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Lynne Ramsay's debut feature Ratcatcher is a gritty but often lyrical portrait of a boy growing up on the wrong side of the Scottish tracks. James (William Eadie) is a 12-year-old coming of age in a rough working-class section of Glasgow. Something of a misfit, James has only two close friends, Margaret Anne (Leanne Mullen), an older girl whose need to be loved often leads her into ill-advised sexual episodes with the neighborhood boys, and Kenny (John Miller), a half-bright kid who loves animals but isn't sure what went wrong when he tried to send his pet mouse into space. One day,… More
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 84%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Some may find such wrenching realities shocking, if not reprehensible. Others may glean meaning in their starkness -- a meaning that transcends the film's despair with the power of its truth."
‑ Bruce Westbrook, Houston Chronicle
"Lynne Ramsay bears watching. But when we talk about advances in the art of movies we have to be talking about leaps of feeling, not just leaps of technique."
‑ Charles Taylor, Salon.com
"Gritty yet beautiful coming-of-age film too dark for kids."
‑ Brian Costello, Common Sense Media
"Writer-director Ramsay has a deft touch throughout: Her actors all seem natural, and her occasional touches of magic realism...help to soften the blows of squalor."
‑ Luke Y. Thompson, New Times
"Difficult but rewarding"
‑ Christopher Null, Filmcritic.com
"Ramsay's imaginative shot-making gifts make for a sublime result, creating a different sort of magical realism than we're used to seeing."
‑ Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times
"Ratcatcher goes straight to the head."
‑ Marta Barber, Miami Herald
"This is often a stunningly, grimly beautiful film, but one that leaves a bitter aftertaste."
‑ MaryAnn Johanson, Flick Filosopher
"Ratcatcher is an inner-city tragedy that plays its story simply, sorrowfully, and beautifully."
‑ Kimberley Jones, Austin Chronicle
"A surprisingly assured and highly original directorial debut."
‑ Jeremy Heilman, MovieMartyr.com
"In any good film, the opening shot is telling, and Ratcatcher is a very good film."
‑ Rick Groen, Globe and Mail
"Ramsay tells much of the story through a series of images, each more marvellous than the last."
‑ Peter Howell, Toronto Star
"artful and astonishingly beautiful"
‑ Rich Cline, Shadows on the Wall
"Done so deftly, with such a exquisitely poetic touch and keen understanding of the paradoxical coexistence of filth and beauty in the world, that you can forgive some of its narrative triteness."
‑ James Kendrick, Q Network Film Desk
"William Eadie's acting helps make this drama an enlightening and intense experience."
‑ Harvey S. Karten, Compuserve
More reviews for Ratcatcher on Rotten Tomatoes