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Trainspotting 2, dir. Danny Boyle, 2017

As I sat in the perfect cinema row, the perfect cinema seat (the novelty of watching a film half ten at night) a sense of anticipation coursed through my body and hope that this sequel would not be a flop. It’s been a while since I’ve had this feeling of excitement over a new release, I think it helps when all components of an evening come together.

 

I was not disappointed.

A homage to the original, T2 seeps with nostalgia as it highlights current affairs contrasting to 20 years ago. Throughout, we are reminded of the original Trainspotting by brilliant Danny Boyle, brimming with memories and captured youth. We see our favourites reappear on screen and get sucked back into their progression, or lack thereof.

The film has a feeling of closure, which is reiterated through the opening song of T1 that is played in the ending scene of T2, that could not be seen with the previous film. Despite a shaky start due to its slightly different filming style, it delves us back into the world of Mark Renton, Bigbie, Spud and Sick Boy. Glimpses of the past constantly remind us that 20 years have passed as we see a battle of friendship, forgiveness and moving on. There is no doubt that this film has moved with the times with subtle comments of todays society that can be seen with the CCTV snippets and the alteration of club life as seen in Bigbie’s eyes.

It is a shame the women of Trainspotting did not play a greater part and explored further, yet reminders did remain. Cleverly costumed Diane appears on screen as a lawyer, suited in an outfit that is very reminiscent of her old school uniform. We see these men stuck in the past, reliving old memories and finding closure from the ‘opportunity’ that led to ‘betrayal’ of Mark.

The love of montage is ever present in this film and clashes of past and present are represented on screen in this way. What could have been a bold and innovative film becomes a homage to the old and can only be seen as that, not a new entity itself. All in all, we do still fall in love with the characters of screen due to the wit and charm being captured and despite the film being lacking in places, it was certainly pleasing to both eyes and ears.

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