Sid And Nancy (1986)

A biographical film about musician Sid Vicious (Gary Oldman). It shows his rise to fame and his often-violent relationship with girlfriend Nancy Spungen (Chloe Webb).

Director: Alex Cox

Cast: Gary Oldman, Chloe Webb, David Hayman, Andrew Schofield, Courtney Love

MPAA Rating: R for language, sexual content, and drug use.

Fun Fact: Gary Oldman has stated in interviews that he doesn’t really care for this role. He feels like he didn’t play Sid Vicious well and wasn’t interested in the source material.

Punk music has always fascinated me, and I started to get into it more while I was in college. I had heard about The Sex Pistols as far back as middle school and enjoyed the one album immensely. I had heard about the film Sid And Nancy and decided to check it out while I was in a punk music phase.

Sid And Nancy is a dark and gritty film that might leave some viewers shocked or uneasy. There are many scenes of domestic violence and drug use. Sid and Nancy did live a lifestyle of drugs and an uneasy life and I think the film does a good job at showing us that. While we will never know what really happened in some of the time they were together but, the film makes a strong case of what might have happened. Alex Cox, I believe did some decent research on the subject matter, well depending on who you talk to. John Lydon, the lead singer of The Sex Pistols and a good friend of Vicious, has made it known that he hates this film with a passion. He said they got nothing right and Alex Cox was the worst. That’s putting it nicely, just look it up if you want Lydon’s full opinion of the film. To me though as a film fan, I think Cox did a great directing job and got some stellar performances out of Gary Oldman and Chloe Webb. The scenes of Sid and Nancy being in the hotel room are depressing to watch but, so well directed that it brings the unsettling element to them.

Getting with the performances you only need to watch two people, Gary Oldman and Chloe Webb. They drive the film in so many ways and there really isn’t much of a supporting cast with them. The various people and characters come in and out of the film but, they’re not the focal point of the story, Sid and Nancy are and that’s the selling point. Gary Oldman has stated like in the Fun Fact that he isn’t really a big fan of this film and this kind of upsets me. I will state it now that this is my favorite Gary Oldman performance and he’s had a lengthy career. I think he did a great job getting into the material even though he didn’t care for it. In fact, he was on a diet of steamed fish and watermelon and lost a ton of weight to get into the role and got hospitalized by being malnourished. Chloe Webb gives it her all and after watching interviews of the real Nancy, she was spot on. Webb got the voice down to perfection and the mannerisms. It’s too bad I haven’t seen much of her work because I would like to see what else she’s in.

Another thing that makes this film emotional is the music they used. Most of it is instrumental but, it makes the harder watch scenes more emotional. The work done on it to make it fit worked. It even has an awesome song by Joe Strummer of The Clash at the end credits called “Love Kills”.

Overall, Sid And Nancy is a film that might be unsettling to some but, to film and music fans I would recommend it. Gary Oldman and Chloe Webb have a great chemistry and they had quite the workload and they both pull it off masterfully. Like I stated earlier, this is my favorite Gary Oldman performance. Mr. Oldman, I think you are wrong when you said you didn’t do a good job, the reason why I keep watching this film is because of you. I mean Sid’s good friend John Lydon even thinks you did a good job and he hated the film.

Verdict: Hit


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