Today’s IMDB Top 250 Guest Review comes from Mark of Marked Movies. He’s also reviewed Heat (HERE) and Argo (HERE) and The Big Lebowski (HERE). Thanks for all the reviews, Mark! 🙂 Now let’s hear his thoughts on Trainspotting, IMDB rank 151 out of 250…
There are still some movies up for grabs if anyone wants to do a guest IMDB Top 250 review. You can find the list of remaining films HERE. See the full list & links to all the reviews that have already been done HERE.
Also, if you’d like to add a link to your IMDB Review(s) on your own blogs, feel free to use any of the logos I’ve used at the top of any of these guest reviews. I know I’ve made a few that are specific to the movie being reviewed. I’ll also do an IMDB update post soon & will post some more logos.
Director: Danny Boyle.
Screenplay: John Hodge.
Starring: Ewan McGregor, Robert Carlyle, Ewen Bremner, Kevin McKidd, Jonny Lee Miller, Kelly MacDonald, Peter Mullan, James Cosmo, Eileen Nicholas, Shirley Henderson, Pauline Lynch, Stuart McQuarrie, Keith Allen, Kevin Allen, Dale Winton, Irvine Welsh.
Director Danny Boyle’s marvellous debut “Shallow Grave” was always going to be a hard act to follow but to attempt an adaptation of the ‘unfilmable’ Scottish novel “Trainspotting” by Irvine Welsh, seemed like lunacy. Boyle, however, captures Welsh’s book brilliantly and despite “Slumdog Millionaire” gathering him a best director Oscar, this still remains his best film.
It follows the lives of a group of friends from Edinburgh as they experience the high’s and low’s of life through heroin use. Renton (Ewan McGregor) decides to go clean and rid himself of his affliction and his low-life chums but finds that’s easier said than done. Spud (Ewen Bremner) is too needy, SickBoy (Jonny Lee Miller) is too controling, Tommy (Kevin McKidd) has just taken some bad direction and Begbie (Robert Carlyle) is just plain pychotic. Renton, however, enters into making a one off drug deal with his old pals, so as to make a new life for himself altogether.
Boyle’s film has often been criticised as glorifying drug use. Glorifying drug use? Really? People who believe this must have been watching a different film. The characters involved all behave despicably. They are responsible for thefts, fights, deaths – including the death of a baby. Get imprisoned. Contract HIV. Ruin their lives and others’, all because of their drug habit. What this film has in depth, vibrancy and fun, is the reason it could be mistaken for being pro-drug use but having these qualities is more of a testament to the filmmakers involved, in making a bleak and depressing subject matter, very entertaining. The characters are extremely well written (kudos to writer Welsh) and acted by an ensemble of excellent actors. It made a star of Ewan McGregor, who’s character, although likeable – and brilliantly played – is essentially the person responsible for the downfall of many of the other characters. Notable other performances are Ewen Bremner as “Spud”, the most endearing of the group and a character too gentle for his lifestyle. The best of the bunch though, is Robert Carlyle as the psychotic “Begbie”, who’s choice of drug isn’t heroin but violence – and he’s just as destructive with it. He’s a dangerous and highly volatile person and Carlyle perfectly captures the on-edge feeling of his terrifying unpredictability. It’s an award worthy performance that was sadly overlooked. Everything about the film reeks of class. From it’s rollicking soundtrack, to the rich, snappy dialogue, with great characters in hilarious situations and kinetic fast paced direction. This film has everything going for it and stands as one of the finest films of the 1990′s.
A relentlessly energetic experience that leaves you craving for more, much like the habit of it’s protaganists.
Pure uncut, Class A.
Very nice, Muckers!! Very, very nice!
Boat Drinks bro! 🙂
Hey! Eric! Why wasn’t the “boat drinks” movie on your list for me?! I MIGHT have that one! Not sure…
It’s a fantastic film, Mark. Well done review. John Hodge’s screenplay is brilliant and the acting incredible. There’s not enough superlatives. The cold, hopeless setting of Scotland, the horrible effects of drug use, the “lost generation” —and Kelly MacDonald! It is a true horror story.
Carlyle was my favourite of the whole the bunch, Cindy, but the most impressive was probably John Hodge’s screenplay. Deservedly Oscar nominated for his work on adapting a very difficult novel.
Hings are braw, ya bawbag! 😉
Magnificent film. Great point about Danny Boyle and co turning a dour subject into an entertaining one. Top work Mark!
Cheers Mate! You should read more of Irvine Welsh’s books, though. I think you’re a kid-on Scotsman! 😉
Dammit, I thought you’d forgotten…
Haha! I’m still waiting on your opinion of his novels. Trainspotting is without a doubt, his best but It’s sequel Porno is also great stuff. I’m currently finishing the prequel Skagboys where all the characters are in their youth before getting into the drug scene.
Wow, I had no idea he’d written related novels! Guess it would make sense given the whole film sequel discussion.
Out of interest, do you prefer reading a particular book and then watching the film, or vice-versa?
Great job Mark, I love this movie and you are right it doesn’t glorify drug use it shows the really, really bad stuff that goes with it!
I was amazed when some claimed it glorified drug use. I’m not judgmental (or adverse) to the occasional dabble in herbal and chemical remedies but to depict it in such a brutal and realistic fashion is entirely commendable. I LOVE this movie.
Thanks again for having me Disco Girl. One of my top five favourite films. I just love this film and I’m really hoping the planned sequel actually happens.
Thank YOU once again for another review! : ) Sorry I’m so late on finally catching up on my blog. I like this film a lot too. But like the soundtrack even more. Good stuff! Not watched this since moving to the UK over ten years ago – am sure I’d have zero problem with the accents now! : )
Sturdy review as always Mark. . . now, the tough part.
Admitting I haven’t seen this. . .
TOM! I’m starting to think you haven’t seen ANYTHING! Lol. ; )
Oh, that’s b/c I haven’t! 🙂
You’re young – there’s still time ; )
I haven’t watched this in years. The baby upset me so much. I remember it being great though. Maybe time for another go.
The baby bit was super disturbing : (
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