7.5/10
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Ratcatcher (1999)

Not Rated | | Drama | 12 November 1999 (UK)
Glasgow, summer, 1973. Dustmen are striking; bags of garbage add to the blight of council flats and a fetid canal. Ryan, who's about 12, drowns during a play fight with his neighbor, the ... See full summary »

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12 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Da
Mandy Matthews ...
Ma
William Eadie ...
James
Michelle Stewart ...
Ellen
Lynne Ramsay Jr. ...
Anne Marie (as Lynne Ramsay Jnr.)
Leanne Mullen ...
Margaret Anne
John Miller ...
Kenny
Jackie Quinn ...
Mrs. Quinn
James Ramsay ...
Mr. Quinn
Anne McLean ...
Mrs. Fowler
Craig Bonar ...
Matt Monroe
Andrew McKenna ...
Billy
Mick Maharg ...
Stef
James Montgomery ...
Hammy
Thomas McTaggart ...
Ryan
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Storyline

Glasgow, summer, 1973. Dustmen are striking; bags of garbage add to the blight of council flats and a fetid canal. Ryan, who's about 12, drowns during a play fight with his neighbor, the jug-eared James. James runs home, a flat where he lives with his often-drunk da, his ma, and sisters, who live in hope of moving to newly-built council flats. The slice-of-life, coming-of-age story follows James as he tags along with the older lads; has a friendship with his quirky wee rodent-loving neighbor, Kenny; spends time with Margaret Anne, myopic, slightly older, the local sexual punching bag; and, has a moment or two of joy. The strike may end, but is there any way out for James? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

12 November 1999 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Nazwij to snem  »

Box Office

Budget:

$30,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£52,378 (UK) (12 November 1999)

Gross:

$216,781 (USA) (27 April 2001)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Although this film is in English, the US release has English subtitles because all the characters speak in a very heavy Scottish accent. See more »

Goofs

A radio announcer mentions a football score "Stirling Albion 20, Selkirk 0." That game was played in 1984, not in the early 70's when the film was set. See more »

Quotes

Kenny: Goodbye, Snowball!
See more »

Connections

References Kill the Day (2000) See more »

Soundtracks

Gassenhauer
from Orff-Schulwerk
By Carl Orff and Gunild Keetman
Volume 1, Musica Portica (Celestial Harmonies 13104-2)
Courtesy of Celestial Harmonies
(p) 1995 Celestial Harmonies
By permission of Schott and Company Ltd London
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Tarkovskian?
13 December 2002 | by ((e.g. London, England)) – See all my reviews

"Ratcatcher" is a fairly auspicious debut for a young director. Lynne Ramsay has a powerful command of the visual aspects of filmmaking (dare I say it – approaching the poetic images of Tarkovsky) but her narrative authority is a lot less notable. This is a film in the manner of "Kes" but without the true humanity that that film had in spades. "Kes" is a masterpiece of social-realist humanism because the element of hope is never obvious but is always apparent; I think "Rosetta" is similar in this regard, too. But in recent Scottish cinema, in particular, there seems to be a masochist pleasure in dwelling on representing the worst kinds of poverty and despair, merely to serve a sensationalist agenda. In this respect I'm referring to films like "Small Faces", "Stella Does Tricks" and to a lesser degree "Trainspotting" (a film with other benefits overshadowing its gleeful focus on abject misery). This is an aspect of "Ratcatcher" which soon becomes wearying through the constancy of its emphasis – the images of garbage, vermin, filth and indigence becomes all consuming. But with that said, Ramsay's aesthetic approach is always interesting and at times incredibly poetic and beautiful. Some scenes of whimsical fantasy may seem laboured but they do lighten the load of the film's relentless social-realist agenda.


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