Danny Boyle's T2 Trainspotting is a worthy predecessor to the breakout original film, a sequel that is bristling with the same energy that made the first film so memorable, while maintaining an ability to differentiate itself from the nihilistic drug opus through its ability to deliver a story about consequences, morality, and maturity. Taking place twenty years after the events of the first film, T2 Trainspotting finds Mark Renton returning to Edinburgh for the first time since betraying his friends and running off with most of the money from the scam. Intent on reconnecting with Spud and Simon, Mark soon finds that each of his friends' lives have hardly improved over the past two decades, each stuck in a perpetual state of failure. While Spud struggles to get his life back together, routinely falling back off the wagon and into addiction, Simon is still stuck in the confines of his father's decrepit bar, living on the outskirts of Edinburgh, which has seen itself modernized via gentrification. While Mark, Simon, and Spud attempt to reconcile, the psychotic Begbie makes his way out of jail, having the fresh scent of revenge on his mind. A natural progression for a sequel to the original, Danny Boyle's T2 Trainspotting is a film that maintains the first film's renegade spirit, while still examining the morality and consequences of its character's actions as they reach middle age. These characters wouldn't be classified as upstanding citizens, not even close, but the film recognizes that they don't have to fit into what society terms is proper or just, instead they simply have to adhere to their own sense of empathy and morality towards on and other. These characters grew up as junkies and thieves, and while the film doesn't outright apologize for that, or touch on some form of type of stringent moral equivalency, the film details how each of these characters must deal with the consequences of their past, facing head-on at times the trauma, despair, and evil which their actions created. Even Bigbie, a psychotic character who spends most of the film in a rage-fueled pursuit of revenge, has at least one moment of clarity, wishing his son the best, showing a sliver of empathy for his son, whom he wishes will be a better man than him. Featuring the same high-energy direction from Danny Boyle which sees the filmmaker intertwine surrealistic touches throughout this story, T2 Trainspotting is visceral yet quietly contemplative, delivering in a strange way a film that is far more optimistic and hopeful compared to the first film's raw nihilism. Detailing the journey of three characters in Mark, Simon, and Spud, T2: Trainspotting exhibits three men who've seen life pass them bye thanks to their actions and past mistakes, establishing that it's never too late in life to correct past mistakes.
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