

Quotes

Major Wilfred Banks: Anton, isn't it?
Geoff Goddard: Sorry?
Major Wilfred Banks: Anton Hollywood, pianist?
Geoff Goddard: Yes. Well, no.
Major Wilfred Banks: Well, I'm afraid Joe's decision is final, he doesn't feel you've got what it takes. And if you've come for compensation, you can trot off back to wherever the hell...
Geoff Goddard: No, it's Geoff, not just Geoff. Geoff Goddard.
Major Wilfred Banks: Oh! The author! Tunesmith!
Geoff Goddard: Composer.
Major Wilfred Banks: Composer, yes, of course.
Geoff Goddard: The name Anton Hollywood was Joe's idea, it's not real. It's a stage name. He thought he'd do a Russ Conway with me, didn't work out.
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

Developed in association with Mikast Movies Ltd See more »

Connections

References Harpers West One (1961) See more »

Soundtracks

The Bee Song
Composed by Kenneth Blain
Published by Keith Prowse Music Publishing/
EMI Music Publishing Ltd
Performed by Arthur Askey
Courtesy of EMI Records Ltd
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A hidden biopic gem
21 February 2015 | by adamscastlevania2See all my reviews

(65%) At fifteen or so minutes in this pushed very few buttons for me, and as I had no idea who Joe Meek actually was, the temptation to give the remaining three quarters a skip and move on passed my mind, but I'm glad that I didn't because this heats up very nicely. Con O'Neill is sublime in the lead role as the hugely hyped-up, at times very angry, yet unquestionably passionate hit music creator during the swinging days of London in the 60's. The backing cast is made up of a host of UK talent, with Kevin Spacey adding even more quality to the production. This may be a bit to clumsily written at times with a script that feels a bit too much like a stageplay rather than a screenplay, but this is still an important piece of well told pop music history.


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