T2 Trainspotting: A sure-fire hit, well worth the wait

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DRUGS, violence and retribution. They say the more things change, the more they stay the same and twenty years on nothing could be more true for Renton, Sick Boy, Spud and Begbie in Danny Boyle’s nostalgic yet strangely evocative and long-awaited sequel to Trainspotting.

You might be able to take the boys out of Leith but you can’t take Leith out the boys in T2, which is based loosely on Irvine Welsh’s novel Porno.

Though more than two decades may have passed since the first movie, the on-screen chemistry shared by Ewan McGregor, Jonny Lee Miller, Ewen Bremner and Robert Carlyle is instantly rekindled.

Irvine Welsh has always been able to capture the North Edinburgh psyche and John Hodge’s screenplay perfectly paints the worlds of the Capital’s have and have nots with fine subversive strokes.

Retribution and betrayal may lie at the heart of Welsh’s iconic anti-heroes’ latest exploits, yet an unexpected tenderness emerges from the despair and desolation, creating some truly breathtaking moments of emotion.

Mirroring scenes from the original, Boyle directs with style and a darkly comedic flour, once again using the sights and sounds of the Capital as a constant co-star.

McGregor, Carlyle, Miller and Bremner slip into the skins of their characters with an enviable ease. Bremner’s older, still addicted Spud is a joy to behold and steals his every scene.

There are also a couple of local cameos, which complement the cleverly constructed moments of pure nostalgia. One in particular is long, long overdue.

A second fix of Renton and Co may have been a long time coming but T2 is a sure-fire hit that was worth the wait. Relax and choose T2.