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Mark Renton (Ewan McGregor), a young man with few prospects and fewer ambitions, lives in economically depressed Edinburgh. Like most of his friends, Renton is a heroin addict who loves the drug's blissful nothingness; financing his habit also provides excitement and challenges that his life otherwise lacks. Renton's two best friends are also junkies: Sick Boy (Jonny Lee Miller), a snappy dresser obsessed with James Bond, and Spud (Ewan Bremner), a guileless nerd who suggests Pee Wee Herman's debauched cousin. Renton and his pals also hang out with Begbie (Robert Carlyle), a… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 89%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Trainspotting's saving grace is that there's a heck of a lot of entertainment value in this particular form of shallowness."
‑ Jay Boyar, Orlando Sentinel
"Trainspotting is a searing pop-art portrait of a lost generation blowing out its brains. As they rail, chuckle, shout and dive into darkness, you're trapped yourself between a bellylaugh and a scream."
‑ Michael Wilmington, Chicago Tribune
"By turns cheeky, surreal, exhilarating and stomach-churning."
‑ , TV Guide's Movie Guide
"Funny, disturbing, tragic and deeply addictive."
‑ Jon Fortgang, Film4
"Heroin, as it turns out, provides the characters in Trainspotting with something the filmmakers can't -- motivation. Without the drug, Boyle can't convincingly explain the actions of Renton and his friends."
‑ Gary Thompson, Philadelphia Daily News
"Trainspotting, buoyed by a great Brit Pop soundtrack and Brian Tufano's agile cinematography, captures the stoned-out, gut-churning experience of hardcore addiction with hallucinogenic acuity."
‑ Steven Rea, Philadelphia Inquirer
"The film is about joy -- in conniving and surviving, in connecting with audiences, in its own fizzy, jizzy style. And that's why, compared with it, most other films look zombified."
‑ Richard Corliss, TIME Magazine
"Brazen, hilarious, disgusting, audacious, altogether fresh."
‑ Ann Hornaday, Baltimore Sun
"A grimy bolt of celluloid lightning unspooling at 24 crackling frames a second, this episodic tale of smart-aleck Scottish lads on heroin is the year's most exciting film -- and surely its most controversial."
‑ Rod Dreher, South Florida Sun-Sentinel
"Unapologetic and hard-hitting, Irvine Welsh's controversial bestseller is brought to the screen as a dazzling assault on the senses."
‑ Alan Jones, Radio Times
"The characters are without recognizable virtues, and neither they nor the movie asks us to like them. But they are full of energy and underplayed wit, endlessly picking themselves up off the filthy floor."
‑ Michael Wood, Slate
"A cocktail of scuzzy charm, nerve and despair that seduces and repulses in nearly equal proportions. It packs a jolt, all right. But it leaves you with a brutal hangover, too."
‑ Hal Hinson, Washington Post
"An unprecedented and unrivalled piece of entertainment."
‑ Neil Jeffries, Empire Magazine
"All this doped-up ennui eventually proves wearing. Junkies, given to nodding out and living in squalor, don't make good company for too long."
‑ Leah Rozen, People Magazine
"There's no denying that the visual imagery boasted by Danny Boyle's Trainspotting rivals anything you're likely to see on the big screen."
‑ Dan Webster, Spokesman-Review (Washington)
More reviews for Trainspotting on Rotten Tomatoes

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