In case it hasn't been made clear by a dozen or so films already, being a slum kid in a city like Glasgow sucks -- hard. Poor James (William Eadie) deals with a deadbeat dad and a hysterical mother, haunted by the memory of her other son, who drowned in the local canal. James's ostensible "friends" are the local bullies -- the only person he has a real connection with is the local teenage whore. In a world dominated by rats and other vermin, James tries to find his way the best he can -- which isn't saying a whole lot. Gritty and realistic, yet flecked with curious scenes of surreality, Ratcatcher is a bit better than this kind of fare usually turns out, difficult but rewarding.