Joy Division, (15)
Friday 02 May 2008
After Anton Corbijn's fictional treatment in Control, here are the source notes: the story of Ian Curtis and Joy Division told through interviews with the surviving members of the band and assorted associates.
Gee's treatment is more than a little pretentious – you're left with the impression that their echoey post-punk melancholia was the most important thing to happen to Manchester, and quite possibly Western civilisation, since the Industrial Revolution.
But the archive footage of the band in performance is terrific, and the interviews feel unvarnished, particularly in their account of Curtis's decline and suicide, and everyone else's obliviousness to what was going on: the late Tony Wilson recalls how he assumed Curtis's doom-laden lyrics were "just songs".
The gloom is lightened by some great lines: Stephen Morris, the drummer, recalls how sophisticated Curtis's continental girlfriend seemed, "to someone from Macclesfield – someone who use to ride pigs for entertainment". Well worth seeing; but that's enough Joy Division films now.
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