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Sid and Nancy (1986)

R  |   |  Biography, Drama, Music  |  7 November 1986 (USA)
7.1
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 21,043 users  
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Morbid biographical story of Sid Vicious, bassist with British punk group the Sex Pistols, and his girlfriend Nancy Spungen. When the Sex Pistols break up after their fateful US tour, ... See full summary »

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Title: Sid and Nancy (1986)

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Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 5 wins. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Debby Bishop ...
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Perry Benson ...
Tony London ...
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Rusty Blitz ...
John Spaceley ...
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Storyline

Morbid biographical story of Sid Vicious, bassist with British punk group the Sex Pistols, and his girlfriend Nancy Spungen. When the Sex Pistols break up after their fateful US tour, Vicious attempts a solo career while in the grip of heroin addiction. One morning, Nancy is found stabbed to death and Sid is arrested for her murder. Written by Alexander Lum <aj_lum@postoffice. utas.edu. au>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Love kills

Genres:

Biography | Drama | Music

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

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Release Date:

7 November 1986 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Sid and Nancy: Love Kills  »

Box Office

Budget:

$4,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$2,826,523 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Courtney Love auditioned for the role of Nancy Spungen, but was cast as Nancy's friend Gretchen instead. Alex Cox was impressed by Love's audition and considered casting her as Nancy. But the film's investors insisted on an experienced actor for the role. By way of an apology, 'Alex Cox (I)' then cast Courtney Love as one of the main characters in his next movie Straight to Hell (1986). See more »

Goofs

In 1975, when the Sex Pistols supposedly attacked Rod Stewart's Limousine, the Limo was a Cadillac made between 1980 and 1985. See more »

Quotes

Nancy: What are ya doin here? You're in the studio, these places cost like fifty grand a minute. You could be really shining out! But what? You're just wonking off!
John: Wanking!
Nancy: What happened to you? Did you try and kiss your mother?
John: None of your business.
Brenda Winczor: John got beaten up by facists.
See more »

Crazy Credits

"And introducing the young Cat Vicious in the role of Smoky, Sid and Nancy's child." See more »

Connections

Referenced in Almost Famous (2000) See more »

Soundtracks

She Never Took No For An Answer
Performed by John Cale
Written by John Cale / Larry 'Ratso' Sloman (as Larry Sloman)
© 1986 John Cale Music, Inc. Ratso Music, BMI
See more »

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User Reviews

 
The greatest story of doomed love since Romeo and Juliet
6 July 1999 | by (Burbank, CA) – See all my reviews

Sid and Nancy is one of those rare films that has all the bursting exuberance of youth without all the negative side effects. There are no scenes that scream out "HEY LOOK AT US! WE'RE YOUNG, WE'RE TWISTED, DON'T YOU WISH YOU WE'RE US!?" Okay maybe it has a few, but none of them feel like they exist strictly for shock value, none of them feel the least bit contrived or unnecessary. That is what makes Sid and Nancy so great. Most film criticism stems from reaction to prior film releases. Reviewers like Siskel and Ebert tend to cling to comparisons as a safety blanket, and as an almost cop out for original thought. Director Alex Cox (Repo Man) tells a story of doomed love that tends to defy easy categorization. Its brilliant combination of ultra realistic biography and surrealistic conjecture create a film universe that had not been seen prior to its release. The film opens in a dingy New York City, Chelsea Hotel room. Sex Pistols bassist and Punk Rock icon Sid Vicious (Gary Oldman, in a staggering performance) is being questioned by police about the apparent murder of his girlfriend and world famous rock n' roll groupie Nancy Spungen (Chloe Webb, Twins, TV's China Beach). Smash cut to the punk rock era of 1977 London, where Sid meets Nancy in a world of anarchy and disillusion inhabited by kids who don't know quite what they are disillusioned about. After a brief first encounter there is no chemistry between these two classic lovers, but soon Nancy sees Sid at a Sex Pistols gig, jumping around on stage freely showing his lack of musical ability and its love at first sight. (Note: it is a documented fact that Sid Vicious barely knew two chords on the bass guitar.) When Sid, after asking Nancy to cop some heroin for him, bashes his head against a brick wall in a twisted attempt to empathize with her, Nancy's love is only reaffirmed by Sid's complete abandonment of personal safety. Before we know it the two are shooting up the drug, which immediately begins a cycle of codependency that only desperate youth could satisfy. So the question arises are they really in love? Or do they need each other to support their habit? Well the question is answered, at least in Alex Cox's eyes, in a scene where the Sex Pistols play a gig on a riverboat, which ends violently in a police clash with Sex Pistols fans. As the boat docks, the punk rock youth pour onto the dock to escape the Billy clubs. Sid and Nancy casually stroll through the chaos unscathed as if they know that their love will protect them. As corny as the above event my sound, Alex Cox quickly juxtaposes with a scene of pure brutal addiction where we get to witness one of the most frantic "fiending for drugs scenes" ever shot. Sid and Nancy's desperation does not only make us cringe, it also makes us laugh with a classic comic topper that has to be witnessed to gain full appreciation. There in lies the beauty of Sid and Nancy, a locomotive of a film that is always on the verge of jumping the tracks, but is saved at the breaking point by carefully placed contradictions that more often than not makes us laugh. As if the above were not enough to make an engrossing movie, the film is also a great example of integrating historical events into a story without distracting the viewer from the film's unifying themes. Sid and Nancy is a great anthology of the rise and fall of a social movement, which behind the spiked hair, and leather jackets, was a dead on assessment of the hypocrisy that existed in England and the United States circa the decadent 1970's.


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