"The Beggar is fucking psycho, but he's a mate, you know, so what can you do?"
Francis "Franco" Begbie is perhaps the most characteristic character in Trainspotting. In the movie he's brilliantly played by Robert Carlyle. Begbie doesn't have many appearances in the film, but his psycho-like appearance doesn't leave anyone cold and almost all the scenes he's in, there's bound to be a fight.
"Yeah, the guy's a psycho, but it's true, he's a mate as well, so what can you do? Just stand back and watch and try not to get involved. Begbie didn't do drugs either, he just did people. That's what he got off on: his own sensory addiction."
I think this is shown best in a scene where Begbie tells a story in a bar and after he's finished, casually tosses a pint over his shoulder, off a balcony. It shatters upon impact with the head of a woman below. He then puts his knife on the table, goes down the stairs and shouts: "All right. Nobody move. The girl got glassed and no cunt leaves here until we find out which cunt did it." A man stands up from a table and shouts: "Who the fuck are you?", which is exactly what Franco's been waiting for. He roars, gives the man a good kick on the balls, and a traditional bar fight starts right away.
"No way would I poison my body with that shite, all the fucking chemicals, no fucking way."
Begbie is the only one of the main characters, who doesn't do drugs. (He does people, as mentioned before.) He also thinks himself as a straight up guy, a leader and a bad-ass who everyone should respect. His response for Spud going to jail is:
"It was fucking obvious that that cunt was gonnae fuck some cunt."
...and to Spud's mother:
"It's no our fault. Your boy went down because he was fucking smack-head and if that's not your fault, I don't know what is."
Although the bad-ass psycho Begbie is, he is also a very humorous character. He tries, for example, to rob a jewelry store with a toy gun (he's charged with armed robbery, which is a "fucking scandal"), getting nothing but frippery. And there are of course his intense moments with a transvestite...
"You see, if you ask me, we're heterosexual by default, not by decision. It's just a question of who you fancy. It's all about aesthetics and it's fuck all to do with morality. But you try telling Begbie that."
Well, in the end, Begbie ends up trashing a hotel room, cops knocking at the door, Born Slippy playing in the background. Not a very happy ending for him, but what did you expect? With the words of Renton:
"Begbie, I couldn't give a shit about him."