Ian Curtis, Joy Division and Control

I just watched Control, the movie about Ian Curtis and Joy Division. I was never a big fan of Joy Division but do like the song Warsaw that we used to play in Cannibalized in Autumn.

I think Control does a good job of catching the spirit of Joy Division. It’s shot in black and white and has that kind of empty, brooding feel. At one point, Ian Curtis says something like it takes so much to do a show – I put so much into it which really reminded me of Darby Crash in What we do is Secret when and how he says he drinks and does drugs because it hurts so much to perform. It’s that common theme of an artist suffering for and through their art. I felt for Ian Curtis in the movie but felt more for his wife and infant daughter.

The movie also reminded me of Jim Morrison of the Doors and their biopic. I never made a connection between Ian and Jim before, despite them both being baritone singers. Ian had a little piece of paper on the wall of his room that said James Morrison with his birth and death years. Like Darby Crash, they both seemed to be very inwardly focussed and deep. It makes me wonder if music and poetry speaks to that kind of personality type, or helps them to find their voice to speak. It seems to me that the catch is that one could be caught in a circle of those feelings and words and cause themself to spiral downwards.


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