CHUD.com Community › Forums › THE MAIN SEWER › Focused Film Discussion › T2: Trainspotting Post-Release
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

T2: Trainspotting Post-Release

post #1 of 33
Thread Starter 

I'm still not entirely sure why they went for that title. Either way, everyone can relax because it's good.

 

There's actually a lot more of Porno in it than I expected. The central scam is different and generally of less importance, and the focus is split across the main four characters a lot more evenly than the book (which almost felt like a Sick Boy solo novel at times).

 

Porno is a lesser book but I'd say this adapted it about as well as the first film did, and where they diverge they often managed to avoid the weaker points and add depth.

 

The main criticism it's going to get is that it's very much a love letter to both the first film and the books, and it's not subtle about it. It gets a little cute with the winks at times, and towards the end it turns into an orgy of self-referentiality that comes close to breaking the fourth wall, until...

Warning: final shot spoiler! (Click to show)
...finally the fourth wall quite literally disappears and the film gets locked into an infinite feedback loop.

It's a film about itself.

 

But the characters are still great, the actors are still great, Danny Boyle dials his Danny Boyleness up to 11, and it tickled, repulsed, shocked, scared and moved me at various points. It is what it is with enormous gusto.

post #2 of 33

yay!!

post #3 of 33
Thank Lucifer.
post #4 of 33

Yeah, just caught this. Left the cinema with a big grin on my face. Sick Boy's meta rant about "This isn't a memorial, this is nostalgia. It's a vacation through your youth" applies, but it's shot well, the performances are good and the soundtrack is pretty cool.

 

I thought the "Choose Life" segment was painfully shoe horned in, and could have been handled better... and Kelly McDonald was wasted... but overall it served as it's own film well enough and as a welcome return to the lives of these four reprobates.

 

And kudos for including the Trainspotting title explanation scene from the book that was not in the original film. Seeing it now, it fits more perfectly in this film than it would have in the original.

post #5 of 33

I'm very pleased to hear that it's good.  The first film is a minor miracle and I was genuinely afraid of how this sequel would turn out.

post #6 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by flint View Post

I thought the "Choose Life" segment was painfully shoe horned in, and could have been handled better...

Yeah that sequence was clunky as hell.

I enjoyed this about as much as I hoped it would. It doesn't have anywhere near the punch the first one did, but what does? Like Paul said, it leans on the strength of the first to its detriment. Member when he got hit by the car? I member. The biggest emotional moment is just a callback to baby Dawn.

I also thought it went abit too broad at times. I certainly wouldn't say the first is grounded but Begbie's caper at the beginning bordered on cartoonish.

With all that said, I can't see many people being disappointed. It's a wonderfully made film that happens to be a sequel to a masterpiece. Considering most sequels that come decades later are wank it's a bit of a miracle.
post #7 of 33

Speaking of Begbie, is he still just as insane as he was in the first film?

post #8 of 33
Thread Starter 

I don't think Begbie fans will be disappointed. He's definitely played broad and borderline cartoony in a way that could easily have backfired, but IMO they get away with it because he is scary and funny, and it takes you into his background and psychology a bit more while they're at it. They even use him for a bit of timely 'working classes left behind' social commentary.

 

Now I've sat with it a couple of days I'm still pretty happy with it. I'm not sure the plot really stands up to scrutiny (

Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Like, do Renton and Sick Boy owe the council £100,000 now? Wouldn't they be a little more upset about that? I also felt it maybe could've used an extra scene or two between the characters to wrap things up. Renton in particular's basically left in limbo at the end of the film

), but the more eye-rolley nostalgia doesn't really hurt it and a lot of the most memorable parts of it are new. I never got that sinking "oh... this isn't working, is it?" feeling you often get about 20 minutes into these kind of reunion films. In fact if Boyle wanted to do Skagboys and make it a trilogy, I think I'd be up for that.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by flint View Post
 

And kudos for including the Trainspotting title explanation scene from the book that was not in the original film. Seeing it now, it fits more perfectly in this film than it would have in the original.

 

This is the stuff I'm most interested to hear about from people who haven't read the books. 

Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
The literal quoting of the books worked well enough for me because I got that "oh I see where they're going with this" penny drop moment, and they were quoting great bits. I've no idea how well that stuff plays for people who haven't read them, though.
 
I haven't read Porno in a while, I seem to remember Spud's story kind of hints at what they did in the film here, but was nowhere near as explicitly meta about it.

Edited by Paul C - 1/30/17 at 7:38am
post #9 of 33

Yeah, In Porno Spud writes a history of Leith - and it's nowhere near as well received as his meta-Welsh memoirs are in T2. I liked this version better, though. Spud's story in Porno ends up just becoming an exercise in being as relentlessly depressing as possible, to the point where it almost feels exploitative.

 

I'd agree that the 'choose life' speech landed with a bit of a clunk. For me it was down to it being very obviously - and clumsily - ADR'd in a way that detracted from the performance.

 

Overall though, I really dug the film. Funny that its broad moments have been raised in the thread, because it's a generally more somber affair than the first film (Which had its fair share of pantomime-y moments itself). Maybe it's because the overall tone of the film is quieter and more melancholy that the broad stuff sticks out, but I thought it tied in well with the film's leeriness towards nostalgia, while understanding its appeal. For me, it felt like the bits that most closely resemble the first film, especially the broader scenes, are meant to play slightly uncomfortably because it reflects the characters' slipping into old habits while knowing that they're now in different places. 

post #10 of 33
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Workyticket View Post
 

Spud's story in Porno ends up just becoming an exercise in being as relentlessly depressing as possible

 

There's one particularly repellent scene in Porno, I'm betting you'll know which one I'm thinking of, that for a moment I thought they were going to restage here in that scene with Spud, Begbie and the new girl. Probably for the they kept well away from that one.

post #11 of 33
This was nice. I liked it. I didn't laugh much, but really enjoyed the bittersweet melancholy of it all.

Hehehe, Sick Boy is actually more like Stink Eye in this movie.
post #12 of 33
I liked it, too. The updated "Choose Life" monologue is wonderful.

ETA: I guess Workyticket didn't think so.
post #13 of 33

ooooh, also!

 

this movie is filled to the brim with freeze-frames!

 

I was so happy!

post #14 of 33
In less than an hour. Pretty excited.
post #15 of 33
I'm excited for you.
post #16 of 33
Good movie. Morose and unresolved, which was interesting. It takes balls to effectively leave all of these characters out in the wilderness to come to terms with their age and their failures to find a sense of continuity in their lives. It really was like seeing old friends again, even cunts like Mikey Forrester, who I did not expect to see looking spiffy and running his own little criminal enterprise.

Is it as good as the original? No, of course not, but it's a worthy "state of affairs" follow-up and I'm so happy that Spud got to be the heart of it. Materially, he had less than any of them, but perhaps consequently, understood himself better than any of them.
post #17 of 33
Oh, and one criticism I have is that while I love Kelly MacDonald, her cameo felt like the least organic part of the film insofar as returning characters are concerned. I did, of course, love the music and felt it was thematically appropriate to use a remix of Lust for Life to end Renton's arc on. It feels like it's saying new things can happen with the same person. Kind of hopeful, or at least pregnant with possibility.
post #18 of 33
Pregnant with possibility.
post #19 of 33
a cadence of releases...
post #20 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bradito View Post

Pregnant with possibility.


You've not heard that turn of phrase before?
post #21 of 33
I haven't. My life is pregnant with no good turns of phrase.
post #22 of 33
I think it's pretty good. The phrase I mean, not your life. :-(
post #23 of 33
Indeed.
post #24 of 33

Thanks for your thoughts, Johnny. I, now definitely seeing this.  And I love that phrase, first read it in Dick Gregory's book N*gger - "I was pregnant with poverty".

post #25 of 33
At the moment, I think I've got a good ten years before I can put myself in these character's shoes. In my life, I'm right in between where we left them and where we find them.
post #26 of 33
I hope I age like McGregor.

*keeps jogging*
post #27 of 33
I gotta brad for life!
post #28 of 33

Another thing is that I'm not sure how I feel about Veronika only becoming compelling in the last moments of the film. I think I understand what Boyle was doing there by having her play the role of "the pursued", causing the audience and the male characters to completely displace the notion that she might have her own aspirations wholly independent of any of the male characters, only for all parties concerned to get t-boned in the periphery. I get that, but as executed, I am not sure that it works. Diane has fewer scenes in Trainspotting than Veronika in T2 and she still makes a more significant impression as a character. This is not to say that Anjela Nedyalkova does a bad job, but aside from introducing her in the manner they do, even her rat-fucking Renton and Sick Boy, in the end, doesn't have the punch that I feel it should have. 

 

On a more positive note, I was genuinely worried for a good minute that Renton was going die at the hands of Begbie in the film's climax and just a few scenes earlier I thought there was a chance that Begbie, especially after the scene with his son, would actually cancel his vendetta. Ultimately, Begbie's arc lands on the idea that he can't really mingle out in the world. He's too angry and resentful and generally disturbed; he simply doesn't belong.

 

If there's one thing this film does exceedingly well, it's adding a lot of beneficial shading to characters whose iconography has perhaps become bigger than their humanity. Begbie and Spud come out of this thing with a much greater degree of dimensionality. How in the world did I miss the completely reasonable notion that Spud would blow the entire £4,000 on drugs? 

 

Oh, and I liked the new "Choose Life" monologue because while I definitely feel what Renton was talking about, it's made more interesting by the fact that the film sort of casts him as a sometimes intentionally, sometimes unintentionally disingenuous character. 

post #29 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by JacknifeJohnny View Post
 

Another thing is that I'm not sure how I feel about Veronika only becoming compelling in the last moments of the film. I think I understand what Boyle was doing there by having her play the role of "the pursued", causing the audience and the male characters to completely displace the notion that she might have her own aspirations wholly independent of any of the male characters, only for all parties concerned to get t-boned in the periphery. I get that, but as executed, I am not sure that it works. Diane has fewer scenes in Trainspotting than Veronika in T2 and she still makes a more significant impression as a character. This is not to say that Anjela Nedyalkova does a bad job, but aside from introducing her in the manner they do, even her rat-fucking Renton and Sick Boy, in the end, doesn't have the punch that I feel it should have. 

 

Oh, and I liked the new "Choose Life" monologue because while I definitely feel what Renton was talking about, it's made more interesting by the fact that the film sort of casts him as a sometimes intentionally, sometimes unintentionally disingenuous character. 

 

I agree that Veronika's place in the story doesn't really work on its own.  I'd say it's largely because it's not her story.  The way she screws over the crew similar to the way Renton did in TRAINSPOTTING is really only there as a repeat to that great ending.  And that ending is fantastically satisfying because we experience Renton's story from Renton's POV.  We totally FEEL the thrill of how and why he needs to get away from his MATES.  Veronika's story doesn't get that kind of storytelling to go with her victory.

 

As the movie went on and briefly established her life and motivations, it was obvious that she was gonna be the Renton at the end of the sequel.

 

I also liked the new Choose Life monologue (even how ridiculously ADR'ed it sounded and how 4th wall breaking it was) because I thought it played nicely into what Renton had revealed about his bitterness towards the life he chose since the first movie.  It also reminded me of Edward Norton's big FUCK YOU monologue from THE 25th HOUR.

 

 

Speaking of which... I'm not totally certain of this, but the sequel's use of Renton VO seemed sporadic and inconsistent.  I'm pretty sure it doesn't start with it during the montage that leads to him falling off the treadmill.  I think it just kinda comes in at some point without much flare.  Considering how much the original film was told through Renton's VO, I'm wondering what happened there.  Maybe that's why I liked the Choose Life monologue/montage.  You get to hear McGregor essentially doing VO again in a big way.

 

 

ALSO... I just had a woman at our store that reminded me of what Kevin McKidd looked like in TRAINSPOTTING.  Very nice customer.  Big smile!


Edited by mcnooj82 - 3/26/17 at 9:08pm
post #30 of 33

Agreed on all of that. The one scene that I think got the biggest physical reaction out of me was in the restroom. That quick back and forth, followed by flashes of realization, and then the "split-screen" medium shot of Begbie making his way up the wall as Renton is working through his disbelief...it's fantastic. I was literally squirming about and stifling an "Oh, shit! Oh, shit!" chuckle. 

post #31 of 33

the movie does a great job of keeping Begbie a formidable time-bomb the whole time

 

it does such a good job of it, that the final moment between him and his son (as well as his reaction to Spud's writing) caught me off guard

 

but in the end... Begbie's gotta Begbie...

post #32 of 33

This is a piece written by Irvine Welsh in 02/2016 for his novel The Blade Artist (a semi-sequel to Trainspotting focused on Francis Begbie)

 

Quote:
 

Working-class heroes

I think part of Begbie’s success as a fictional character lies in his crazy gear changes. He can quickly switch from raging, incandescent nutter to cold-bloodied psychopath, and back again. Violence oozes from him and crackles around him as it’s sucked into his orbit. By turn, he’s in control of it and it’s in control of him. He literally could explode at any time. Such characters are great to meet in fiction: in real life, not so much.

Sadly, Begbie resonates with such force in Western culture because there are so many angry men around. In the US they range from the paid-off farm hands and factory workers right through to silver-spooned billionaires who have had to contend with nothing but extreme privilege.

The worst of them rage loudly and bitterly, fearing the displacement of the white patriarchy’s power by the other; be they women, blacks, Mexicans, homosexuals. They have an audience of the confused and the bitter. In the UK their equivalents believe that a city stockbroker ‘gets them’. Those are life’s habitual losers; brown-nosing playground cowards sucking up to the loudmouthed bully. These racist and misogynistic kindergarten fascists feel their skin tone or under-used penises (porcelain and own hands excepted) affords them the shabby entitlement to abuse others not of their race or gender, while coattailing on the achievements of those who are.

But – and here is the crucial distinction – these are a vocal minority. There are far more everyday working-class men displaced by post-industrialism, who are very unhappy and frustrated. They have seen their antecedents fight for an empire, save the world from Nazism, been given a welfare state that has then been yanked out from under their feet, been sold the fool’s gold of establishment bullsh*t from ‘Homes fit for heroes’ to ‘A property-owning democracy’. They’ve been promised the world, only to end up with low, or no, wages, high debts and zero prospects, and still patronised and at the bottom of the pile. This I empathise with: these are people from my own family, circle of friends and wider community.

A big problem is that the bourgeois liberal fails to distinguish between the two groups, witnessing only the anger and resentment. Note to such people: by doing this you are acting as recruiting sergeants for Ukip. Working-class anger, especially when expressed collectively, is always threatening to elites. Underpinning this visceral distaste is the base fear that the have-nots will, one day, take from the haves. This has been the case since the hysteria about the Victorian mob, to the moral panic on football hooligans, to the current trade union bill. 

 

http://www.shortlist.com/entertainment/books/irvine-welsh-on-the-return-of-begbie

post #33 of 33
Thread Starter 

I'll be interested to read The Blade Artist. I've seen some criticism that it gets a bit on the nose with Begbie, who in three books showed almost no capacity for insight whatsoever, turning into a mouthpiece for Welsh and spouting off jargon filled political philosophy all of a sudden.

 

But I thought the stuff Welsh is talking about there was handled well with Begbie's "what's left for men like me?" speech in T2. It gets the same point across but it didn't feel like they had to stretch the limits of the character to do it.

 

Still pretty pleased with this film overall! Wouldn't mind watching it again.

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Focused Film Discussion
CHUD.com Community › Forums › THE MAIN SEWER › Focused Film Discussion › T2: Trainspotting Post-Release