It captures the band, not long after the release of 'Republic' and just before things turned really sour for most of the rest of the 90s. Grueling tours, inter-band tensions and now the demise of Factory and the imminent financial collapse of their nightclub/folly The Hacienda had taken their toll, and at the time it seemed like the end. Barney's face when asked if New Order will make another LP says it all (they have since made two, and are recording another)
This is an unorthodox documentary, put together by the ubiquitous Paul Morley (when he was a serious journalist rather than a rent-a-pundit on 80s clip shows). Its edited together in cut-up 'Yoof-TV' fashion which looks a little dated now.
Some of it is very funny (the spoof New Order game show hosted by Keith Allen), some of it downright irritating (The breathy, American female voice-over that links the film together).
Best of the material is the clips of the band, sharing funny stories over a drink or six and generally winding each other up..well mostly winding their drummer up (who, it is revealed had to pay to get into The Hacienda on the opening night!). Its also a nice tribute to the bands late manager, Rob Gretton, the heart and soul of the band, Factory, and The Hacienda.
The music & promo clips, edited down in the broadcast version are mostly extended to full length. This has the effect of breaking up the documentary and rather ruining the continuity and pace. It would have been better to leave the full clips as DVD extras. Oh, and of course, the clips you want to see in full (Early live TV appearances on Granada TV etc) are cut short. The amazing clip of Joy Division playing Transmission on BBC2 Something Else is given a cheesy monochrome tint (it would have looked much more effective in its stark, Colour Videotape version), and is cut short by an annoying intrusion by Bono of all people, just as Ian Curtis is about to let rip...how ironic.
The film trades on the myths surrounding the band, and masks and obscures as much as it reveals.
Fun for fans, an interesting period piece on the band but neither a definitive history, nor a satisfying collection of clips.
Theres a great anthology of clips, and a great history of the band yet to be made. But of course, the real Neworderstory isn't over yet. This will have to do for now.
3/5 plus one bit for the funny bits.
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