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Sid & Nancy (1986)



Average Rating: 7.5/10
Reviews Counted: 36
Fresh: 33 | Rotten: 3

Visceral, energetic, and often very sad, Sid & Nancy is also a surprisingly touching love story, and Gary Oldman is outstanding as the late punk rock icon Sid Vicious.


Average Rating: 7.4/10
Critic Reviews: 8
Fresh: 7 | Rotten: 1

Visceral, energetic, and often very sad, Sid & Nancy is also a surprisingly touching love story, and Gary Oldman is outstanding as the late punk rock icon Sid Vicious.



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Average Rating: 3.6/5
User Ratings: 33,335

My Rating

Movie Info

Punk rock's first great embodiment of the motto "live fast and die young," Sid Vicious joined The Sex Pistols when they were already established as the most controversial rock band in British history; and it soon became apparent that he couldn't play his instrument, had a magnetic attraction to chaos, and possessed a dangerous thirst for booze, drugs, and violence. Sid & Nancy opens shortly after Sid (Gary Oldman) joined the band, when he meets an obnoxious American punk groupie named Nancy


Musical & Performing Arts, Drama

Alex Cox, Abbe Wool

Dec 19, 2000

New Line Cinema

Watch It Now


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All Critics (36) | Top Critics (8) | Fresh (33) | Rotten (3) | DVD (17)

Sid and Nancy is the definitive pic on the punk phenomenon.

April 28, 2008 Full Review Source: Variety
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A few too many moralistic foreshadowings, but most of the time Cox's situations and characters develop on their own eloquently entropic terms.

April 28, 2008 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader | Comment (1)
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Why then should anyone of sane disposition wish to see the film? Because it is still a love story, and a very touching one at that.

June 24, 2006 Full Review Source: Time Out | Comment (1)
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It's not every film maker who credits special thanks to both Luis Bunuel and Dee Dee Ramone, but then Mr. Cox doesn't fit any recognizable mold.

May 20, 2003 Full Review Source: New York Times
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

[Cox] and his actors pull off the neat trick of creating a movie full of noise and fury, and telling a meticulous story right in the middle of it.

February 13, 2001
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The only thing that is sustained in Sid and Nancy is a tone of clinical disinterest that leaves you asking why Cox would want to make a movie about them.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Washington Post
Washington Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Oldman's mid-film music-video performance of 'My Way' before a neon staircase compares favorably-as a revelation of character through performance-to Robert De Niro's framing monologues in Raging Bull. [Blu-ray]

January 11, 2012 Full Review Source: Groucho Reviews
Groucho Reviews

Forget Jack and Rose; forget Doctor Zhivago and Larissa; forget Lady and the Tramp. This love story between Sid and Nancy is one of the most fascinating ones you'll ever see.

January 11, 2012 Full Review Source: 7M Pictures
7M Pictures

...the ultimate punk rock movie,brilliantly crafted, cinematic magic.

August 20, 2011 Full Review Source: Reeling Reviews
Reeling Reviews

The film's crowning achievement is depicting the soul-sucking toll that drugs take on the talented and the naive. Eventually, drugs replace the people they were, and they turn into mere vessels to an all-consuming craving. They become their addiction.

July 4, 2011 Full Review Source: Sarasota Herald-Tribune
Sarasota Herald-Tribune

Despite the downward spiral of these two lives, the film never loses its drive or passion; it never wallows in the misery.

July 7, 2008 Full Review Source: Combustible Celluloid | Comment (1)
Combustible Celluloid

Like Sid, this is flawed but fascinating.

April 28, 2008 Full Review Source: Film4

Alex Cox's best film by far.

January 6, 2006

A kick-your-teeth-in salute to Punkdom's self-immolating First Couple.

August 29, 2005 | Comment (1)
Flipside Movie Emporium

An amazing movie

May 12, 2005 | Comment (1)

The performances of Oldman and Webb, both stage-trained veterans, are simply astonishing.

July 30, 2003 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide
TV Guide's Movie Guide

A haunting love story about a mutually self-destructive and harrowing pair.

March 10, 2003 Full Review Source: Austin Chronicle | Comment (1)
Austin Chronicle

Eccentric and brilliant biopic.

November 5, 2002
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)

The inevitable deaths of Sid and Nancy are the only logical conclusions to their behavior; ironically, this is a fact they realize themselves.

September 17, 2002 Full Review Source: Not Coming to a Theater Near You
Not Coming to a Theater Near You

Captures the rhythms of heroin casualty much more effectively than frantic work like Requiem for a Dream, with considerably less bombast.

May 12, 2001 Full Review Source: Apollo Guide
Apollo Guide

Cox's film is strong on the atmosphere of the day and the sordid lives of those involved.

February 13, 2001 Full Review Source: Empire Magazine
Empire Magazine

Audience Reviews for Sid & Nancy

Biopics are always wonderful because we get to see an interesting character brought to life through film. In the case of this film, it is Sid Vicious, the volatile bass player for The Sex Pistols. Gary Oldman is absolutely mesmerizing in the role of Vicious, and he really makes this flawed film worth seeing. I say flawed because according to Johnny Rotten, events in the film didn't happen as such and it is full of inaccuracies. Now I'm not into punk rock and I tend to lead more on Heavy metal music than anything else, so I wouldn't know how accurate the film is. However it definitely is a compelling, well acted drama that belongs on the shelf of the best biopics ever filmed. Oldman is a great actor, and he is perfect in the part. Sid & Nancy is a film that manages to overcome its flaws by its strong performances alone. Whether you like the music or not, this is worth seeing if you love Gary Oldman's work, and with such talent, I'm surprised that he hasn't won an Oscar. This is an overlooked film in his career, as he would take on better roles in future films, nonetheless this is a stunning performance that showcases his talents as an actor at such an early phase in career. Directed by Alex Cross, Sid & Nancy is a film that should be seen by any cinema buff looking for a well acted biopic about an interesting musical icon and his volatile, drug induced life and his short term stint with The Sex Pistols.
January 2, 2013
Jeff "The Dude" Lebowski

Super Reviewer

An amazing ride through the short life of the Sex Pistols and Sid Vicious featuring Gary Oldman in one of the best performances I've seen.
October 30, 2011
Graham Jones

Super Reviewer

Most biopics of this era focus on the gritty disgust of self hatred and consequential drug use, but also feature the glamour and intrigue of being the most lusted for in an age of overindulgence and greed. In punk rock, there is already elements of grit fused with being rebellious and disorderly, glamour the farthest thing from artists' minds. So is the iconic love story between Sex Pistols bassist Sid Vicious and hot mess of a girlfriend Nancy Spungen. Sid is the emphasis of "live fast die young" roving around the stage shirtless and dirty as the day he was born. Now famous for joining the Sex Pistols bandwagon at the height of their fame, he meets Nancy, a groupie intent on clinging to whatever foothold to fame she can find. Both are obnoxious, loud, and more or less nonsensical, his speech slurred with a Cockney accent, hers a mix between a chain smoker and a four year old with temper tantrum issues. Oldman and Webb are convincingly reckless as their dependency for each other and drugs increases, becoming volatile, ripping apart the band and leading to unsuccessful ruin. Gritty isn't even the optimal word for these filth infested set of performances, the downward spiral more of a downhill slide, fast and unstoppable. Though Nancy is trying to jump start her hubby's career and dry out, she is met with fierce resistance, and abuse from a man who never apologizes. And so, their ending is perfect for the set of circumstances they're in, the only way to say goodbye for two heroes of the punk rock movement. Though both of these characters annoyed me without a flicker of respect for Sid's supposed talent, I think that's what makes the film work so well, realistic in a nauseating sort of way. It's threadbare and unsettling, but overall a good piece of work.
July 30, 2011

Super Reviewer

I really don't appreciate the punk culture, so this is probably why I didn't enjoy it as much as a true Sid Vicious fan would. I was impressed with Gary Oldman's performance which is astounding in the fact that he can play a character such as that and find humanity within that character is a clinic. I am on the fence about Chloe Webb because there are scenes that are great, but then there are scenes that give a shrilling Joey Lauren Adams a run for her money. She was fucking annoying, but that's what she is supposed to be so it's hard for me to judge. Cool to see some of Roger Deakins' early work and still see he had the touch very early. Enjoyable watch, but not memorable.
February 19, 2010

Super Reviewer

    1. Sid Vicious: Exterminate!
    2. Johnny Rotten: Exterminate!
    – Submitted by Anthony S (3 years ago)
View all quotes (1)

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