20 years after Trainspotting took the cinema world by storm and introduced us to skinny jeans and nouveau heroin chic, T2 takes us back to Scotland to visit with the characters 2 decades later, featuring the original director, writer, and cast.
This is not a typical sequel, it doesn't rehash the previous film nor does it strive to replicate the high energy experience of the original - it's a true sequel that takes into regard that 20 years have actually passed and much has changed. While the characters are familiar, we join them on a new story arc and examine their lives as some remain mired in the consequences of the past.
In a way this film stands on its own, as it doesn't necessarily lean on the original and strives to provide something original.
But it's not just a 20 year journey with these characters, its important to note that the film is also an expression of Danny Boyle's journey as a filmmaker. Trainspotting was his breakthrough and in the next 20 years he's had an entire career unfold, and T2 does not ignore that. It doesn't pretend that Boyle is still a young artist in the 90's; T2 is clearly the work of a veteran who has created pieces within many different genres and now brings his original vision back, full circle. In this respect, T2 is quite remarkable. It's not a cash-grab sequel, it's not a comforting re-visit, it's an actual new chapter in the lives of the characters.
But while T2 differs from Trainspotting in this regards, it will not disappoint fans as there are several moments/scenes that genuinely rank up there with the best parts of the first one - what we could call "classic Danny Boyle moments".
It was sad to see this film come and go in the US with little to no fanfare. Seems like audiences were "meh".... despite the gonzo popularity of the original movie. This is a very underrated sequel and worthy entry in Boyle's filmography. Fans will not be disappointed, just don't expect a nostalgic trip back to the mid-90's. Cinema buffs won't be disappointed either as Danny Boyle gives us a well-acted and finely stylized tale of reckless youth now ageing itself right out of life.