Former musician Frankie Wilde is a legend within the Ibiza club scene for being the most inspired DJ around. On top of that, he has a beautiful model wife named Sonja Slowinski, although ... See full summary »
A chronicle of John Lennon's first years, focused mainly in his adolescence and his relationship with his stern aunt Mimi, who raised him, and his absentee mother Julia, who re-entered his life at a crucial moment in his young life.
Kristin Scott Thomas,
Manchester 1976: Cambridge educated Tony Wilson, Granada TV presenter, is at a Sex Pistols gig. Totally inspired by this pivotal moment in music history, he and his friends set up a record label, Factory Records, signing first Joy Division (who go on to become New Order) then James and the Happy Mondays, who all become seminal artists of their time. What ensues is a tale of music, sex, drugs, larger-than-life characters, and the birth of one of the most famous dance clubs in the world, The Hacienda - a mecca for clubbers as famous as the likes of Studio 54. Graphically depicting the music and dance heritage of Manchester from the late 70's to the early 90's, this comedy documents the vibrancy that made Mad-chester the place in the world that you would most like to be. Written by
The opening scene, in which Tony Wilson (played by Steve Coogan) goes hang-gliding for an item on his regional Granada news program, really happened. Furthermore, original Granada footage, showing the real Tony Wilson in some distress, has been spliced into this scene. See more »
In the film Tony Wilson is seen at the funeral of Ian Curtis however in real life he could not attend the funeral as he was given the task of looking after Annik Honore, Ian's lover from Belgium, so that she would not attend the funeral and cause upset. She had come to see Ian before he flew with the band to America for the tour. See more »
Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it's the latest craze sweeping the Pennines, and I've got to be honest, I'd rather be sweeping the Pennines right now.
See more »
Written by Moby (as Richard Hall) and Angelo Badalamenti
Used by kind permission of Universal/MCA Music Ltd
Copyright The Little Idiot Music/Warner-Tamerlane Publishing Corp
By kind permission of Warner/Chappell Music Ltd
Performed by Moby
Copyright 1991 Instinct Records under exclusive license to Pinnacle Labels
Licensed courtesy of Instinct Records and Pinnacle Labels See more »
As I am a big fan of the bands who secured the glory of Factory Records, especially Joy Division and Durutti Column, I was quite impatient to discover "24 Hour Party People". I watched it last night and the first thing i will say will be the following one: how disappointed I was! The scriptwriter Frank Cottrell Boyce and especially the director Michael Winterbottom did a really bad work and I will try to explain why.
For me "24 Hour Party People" is an enjoyable movie to listen to, mainly thanks to the music. Someone has written on this site that you had to be British to appreciate the music. Not necessarily. I am myself French and I love most of the bands who signed for Factory Records. Obviously, you have to like this time (English independent music of the eighties), this culture. That said, these bands aren't very known in France where they remain at the stage of cult-bands. Michael Winterbottom's flick was apparently successful in Great-Britain, but in France it was belatedly launched (on the 4th June 2003) and it went unnoticed. But the main problem is that "24 Hour Party People" is, visually an exhausting movie to watch. I must say that I don't appreciate very much the making adopted by Winterbottom. There's an amateurish side, reinforced by a granular and quite dirty photography in his way of filming that I highly disapprove. It seems that his camera can't stand still even in the quietest moments. On another hand, when the movie arrives at the end of the eighties (the golden age for Manchester), as if he wanted to recreate the crazy atmosphere of the town in 1989-1990, he didn't skimp on the flashy effects which ends up annoying the spectator. Then, Winterbottom must have been influenced by "Trainspotting" (1996) because in his directing, we can sometimes detect a video clip side.
To go on, the authors of the movie seem to have forgotten one important thing. Factory Records wasn't only limited to Joy Division and the Happy Mondays. There was also Durutti Column and New Order. All right, the movie doesn't forget them but you can only see them for a few minutes. Given that, the film nearly skips the mid-eighties and quite obviously Joy Division and the Happy Mondays's careers especially interested the authors. Due to this, you can easily separate the movie in two parts. The first one mainly focuses on Joy Division while the second involves mostly the Happy Mondays. This characteristic is confirmed with the cover of the original soundtrack which depicts Tony Wilson (of course) but also Ian Curtis and Shaun Ryder. By way of consolation, we can object that Winterbottom had intuition for the cast because the actors he hired to play the musicians are very true to life, especially the ones in the roles of Ian Curtis and Bernard Sumner. Furthermore, the actor who acts Martin Hannett is very convincing in the shameless personality of this extraordinary producer.
Tony Wilson's voice-off is necessary to guide us through the most important stages. So as to give the spectator interest in the film, it can also be a good thing to make Wilson directly speak to the camera to make us share his feelings, his thoughts on Manchester, the music. So long as this idea doesn't overload the movie and I have unfortunately this impression. Winterbottom and Boyce should have restrained these too frequent apparitions.
The screenplay retained the most outstanding moments in the history of Tony Wilson and Factory Records but it doesn't stop it from having neglecting important stages as well. For example, I am sure that the fans of Joy Division would have liked to see the band recording their great disembodied album, "Closer" (1980). Then, in the first part of the work, the "punk" and "new-wave" spirit are well rendered (in one sequence, we see one character taking off from the wall a poster depicting Pink Floyd's album "Dark Side Of The Moon" (no Pink Floyd in 1977!) as well as the festive one in the second part through the Hacienda and ecstasy. But because, the director wanted to dazzle the spectator, at a visual level, it is difficult to fully enjoy this exhausting film. So you are never touched by a movie that is meant to take a nostalgic look at a past time.
This is my opinion about "24 Hour Party People": excellent music but an average movie. If a director wishes to make a film about Alan McGee, the former boss of Creation Records (Oasis and Primal Scream's former record company), I hope he won't do the same mistakes as Michael Winterbottom with this flick.
6 of 8 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?