Who Killed Nancy? (tbc)

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The ViewLondon Review

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Review byMatthew Turner05/02/2009

Three out of Five stars
Running time: 92 mins

Interesting, anecdote-heavy documentary that manages to cast a fair amount of doubt on whether Sid killed Nancy, but fails to come up with a convincing alternative.

What's it all about?
Directed by Sid Vicious' tireless biographer Alan G Parker (not to be confused with Alan Parker of Birdy fame), Who Killed Nancy? is a documentary that seeks to exonerate ex-Sex Pistol Sid Vicious of the murder of his girlfriend, Nancy Spungen. The facts were as follows: on October 12th, 1978, Nancy was found dead in a bathroom at the Chelsea Hotel, with a single stab wound to the abdomen; Sid Vicious was promptly accused of her murder and didn't seem to know whether he'd done it or not, due to the enormous amounts of heroin they were both doing; he subsequently died of a heroin overdose six months later and the case was closed.

Parker rounds up a decent collection of friends, groupies, roadies, ex-junkies, drug dealers and assorted hangers-on, all of whom seem to have their own theory on whether or not Sid dunnit. He also re-examines the crime scene evidence and unearths a couple of new eyewitness testimonies, although none if it is exactly conclusive, especially given that most of the witnesses were strung out on drugs at the time.

The Good
As an investigation into the murder, the film is only partially successful, especially when you consider that even the film's most compelling piece of evidence is only circumstantial at best. However, when the film switches track and becomes more about Sid himself (especially his relationship with his mother, who, bizarrely, briefly lived with Parker before her own suicide in 1996), it's a lot more interesting.

The Bad
To be fair, the film doesn't shy away from Sid's dark side either – one interviewee relates a particularly horrible story about a cat, for example. However, the documentary is ultimately frustrating in its uneasy mix of sensationalism and inconclusiveness.

Worth seeing?
Who Killed Nancy? is worth seeing for curiosity value, but it's more successful as a portrait of Vicious than it is as an investigation.

Film Trailer

Who Killed Nancy? (tbc)
Who Killed Nancy? has been reviewed by 2 users
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Content updated: 21/10/2017 15:05

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