- Actors: Alexandra Maria Lara, Joe Anderson, Samantha Morton, Sam Riley, Toby Kebbell
- Directors: Anton Corbijn
- Producers: Todd Eckert, Orian Williams
- Format: NTSC, Import
- Language: German, English
- Subtitles: German
- Region: Region B/2
- Aspect Ratio: 1.77:1
- Number of discs: 1
- MPAA Rating:
- Studio: IMPORTS
- Release Date: March 3 2009
- Average Customer Review: 13 customer reviews
- ASIN: B001JNNBYY
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Control (2007) [Blu-ray] [Import]
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Import Blu-ray/Region All pressing. Directed by Rock photographer Anton Corbijn, Control tells the remarkable story of Ian Curtis, lead singer of the influential band Joy Division and one of the most enigmatic figures in all of Rock music. Based on his wife's memoir, Control follows Curtis' humble Manchester origins and his rapid rise to fame, tormented battle with epilepsy, and struggles with love that led to his death at the age of 23. This amazing film was the first to be directed by Corbijn, who is best known for his vast portfolio of photos of Rock icons like U2, Depeche Mode and others.
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Apart from my personal memories and admiration for the band, this is a dark, draining film to watch. It's shot in Black and White, more to
reflect the times in Manchester and not the period in history, and it also gets you into the emotional frame of mind of Ian Curtis.
Sam Riley and Samantha Morton are outstanding in the leads, Riley is a dead ringer for Ian Curtis, and if the resemblance wasn't spooky enough, Riley nails Curtis's mannerisms, dance, walk, the whole thing,,, and not just an excellent imitation of a character, but a true transformation of the character.
This is a great movie, not an easy watch, but definitely a must watch.
A little foot note, the film is based on the book written by Beborah Curtis, Ian's widow.
The story traces Curtis' life from the age of 16 and beyond. A David Bowie worshipping, chain-smoking, distracted teenager, Curtis never quite fit in with the school crowd and used music and poetry as an outlet to his emotions. He married while still in high school and had a child shortly thereafter, all of this before being in the band. Then the story shows us how he met up with the other band members and their rapid rise to fame. Throughout all this, Curtis worked a day job as an unemployment office counselor and had to tend care to his wife and newly-born daughter. The struggle between being in the band and being on the road (which in itself was not quite enough to pay the bills) and his family responsibilities not to mention his epileptic condition proved to be too much for Curtis to bear and the movie concludes with him tragically putting an end to his life.
I found "Control" to be bar none of the best movie bio-pics ever. The director's decision to make the movie in black and white is an absolutely brilliant one, as it accurately catches the essence of he band, whose artwork was always in black and white and also gives the picture the gritty feel it merits. The best part of the movie of course is the breakout performance of Sam Riley as the title character, who nails Curtis to the point of eeriness. The downcast looks, the hairstyle, the jittery movements on stage, everything is bang-on. I read somewhere that the singer of New Order had to stop watching the film midway because Riley bore too much of a resemblance to Curtis that it was scary to him. I can see why. Another star in this movie is the music. Joy Division's music is great of course, but the way the director selectively uses songs that fit the mood of what's currently unfolding on screen is remarkable.
If I were to have one issue with this film I would have to say that the reason for some of Curtis's emotions are never really explained. Why exactly is he so depressed when he has so much to be proud of? Why did he stop loving his wife so suddenly when she never stopped loving him? Maybe Curtis proved to be so complex of a character that even he himself didn't really know who he truly was. It should be noted that this DVD offers generous extras such as a commentary track, a 20mns making-of documentary, a director interview, still gallery, promotional materials, extended live performances from the film. But the highlight would have to be the music videos, where we see the real Curtis performing on BBC and see just how much of a resemblance there is between him and the actor that portrays him. Overall, "Control" is brilliant, essential stuff for both fans and also non-fans who just want to sit through a great drama. Highly recommended!
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Directed by Anton Corbijn
Starring Sam Riley, Samantha Morton and Alexandra Maria Lara
Alliance | 2007 | 122 min | Rated R |Read more