Mark “Rent Boy” Renton ( Ewan McGregor ) was gone for 20 years and had been looking for a new life in Amsterdam after the drug deal where he had ripped off his buddies. When he drives back to his home country, he realizes that a lot has changed. But not a lot either. Daniel “Spud” Murphy ( Ewen Bremner ) still struggles with his drug addiction. Simon “Sick Boy” Williamson ( Jonny Lee Miller ) struggles with his ailing bar but secretly dreams of opening a brothel with his Bulgarian girlfriend Veronika ( Anjela Medyalkova ). And Francis “Franco” Begbie ( Robert Carlyle), the fourth in the bunch? He recently escaped from prison and is still plotting revenge for Renton’s betrayal back then.
As far as late sequels and reboots are concerned, cinemagoers weren’t exactly spoiled lately. Blair Witch copied the found footage pioneer 17 years after The Blair Witch Project without understanding what made it so big. Ghostbusters did try something new 27 years later but failed due to dull jokes and charmless characters. It wasn’t promising either, Trainspotting dig up 20 years later. A film that, like hardly any other, is inseparably linked to the time when Great Britain took the world by storm musically, society was burning with energy, lust for life, and a spirit of optimism. A film that didn’t let anything or anyone stop it became a cult through its pace and rousing soundtrack, an expression of an attitude towards life.
Of course, such an event cannot be repeated, if only because the (music) world is different today. And thankfully, director Danny Boyle and the rest of the reassembled film crew aren’t even trying. The characters have grown old and tired. And not a bit more sensible. None of the four has his life under control. Unlike the first part, however, one is aware of this, the junkies look back on the past 20 years with a mixture of resignation and melancholy. T2 Trainspotting is often characterized by a previously unknown melancholy. Sometimes even damn sad. The first adaptation of the novel of the same name by Irvine Welsh was already reserved not been when it comes to showing drug hell. And the reunion has no reservations about turning the audience emotionally through the meat grinder.