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(Credit: Stefan Bollmann)

Music

Peter Hook offers his opinion Ian Curtis film 'Control'

Joy Division bassist Peter Hook took part in an Ask Me Anything session on Reddit. Among the questions posed was one about Control, a probing 2007 biopic centred on vocalist Ian Curtis. “To be honest,” the bassist replied, “It was TOO accurate”.

Elaborating on the sentiment, he claimed that he recognised each of the actors “quirks”, feeling that they exhibited many of the idiosyncrasies that demonstrated just how the four bandmates interacted with one another. “It was a great film,” Hook admitted. 

In another interview, the bassist described Control as more “accurate” than 24 Hour Party People, a rock biopic about the band starring comedy stalwart Steve Coogan. Hook felt that director Anton Corbijn captured the “English” quality of the script, punching it up into something grander for an international audience. 

Control stars Sam Riley as Curtis, an intelligent, albeit deeply troubled, young man who takes up an offer from Peter Hook (played by Joe Anderson) to form a band. They prove popular in Britain, and are just about to set off for a tour of America, when tragedy strikes. The film closes with Curtis’ suicide, and although he was impressed by the film’s depiction of the event, Hook felt disappointed with the audiences who clapped during the closing credits. “It would’ve been nice to have a dignified silence,” Hook revealed. 

Unlike Hook, drummer Stephen Morris disputed the accuracy of the film, feeling that the picture had to alter certain aspects about the band to make it more entertaining for the general public. The film ends with the death of Curtis, closing out one side of history before the next chapter begins. Hook and Morris went on to form New Order, an electronic outfit that issued club favourites ‘Blue Monday’ and ‘True Faith’. 

Morris still tours with New Order, alongside guitarists Bernard Sumner and Gillian Gilbert, but Hook quit the band in 2007. He claims relationships soured during the 1990s. “There couldn’t have been a stranger contrast,” the bassist said in 2021. “It was all difficult, including Factory; we didn’t have fun. Well Me, Gillian and Steve had some fun at the beginning of the album. There were also financial problems at the Hacienda, and Factory were depending on New Order records to keep going. I wasn’t getting on very well with Bernard. But I’m big enough and broad-shouldered enough to shoulder the blame. Usual band bollocks”.

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