24 Hour Party People

24 Hour Party People

Nonstop párty

Photography: Robby Müller
Editing: Trevor Waite
Sound: Stuart Wilson
Music: (supervize) Liz Gallagher
Color: Colour

Using a combination of scenes with actors and archive materials, the picture surveys a so-called Manchester music scene during 1976-1992. The narrator and commentator in the picture is Tony Wilson, the manager of Factory, an independent publishing house, and the founder of the Hacienda club.

His remarks, quotations, and phrases are present in front of the camera throughout the whole film. His life of an eccentric and narcissistic TV reporter changed after he had gone to a Sex Pistols concert. Together with his friends he establishes Factory Records, which becomes the recording studio of cult groups, such as Joy Division, New Order or Happy Mondays. The picture records the rise and fall of a dance club, and the music industry being transformed into a strictly delimited space of pragmatic managers who made the garage style a fashion.

When shooting the picture, Winterbottom closely followed a quotation of the director John Ford: If you have to choose between the truth and a legend, publish the legend. After the film's first night, the real Tony Wilson called the psychedelic documentary a pack of total nonsense and absolute contempt for the truth! Despite of mixing fiction and reality, the picture offers a nostalgic as well as amusing insight of maybe the most influential phase of the rock music in the last quarter of the century. The director managed to get hold of all major events in the film (as well as some minor ones: Happy Mondays feeding pigeons with poison, Durutti Column purring on the podium) and employing his sense of historical authenticity he stage-managed the atmosphere of rock shows and dance parties. The pure archive scenes show almost all major bands of the punk scene: The Clash, Siouxsie & the Banshees, The Stranglers (but Stone Roses are missing). Distinguishing the recordings of real concerts from the acted scenes may be as well regarded as a test of the viewer's attention and knowledge.

Photo Gallery

Intersonic, spol. s r.o.
Festival edition: 2003
Sections: Living Square
Exhibition format: 35 mm


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