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Rattling out of control:A comparison of U2 and Joy Division on film

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This article integrates Popular Music Studies, Film Studies and Fashion Studies to offer a comparative analysis of Joy Division and U2 in the cinema. It focuses primarily on the films Control (Corbijn, 2007) and Rattle and Hum (Joanou, 1988), and looks at how popular musical performance and sub-cultural style are intertwined with the representation of city space and the construction of metropolitan identities. It does this via consideration of filmic style but in a manner sensitive to the broader sociopolitical and popular musical discourses that frame these representations. The article argues that popular music’s relationship to the cinema, and to representations of place, has been much neglected in Film Studies. As such, it considers the rock/performance/fashion/place nexus in some detail.
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Keywords: Dublin; Irishness; Joy Division; Manchester; U2; fashion; identity; popular music; post-punk; sub-cultural style

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Northumbria University

Publication date: 2011-01-01

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  • Film, Fashion & Consumption is a peer-reviewed journal designed to provide an arena for the discussion of research, methods and practice within and between the fields of film, fashion, design, history, art history and heritage. The journal seeks to stimulate ongoing research on these topics and to attract contributions not only from scholars researching in these areas but also from practitioners, who are traditionally excluded from academic debate. The journal thus aims to unite and enlarge a community of researchers and practitioners in film, fashion, consumption and related fields, whilst also introducing a wider audience to new work, particularly to interdisciplinary research which looks at the intersections between film, fashion and consumption.
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