Control (2007) Review


The film focuses on Ian Curtis who was the lead singer of band Joy Division who could not cope with his messed up life and led him to commit suicide at the age of just 23.


Now I have to admit that I hadn’t even heard of Ian Curtis or Joy Division (recognise a couple of songs, but did not know anything about the band). So I went into watching this film not knowing anything about the people or places etc. That certainly made it to be very interesting viewing which I found very engaging from start to finish, I was enthralled into this world and how it might have been for Ian Curtis who could not cope with his life and the emotions he had to go through.

He was married at 19 years old to Debbie and we are shown the turbulent time she had with him. Having to deal with his epilepsy, mood swings and depression as well as possible cheating with other women. It did not seem to help when their daughter Natalie was born just as the band was starting to take off.

The film shows the viewer the struggles the band had to take off and really make it, much of which was driven by Ian and his determination to actually succeed. Even though at times he had a very alone and distant persona. He was very talented though to be able to write the songs, he had started out with poetry as a youngster. It certainly seemed that his writing of songs helped with the pain he felt inside, but unfortunately just not quite enough.

He must deal with being diagnosed with epilepsy and still suffered from fits at times, it especially hit when he was performing. Something which must have been very dangerous and the fact that his medication did not seem to control it at times would have made it even more difficult in the world he was living and wanted to be part of. It was all just starting to come together for the band when he decided to end it all, that scene was extremely powerful and was put together in such a special and unique way.

It also touched on a relationship he had with Annik who was a reporter and hints that it was a full blown affair but that he also wanted to stay with Debbie. It certainly was a very confusing story as it really looked as though he just couldn’t work out what he really wanted. Although the best of both worlds seemed to work for him for quite a while.

I was certainly very impressed with the film as a whole and really could not recommend it highly enough if biography dramas are a genre that you enjoy. This one certainly packs a punch with the black and white really adding to the tension and actually making it look very arty if that makes sense as it does in my head! It’s also great to see such style from a British film and I am so pleased that I decided to catch up and watch this one.

A very good British independent film that is currently on Amazon Video and I really do recommend that you watch it. It has also given me new music to listen to and appreciate, which I actually did whilst writing this review, he certainly was a very talented song writer and singer, such a shame he was gone so soon. Sam Riley was something else in this film deserves so much credit for his performance level, very impressive!

6 thoughts on “Control (2007) Review

  1. I was deeply impressed by this movie. Not only does Sam Riley look exactly like Ian Curtis, he also portrayed his melancholia perfectly.
    I also checked out the book his wife wrote and was once more surprised how accurate the movie is!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah when I looked at photos after watching the film he really does look a lot like Curtis which was great to see! Pretty sure the film was based on that book, so again great that they kept it so closely linked together.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Love this film.. About 5 yrs back I was randomly watching Sundance channel here and this came on. I was beyond impressed. I knew who the band was as I’d had a b/f who was really into them at one point, but really didn’t know much else except I did love the music. Sam Riley was simply superb here. I always recommend this film to others when asked for a good indie watch. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Really good British Independent Film which won and was nominated for many awards on it’s release in 2007. Superb intense performance from Sam Riley and ably supported by the fine actress Samantha Morton. Impressively shot in black and white. Definitely one of the better music biopics.

    Liked by 1 person

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