Sid and Nancy (1986)



Critic Consensus: 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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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 Spungen (Chloe Webb). Nancy claims that she can get drugs, and Sid naively gives her his money. Nancy doesn't show up with the goods, but when Sid runs into her a few days later, she has a tall tale about getting ripped off - and Sid sympathizes with her. Before long, Sid and Nancy have fallen in love, and while they argue with uncommon vehemence, they also depend completely on each other. When The Sex Pistols break up, Sid has few prospects and an increasingly voracious appetite for heroin, and Nancy's attempts to "manage" his career only hasten his downhill slide. Former Clash leader Joe Strummer wrote the film's theme song, "Love Kills," and The Pogues, The Circle Jerks, and Pray for Rain contributed to the soundtrack. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi
R (N/A)
Drama , Musical & Performing Arts
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
New Line Cinema


Gary Oldman
as Sid Vicious
Chloe Webb
as Nancy Spungen
Andrew Schofield
as Johnny Rotten
David Hayman
as Malcolm McLaren
Debbie Bishop
as Phoebe
Tony London
as Steve
Jude Alderson
as Ma Vicious
Kathy Burke
as Brenda
Mark Monero
as Clive
Edward Tudor-Pole
as Hotelier (UK)
Peter McCarthy
as Hugh Kares
Tenpole Tudor
as Receptionist
Pete Lee-Wilson
as Duke Bowman
Coati Mundi
as Desk Clerk
Ed Pansullo
as Detective
Courtney Love
as Gretchen
Vincent J. Isaac
as Detective
Fox Harris
as Old Stain
Xander Berkeley
as Bowery Snax
Biff Yeager
as Detective
Sandy Baron
as Hotelier
Andrew Bradford
as Dick Bent
Barbara Coles
as Reporter
Milton Selzer
as Granpa Spungen
Gloria Le Roy
as Granma Spungen
Sy Richardson
as Caseworker
Iggy Pop
as Prospective Guest
Stuart H. Fox
as Rock Head
James Snell
as Edward
Niven Boyd
as Rock Head's Trainer
Miguel Sandoval
as Record Company Executive
Patti Tippo
as Tanned and Sultry Blonde
John M. Jackson
as Lance Boyles, M.D
Desiree Erasmus
as Mrs. Hugh Kares
Tricia Bartholome
as Mary Jane
Dan Wul
as Guitarist
Bob Ellis
as Fireman
Alexander Folk
as Riker's Guard
Dick Rude
as Riker's Guard
Keith Morris
as Riker's Junky
Debby Bishop
as Phoebe
Show More Cast

Critic Reviews for Sid and Nancy

All Critics (36) | Top Critics (8)

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

Full Review… | April 28, 2008
Top Critic

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

Full Review… | April 28, 2008
Chicago Reader
Top 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.

Full Review… | June 23, 2006
Time Out
Top 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
New York Times
Top 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

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.

Full Review… | December 31, 1999
Washington Post
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Sid and Nancy

Good acting but relentlessly despairing.

jay nixon
jay nixon

Super Reviewer

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.

Alex roy
Alex roy

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.

Graham Jones
Graham Jones

Super Reviewer

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