Movies => Good Movies => Topic started by: ER on September 10, 2017, 01:48:33 PM

Title: Control (2007)
Post by: ER on September 10, 2017, 01:48:33 PM

Okay, I was about to put this in the forum where you track your viewings but technically that was not where you are supposed to review films, just list them, I gather? Funny, after 3K-+ posts I really don't know much about this end of the forum, movieland, though since this place is called Bad MOVIES, I figured after a decade here I could share my thoughts on some movies I've watched, for though I see 1% of the movies most people here do, I actually have sat through some in my life. (No, really!)

Mostly, though, it feels like being in a strange neighborhood to leave the asylum-like confines of Off Topic come up the page and write something. (Also here I don't get to use my favorite letter of the alphabet, the ninth, as often as I'm used to, but I'll survive.)

Well, here goes, Control:

As much as I enjoy this great movie, each time I watch 2007's  Control I can't help but think how startled Ian Curtis would probably have been to know that it would be his legacy to be remembered as the tragic figure Control (and to a much lesser extent Tony Wilson's onscreen love letter to Manchester and its bands, 24 Hour Party People) made him out to be, instead of the social rebel he thought he was.

The actual Curtis swore and drank, had temper fits, could be temperamental and difficult to friend and loved-one alike, and was known for his loud, scathing diatribes, including a famous one in which he blasted David Bowie (hope you're enjoying some hedonistic Valhalla, sir) for living to age thirty, despite the tone of Bowie's 1970s ode to dying young, "All The Young Dudes". In contrast the Ian Curtis of Control was a suffering martyr figure with a quiet, Keats-like delicacy that gave him a wispy quality that really doesn't gel with what we know of the flesh and blood man.

Having said all that, Control is still one of the most watchable films that's ever been made about the rock and roll scene. It is a both a labor of love and an artistic remembrance of a place and time and those who lived there. The story it tells can be either criticized as a subjective exercise in idealism, or praised for its close connection to those participants in and around Joy Division (Tony Wilson, Deborah and Natalie Curtis, the guys from New Order) who remained alive at the time of filming. One member of the band went on record as saying that the events depicted in Control were not much like they were in reality, but added that in telling Curtis' story, Control improved things, making the story more dramatic and approachable.

No commentary on this film would be complete without mentioning both the brilliance of its soundtrack and the meticulous reenactments of its concert scenes. Many of the locations from Curtis' life and death (the suicide scene was literally filmed in the kitchen where Ian Curtis hanged himself in 1980) were actually used in the making of Control, adding an unmistakable punch to the plot.

Finally, the fine acting on the part of virtually everyone who appeared onscreen was a delight to see, with Samantha Morton and Sam Riley turning out emotional performances that deserved Oscar recognition: something an outside film like Control would never get in Hollywood.

Like Ian Curtis himself, Control isn't perfect but it's still darn interesting.

(All righty, folks, so how did I do?)

Title: Re: Control (2007)
Post by: Dark Alex on September 11, 2017, 12:53:54 AM
Good review, makes me feel interested in watching the film despite it not being the kind of thing I would normally watch.