On June 4 1976, four young men from ruined, post-industrial Manchester, England went to see a Sex Pistols show at the Manchester Lesser Free Trade Hall. Inspired by the gig that is now credited with igniting the Manchester music scene, they formed what was to become one of the world’s most influential bands, Joy Division.
Now, thirty years later, despite a tragedy that was to cut them off in their prime, they are enjoying a larger audience and more influence than ever before, with a profound legacy that resonates fiercely in today’s heavily manufactured pop culture.
Featuring the unprecedented participation of all the surviving band members (now known as New Order), ‘Joy Division’ examines the band’s story as depicted through never-before-seen live performance footage, personal photos, period films and newly discovered audiotapes. With poignant narratives from Bernard Sumner, Peter Hook and Stephen Morris, as well as accounts from Throbbing Gristle musician Genesis P. Orridge, late legendary Factory Records owner Tony Wilson, iconic Factory Records graphic artist Peter Saville, photographer/filmmaker Anton Corbijn, Belgian journalist Annik Honoré (speaking for the first time about her relationship with Ian Curtis) and others, the film is a fresh visual account of a unique time and place.
From director Grant Gee and producers Tom Atencio, Tom Astor and Jacqui Edenbrow, Joy Division chronicles a time of great social and political change in England and tells the untold story of four men who transcended economic and cultural barriers to produce an enduring musical legacy.