24 Hour Party People
Time Out says'I'm a minor character in my own story,' complains Tony Wilson, music impresario, club owner, and living legend within the Granada TV region. The film-makers pack in so much, from the Sex Pistols in 1976 to the birth of the rave scene at the Hacienda club in the late 1980s, it's difficult to know where to start - but Wilson is the common link. He was in the right place at the right time, and, crucially, he had the good sense to know it. Snugly personified here by Coogan, Wilson comes off as a pragmatic dreamer, an idealistic opportunist with an eye for the genius of anarchy and accident. All of which makes him a lively, unreliable guide to the tangled roots of Madchester. The merry casting, too, throws up a dozen memorable vignettes (best of all, Sean Harris, intense and haunting as Joy Division's Ian Curtis). Encouraging improvisation and shooting on DV, Winterbottom has come up with a raucous and unruly mob of a movie, which pulls this way and that with drunken abandon, stepping on toes left and right, stumbling more than once, probably pissing all over the floor with the facts, but always having a high old time.