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Control

Posted by Eric Brightwell, October 29, 2007 11:21am | Post a Comment
    

I saw Control with Morten. It's the movie about Joy Division and more specifically Ian Curtis. It's funny because the first I heard of it was critics tripping over themselves to point out that they liked it though they'd never heard of the band. The point is always pretty much, "I'm a square. I'd never heard of these guys but I liked the movie, although for a rock band, they sure weren't that much fun." I wonder what those critics were listening to back then. To me, Joy Division is one of those bands that, if you have taste, you should've at least heard during their existence if you were teenage or older. I mean, how separate are the worlds of music and movies that you'd have us believe you've got great taste and an ear to the underground if you still haven't heard of Joy Division? What bigger independent bands were there in the late '70s? And didn't you review 24 Hour Party People not five years ago?

Back to the 24 Hour Party People then. When that came out I saw a lot of dour Raincoats leaving the theater expressing their wish that whole film had been about Ian Curtis and not those awful acid house Blue Tuesdays or whatever was going on after Ian Curtis' death, at which point their lot zoned out 'til the credits. Pity them. And I thought of how awful that would be -- a film about Joy Division. Biopics are so suspect. Made For Cable movies that sit in the wings like vultures to be released in theaters only in the event of the subject's death because what is an awful film will likely reap the awful rewards at the Oscars.

Control is directed by Anton Corbijn, which I didn't know till the end. Whatever you think of the guy, and I love his videos, you've got to admit that his images always have to easy to appreciate visuals. I mean, Bryan Adams got him to direct "Have You Ever Really Loved a Woman," after all. He's f---ing Dutch, for Christ's sake.

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NEW IAN CURTIS BIOPIC - CONTROL

Posted by Billyjam, October 11, 2007 10:13am | Post a Comment

This week (Oct 10) is the Stateside opening (in select US cities) of the film Control -- the biopic about Joy Division's tragic lead singer Ian Curtis (played by Sam Riley) who committed suicide in 1980 at age 23. Even though I've read various reviews of the movie that range from good to bad and mediocre, I know I will definitely be going to see this film, which was directed by Anton Corbijn (shot in black and white -- similar to his infamous photography of Joy Division, U2 etc.) and based on the book Touching From a Distance by the film subject's widow Deborah Curtis. Some reviewers warn Joy Division fans that it is not really a story of the ever-influential band, but rather a dramatic love story -- a tragic tale of this troubled young artist who liked Bowie and cigarettes, got famous at an early age, married too young (19) and then fell in love with another, suffered from deptression and anxiety, and on top of all this had epilepsy for which he had to take pills that had negative side-effects. 

Additionally, fans fiending for original Joy Division music should know that the music is not by the band itself but rather the actors playing the band in the movie, with the exception of a Joy Division cover by the Killers over the closing credits. In one magazine interview, on the topic of having the actors learn the music of Joy Division and play it in the film, director Anton Corbijn (who is interviewed on Dutch TV below) said that it would be more authentic to have the actors learn to play the songs and perform them in the movie, noting that Joy Division were not really that advanced as musicians anyway, so it wasn't impossible to have the actors learn the musical parts. It might have been had it been, say, a film about Pink Floyd, he said. For more information on the film go the official website. And if you go check it out in theaters, please come back here to this AMOEBLOG and post your review in the COMMENTS box. Thanks!

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