The Throwback Tuesday weekly post is a opportunity for me to revisit the good, cheesy, forgotten or essential parts of music, film, tv and books from my childhood, the past few years or the generations/eras/works of art that have influenced my life in some way.
This week, I’m going to feature one of my all time favourite films that is also my favourite music related film as well. That film is Control about the life of Ian Curtis and the times in Joy Division from the start up until Curtis’ suicide. It’s a heartbreakingly sad film but the story is portrayed perfectly by such wonderful actors and great cinematography throughout.
The lead role is played by Sam Riley who absolutely perfectly plays Ian Curtis from the man determined the make a career in music, to the distraught and troubled lead singer of Joy Division to the struggles Curtis faced juggling touring and his life in Manchester with his wife and child. Starting in 1973, the film goes through the next 7 years of Curtis’ life with his wife Deborah played by Samantha Morton. It not only deals with the band but also his struggles with his epilepsy and the affair he has with Belgian music journalist Annik Honore.
Filmed entirely in black and white it shows the bleakness of the north back in the 70’s and therefore the desperation of many teenagers back then to create a band, get famous and leave touring the world instead. With so many absolutely wonderful performances from every single actor involved especially those in the main cast, it makes for such an excellent film to watch. It may be a tragic and heartbreaking story in the long run but the way that it has been portrayed so well and with respect to Curtis, his family, the band and people who have also suffered with illnesses such as epilepsy and depression really does mean that this is not just a music biopic intent on lazily telling a story like many.
Its indie feel, attention to detail and need to tell the story of Curtis and Joy Division truthfully makes it easily one of, if not the best, music film I have ever watched. As a massive fan of Joy Division this film lived up to what I wanted it to be and more as well as educating me more on their career and lives. A truly great film and a must watch especially for any Joy Division fan.
If you haven’t seen the film, then check out the trailer below and go watch the film now. I know I certainly will be watching it again tonight.