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>
The film was originally called Love Kills. Near the end of post-production, one of the companies financing the film received a letter from someone claiming to own the title and threatening legal action if they used it. Alex Cox reluctantly changed it at the lawyers' insistence. He would later describe the title Sid and Nancy as "bland," but he liked what it was called on video in Mexico: Two Lives Destroyed by Drugs. See more »
In the second half of the movie when Sid and Nancy are in the the methadone clinic, there is anti-drugs poster behind the person handing the methadone out. The poster uses artwork featured on the cover of the Iron Maiden album 'Number of the beast'. The scene is set in 1978/79, but the Iron Maiden album and subsequent artwork in question didn't come out until 1982/83. See more »
I missed SID & NANCY when it was first released. I wasn't expecting much when settling down to watch the DVD. I was pleasantly surprised to find a coherent, energetic but ultimately melancholy study of co-dependency, with two terrific central performances.
We get to know Chloe Webb's child-woman Nancy to a greater extent than we do Gary Oldman's wild-man Sid. Not the actors' fault. In fact it's not a fault at all. There is something inexplicable there. Whatever forces were at play in forming the young man who became Sid Vicious, it's to the credit of Alex Cox and his team that they don't waste time speculating upon them or trying to analyse them. Instead, the film lives up to its title, starting just before the relationship starts and ending just after Nancy's death.
The era in which the film was made is a significant factor in appreciating it. It was, in the UK at any rate, a time when the welfare state that had been so painstakingly put into place began to be systematically unravelled, a land where the notion of Society was belittled, in which hyper-individualism was lauded, where any sense of community was being abandoned, and the search for it becoming a joke. WALL ST, the'hero' of which was to famously declare Greed to be good, was released the year after SID AND NANCY. I remember all that only too well. And of course it's not over yet: the unravelling continues.
Sid and Nancy meet in a frenzy and finish in a fog. In between they shore each other up as best they can, two bits of flotsam on an indifferent sea. We're shown only a little of where Sid came from, mercifully not enough to help us theorise about how he came to be the embodiment of anarchy. Instead, through Oldman's bravura, we see his unmitigated charisma, at which the film's unctuous Malcolm McClaren (played by David Hayman) smiles knowingly and which he merrily exploits. We do see Nancy in the context of her family, but again, instead of attempting to use this encounter to explaining her, Cox gives us a sense of how pleased the family was to get rid of her. If Romeo and Juliet had been like Sid and Nancy, the Montagues and the Capulets would have paid to get them married and out of Verona altogether.
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