The films 24 Hour Party People and Control are “flipsides of a coin”, stated Bernard Sumner in a recent interview. While Control works perfectly fine as a very accurate Ian Curtis biopic, 24 Hour Party People focused on the history of Factory Records and the Happy Mondays – basically what came after Ian Curtis’ death and the formation of New Order and the Hacienda.
The cinematic story of the infamous rave church of Manchester which ultimately caused New Order and Factory lose a whole lot of money, is a toned-down (according to Bernard Sumner) version of true story that was driven onward by the unique chemistry (quite literally) of that time.
One of the finer insights on Factory and New Order was shot by the Riverside Studios who ran a series called Play at Home which featured artists like Siouxsie and the Banshees and Echo and The Bunnymen.
When we watched 24 Hour Party People again recently we were kind of baffled by the mayhem, chaos and flowing creativity as well as the unique chemistry (this time metaphorically) among the protagonists that made Factory Records a standout record label and the Hacienda a hot spot of the British music scene.
Now It is apparent here why Bernard Sumner had stated that the movie – which I can highly recommend – is a toned-down version of the truth. I do like to believe that since we see Tony Wilson and Gillian Gilbert having an intellectual conversation in a bath tub together and see Martin Hannett, Rob Gretton, Peter Saville and other notable figures in the history of one of the most influential record labels of all time doing all kind of weird stuff together, along other Factory artists like A Certain Ratio, who made short appearances in the documentary as well. You will thoroughly enjoy this if you’re into weirdasseries, chaos and New Order!
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