As The Runaways heads to Irish cinemas, we take a look at some of the best music biopics


Oliver Stone’s ode to the masters of trip-rock is made spectacular by Val Kilmer’s frightening likeness to Jim Morrison. So frightening, rumour has it he actually believed he was the tackle-baring Lizard King.


Joy Division’s Ian Curtis unleashes his spider-dance in this arty B&W, picture courtesy of Anton Corbijn’s moody melodrama. A perfect character study that also delivers show-stopping musical performances from newcomer Sam Riley.

La Vie en rose

From her miserable childhood to her dizzying rise to fame and ensuing problems with drugs and alcohol, Marion Cotillard delivers an astounding performance as French chanteuse Edith Piaf. Piaf won over the hearts of many in France by pouring her suffering into her ballads, and the power of her songs will move most people.

Walk the Line

Based on the life of country music artist Johnny Cash, with focus on his rise to fame and his relationship with fellow musician June Carter. Phoenix is acclaimed for his performance, and Witherspoon finally manages to shake the stigma of Legally Blonde.

24 Hour Party People

Laugh-out-loud funny and brilliantly made as Steve Coogan fails to shake off the Alan Partridge persona to play late Factory Records founder Tony Wilson. Flitting from hilarious catastrophes to poignant tragedy, it’s a fantastic delving into the ’80s Manchester indie scene, providing biopics of Joy Division, Happy Mondays, New Order and the Hacienda nightclub.