Owen Fairclough

Written by Owen Fairclough

Modified & Updated: 28 May 2024

Source: Collider.com

Ever wondered about the magic behind the scenes of 'Control,' the movie that captured hearts and imaginations worldwide? Well, you're in for a treat! OhMyFacts brings you closer to the cinematic world with 18 fascinating facts about this iconic film. From behind-the-scenes secrets to the inspiration behind its compelling storyline, we've got the scoop that'll make you see 'Control' in a whole new light. Did you know that the film's director went to great lengths to ensure authenticity in every frame? Or that the cast underwent extensive preparation to truly embody their characters? Buckle up, movie buffs, as we dive into the lesser-known tales and trivia that make 'Control' not just a film, but a masterpiece worth revisiting.

Key Takeaways:

  • "Control" is a unique and visually stunning film that captures the life of Joy Division's Ian Curtis. It's a must-watch for music and cinema fans, showcasing the power of authentic storytelling and the enduring legacy of a talented artist.
  • Sam Riley's remarkable portrayal of Ian Curtis, combined with live musical performances, makes "Control" a captivating and emotional journey. The film's impact extends beyond the screen, inspiring new generations to explore the post-punk genre and sparking important conversations about mental health in the music industry.
Table of Contents

What Makes 'Control' Stand Out in Cinema?

'Control' is not just another film; it's a cinematic masterpiece that delves into the life of Ian Curtis, the enigmatic lead singer of the post-punk band Joy Division. Its unique approach to storytelling, combined with stark black and white cinematography, sets it apart from typical biopics. This film captures the essence of Curtis's life, his struggles with epilepsy, and the pressure of fame that ultimately led to his tragic suicide at the age of 23.

  1. Directed by Anton Corbijn, a photographer who had previously worked with Joy Division, 'Control' offers an authentic and visually stunning portrayal of the band's story.

  2. The decision to shoot the film in black and white was not just an aesthetic choice but also a nod to Corbijn's own photography style, which famously captured the post-punk era.

The Casting of Sam Riley as Ian Curtis

Finding the perfect actor to portray Ian Curtis was crucial for the film's authenticity. Sam Riley's performance is nothing short of remarkable, capturing the intensity and vulnerability of Curtis with striking accuracy.

  1. Riley, who had never played a leading role in a film before 'Control', went through a transformation, learning to mimic Curtis's unique stage movements and singing style.

  2. His dedication to the role included losing a significant amount of weight to physically resemble Curtis, adding to the film's realism.

The Music That Drives the Story

Music is at the heart of 'Control', serving as both a backdrop and a driving force in the narrative. The film features several live performances, meticulously recreated to mirror Joy Division's original concerts.

  1. All musical performances in the film were played and sung live by the actors, a rare approach that adds to the film's authenticity.

  2. The soundtrack includes a mix of Joy Division's songs and original score pieces, providing a hauntingly beautiful accompaniment to the story.

Behind the Scenes: Filming 'Control'

The making of 'Control' was a labor of love, with attention to detail evident in every aspect of the film's production.

  1. Filming took place in various locations in England, including Macclesfield, Curtis's hometown, to ensure accuracy in depicting the singer's life and surroundings.

  2. The film's budget was relatively modest, yet it achieved a high level of quality and authenticity, proving that passion and creativity can triumph over financial constraints.

The Impact and Legacy of 'Control'

Since its release, 'Control' has garnered critical acclaim and a dedicated following, cementing its place in the pantheon of great music biopics.

  1. It won several awards, including the Best Director award for Anton Corbijn at the Cannes Film Festival.

  2. 'Control' has been praised for its honest and unflinching portrayal of Ian Curtis's life, contributing to a renewed interest in Joy Division and their music.

  3. The film's impact extends beyond its cinematic achievements, inspiring new generations to explore the band's legacy and the post-punk genre.

  4. Critics and fans alike have lauded Sam Riley's performance, with many considering it one of the most compelling portrayals of a real-life figure in recent cinema.

  5. Beyond its critical success, 'Control' has become a cult classic, beloved for its artistic merit and emotional depth.

  6. The film's influence can be seen in subsequent music biopics, which have sought to emulate its authentic approach to storytelling and character development.

  7. 'Control' serves as a poignant reminder of Ian Curtis's talent and the enduring power of Joy Division's music, ensuring that both the band and their lead singer's legacy will continue to resonate with audiences for years to come.

  8. For many, 'Control' is more than just a film; it's an essential piece of music history, capturing a moment in time and the spirit of a generation.

  9. The movie's success has also sparked discussions about mental health, particularly in the context of the music industry, highlighting the pressures and challenges faced by artists.

  10. Ultimately, 'Control' stands as a testament to the art of cinema and the profound impact music can have on our lives, making it a must-watch for fans of film and music alike.

A Final Look at 'Control'

Diving into the depths of 'Control,' we've uncovered a treasure of cinematic facts that showcase the movie's unique charm and complexity. From its raw portrayal of Ian Curtis's life to the meticulous attention to detail by director Anton Corbijn, this film stands out as a poignant exploration of music, mental health, and the pressures of fame. Fans and newcomers alike can appreciate the dedication behind the scenes, ensuring an authentic and immersive viewing experience. Whether it's the hauntingly beautiful black and white cinematography or the powerful performances, 'Control' leaves a lasting impact, inviting viewers to reflect on the legacy of Joy Division and the fragile nature of genius. So, next time you're in the mood for a film that combines deep emotional resonance with stunning visual storytelling, give 'Control' a watch. You won't be disappointed.

Frequently Asked Questions

What's "Control" all about, and why should I care?
"Control" dives into the life of Ian Curtis, lead singer of the post-punk band Joy Division. His story, marked by genius and tragedy, unfolds in stunning black and white, offering a raw glimpse into his struggles and the music that shaped an era. If you're into tales of musical legends or the gritty reality of the punk scene, this flick's a must-watch.
Who took the director's chair for "Control"?
Anton Corbijn, renowned for his work as a photographer and music video director, steered this cinematic ship. His unique vision and close relationship with Joy Division bring an authenticity and depth to the film that's hard to beat.
Did any real-life figures from Joy Division get involved in the making of the movie?
Yep, Bernard Sumner, Peter Hook, and Stephen Morris, surviving members of Joy Division, were on board as consultants. Their insights helped ensure the film stayed true to the band's story and the memory of Ian Curtis.
How did Sam Riley prepare for his role as Ian Curtis?
Sam Riley went all in, learning to mimic Curtis's iconic dance moves and even singing live for the film's concert scenes. His dedication paid off, delivering a performance that's both haunting and deeply moving.
Are the songs in the movie performed by the actors themselves?
Indeed, the actors formed their own band for the film, performing Joy Division's tracks live. This approach adds a layer of authenticity and raw energy that syncs perfectly with the movie's vibe.
What makes "Control" stand out from other biopics?
Its stark black and white cinematography, for starters, sets a mood that color just couldn't match. Plus, the film doesn't shy away from the darker aspects of Curtis's life, offering an unflinching look at his struggles with fame, love, and illness.
Can I watch "Control" without knowing much about Joy Division?
Absolutely! While fans of the band will catch more nuances, the movie stands strong as a tale of human experience, ambition, and the cost of genius. It's a compelling watch, even for those new to the story of Ian Curtis and Joy Division.

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