This digital-video biopic uses the life of journalist, record mogul and club owner Tony Wilson to frame the story of the Manchester, England, music scene from the heyday of punk through the late-'80s "Madchester" era. Wilson (Steve Coogan) was an ambitious but frustrated local TV news reporter looking for a way to make his mark. After witnessing a life-changing concert by an unknown band known as the Sex Pistols, he persuades his station to televise one of their performances, and soon Manchester's punk groups are clamoring for him to manage them. As the founder of staunchly independent Factory Records, Wilson shepherded the careers of doomed post-punk combo Joy Division, synth-pop superstars New Order and hedonistic louts the Happy Mondays. Along the way, he helped bring rave culture to Britain under the aegis of the legendary Hacienda nightclub. 24 Hour Party People follows Wilson from his conversion to punk at a seminal Sex Pistols concert through the suicide of Joy Division singer Ian Curtis, the overwhelming success of New Order and the eventual dissolution of the Factory empire thanks to bad business decisions, underworld ties and the hedonistic excess of the Happy Mondays. Packed with an incredible soundtrack and a famous cast of characters, 24 Hour Party People is a sprawling, energetic, and humorous history of one of the most important periods in modern music.
|Mark E. Smith|