The merits of the sideways-grip on a pistol are measured more accurately in terms of style and intimidation than mechanical. The people we see in movies who hold their pistols in this fashion are probably unconcerned with the maintenance of their firearm, and adds to the "nothing to loose" image.

An interesting gun catalogue i picked up in East Lyme, CT actually sold scopes and sights that attach to the side of the pistol, increasing accuracy in the sideways-grip. The advertisements, of course, point out that firing a pistol in this manner is "unadvisable".