Short reviews for clear and concise verdicts on a broad range of films…
T2 Trainspotting (Dir. Danny Boyle/2017)
After twenty years, the sequel to Trainspotting pulls together all the former actors with visionary director, Danny Boyle, to tell us what happened next to these heroin-addicted Scots. Partly based on Irvine Welsh’s follow-up novel, Porno, T2 Trainspotting remixes and develops the issues of the previous film. More of a neat, extended epilogue, this isn’t another adventure with the gang but a consequence and penance for the sins of the past. These lads were childhood friends before the drugs and, though spiraling down in ’96, Renton (McGregor) taking the money and running, presented an unexpected betrayal. Begbie (Carlyle) was dropped in prison, Spud (Bremner) flushed £4k down the toilet of skag and Sickboy (Miller) was left reeling – he only wished he had the balls to do it himself. Inevitably, Renton’s return to Edinburgh brings them back together. Twenty years since Renton stole the money and Spud is suicidal, Sickboy is living a decrepit life of crime with an escort for a girlfriend while Begbie has escaped prison to return to a broken family. Those memories of Tommy, and the tragedies of before, haunt them and Boyle homes in on this. Reflection provides the core of T2. The thumping soundtrack updates and recalls the iconic sound of Trainspotting and these four actors blow the doors off in their convincing and honest portrayals. T2 Trainspotting rekindles the magic and builds on it with a striking aesthetic interwoven with a feeling of remorse, and frustration, that this is how life played out.