Directed by Michael Winterbottom
Written by Frank Cottrell Boyce
Screened at (1st December 2009)
A screening of 24 Hour Party People was shown at the FACT with the writer
and director Frank Cottrell Boyce in attendance for a Q&A.
But first the skinny on the director and what he did for the research
on the film from his own impartial lips: nought - he was no expert and
felt as a director stay fresh don’t listen to other people's ideas
stick with your own right or wrong.
The film is largely a biopic of the late great Tony Wilson as well as
chronicling the rise and development of the music scene in northern Britain
and with a cold eye to the culture surrounding it, the Liverpool Beatles'
story is overdone. To see a fresh perspective from the other side or the
Manc's point of view was a necessary enema for the cultural clichés
written by journalista on the make.
Fighting the economic trend with bland stupidities and a degree from
Cambridge in his repertoire, Steve Coogan's face to camera style and mode
reminiscent of his best TV comedy work encapsulates the man, the myth,
the music and the Manchester that was the hub and cradle of music civilisation.
“I discovered punk” he declares, and he means it, showing
the Sex Pistols on his early 'What’s On' programme he helmed for
With the rise of joy Division and the bleak unrelenting haunting sounds
of Ian Curtis driving the group to superstardom, and comedians Skinner
and Baddiel footy anthem fame, the downside is observed and caricatured
by the likes of the Happy Mondays and their total piss-taking by the band
out of Wilson with his no contract philosophy as they are permanently
high, stoned, bombed out their skulls on smack, charlie, as well as drinks
and the odd joint. The impetuousness of youth and the synthesizing of
the sound of the E generation is the place to be, developing from Factory
Records outwards: the Hacienda, to dance and party your night and weekend
Frank was an affable after show talker, with the questions from David
Knopov stimulating and inviting the audience to comment on the film. He
answered politely on the technicalities and mentioned the cost of film
production dropping, such as his first endeavour 'Butterfly Kiss' costing
half a million. This has all been scaled down by cheaper technologies
in the film industry. Overall he was very honest and candid as to why
he’d not done the Eric’s nightclub: “I'll leave that
to someone else better qualified.”
A very warm and enjoyable night was had by all. I’d avoided the
cold night air of démodé mode and argy bargy meetings to
seek sanctuary in the luxury that is the FACT bistro on the first floor
alright for some innit. Awaiting execution orders from the cultural commissar
to be dispatched to the Eastern Front north of Garston cultural village
The event was part of Clapperboard Youth Project. And the main feature
was preceded by an anti-gun crime short made by young people themselves.
The funds will go to this very worthy cause.