Danny Boyle’s T2 Trainspotting: Choose Life

Before we had betrayal, we had opportunity. Twenty years has passed and much has changed, but at the same time, much hasn’t. Mark Renton (Ewan McGregor) has come back to the only place he could call home. His friend are waiting: Spud (Ewen Bremner), Sick Boy (Jonny Lee Miller) and Begbie (Robert Carlyle). More of his friends from his past are waiting too: temptation, discontent, denial, fear, love and revenge. They are ready to welcome him, whether he likes it or not.

Sequels being released long after the original are always risky business. More so, a sequel that didn’t necessarily need to be made, but Danny Boyle (Trainspotting) has delivered an amazing sequel to a film that shook cinema, one of the  most influential movies of all time. I watched Trainspotting for the first time a few years ago and I was very impressed by it. When I heard there was a sequel in production, I knew I had to see the follow up to Danny Boyle’s masterpiece.

Begbie (Rob Carlyle) is well…you know…mad and psychotic as always
(T2 Trainspotting, TriStar Pictures)

From the trailers, I knew were back into the aura and feel of the original movie. It was as if I was back in this mad and psychotic environment. Boyle has never made a sequel to one of his movies, until now, and it paid off. I feel that this movie was not made for a box office venture. I feel it was made as a fan-pleaser, and I’m not complaining. I’m part of the generation that was born around the time of the first film’s release. To be specific, I am a ’95 baby and I think this sequel will be loved by today’s generation of fans as many will relate to some of themes explored in the sequel.

Our band of misfits are back, and all four of them give excellent performances with Spud (Bremner) giving my favourite of them all, as I really enjoyed his storytelling skills. Bremner as Spud is the best and was given the character development that became a necessary part of the sequel. Ewan McGregor (Trainspotting) gives a good performance as Renton and you can tell McGregor enjoyed reprising the role that made his name. Carlyle (Once Upon A Time) continues to be mad and hilarious as Begbie. Johnny Lee Miller (Elementary) is also good as the misguided antihero Sick Boy.

Renton (Ewan McGregor) and Sick Boy (Johnny Lee Miller) in Danny Boyle’s much awaited sequel
(T2 Trainspotting, TriStar Pictures)

T2 is not only a continuation of the original, but it’s a trip of pure nostalgia for those who watched the original at its release. The use of that and the memories from each character was well done, including a nice cameo from Kelly Macdonald (Swallows & Amazons) as Diane. It felt like something true rather than trying to be a remake of the original. The writing is sharp, witty and intelligent whilst the acting was strong, in addition to the well-constructed soundtrack. I also loved the welcome addition of newcomer Anjela Nedyalkova as Veronikia. Even for those who have not seen the 1990s classic, T2 is still watchable as a standalone feature and that’s an commendable feat indeed.