Generally favorable reviews - based on 30 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 62 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: Igby Slocumb (Culkin), a rebellious and sarcastic seventeen-year-old boy, is at war with the stifling world of "old money" privilege he was born in to. (MGM/UA)
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 30
  2. Negative: 3 out of 30
  1. Gets weirder and meaner and darker and sadder as it progresses, which is amazing since it simultaneously remains funny and horrifying right up to the end.
  2. Wickedly funny, jarringly transgressive, obdurately unpigeonholeable and startlingly moving.
  3. 88
    An inspired example of the story in which the adolescent hero discovers that the world sucks, people are phonies, and sex is a consolation. Because the genre is well established, what makes the movie fresh is smart writing, skewed characters, and the title performance by Kieran Culkin.
  4. 80
    Young Kieran Culkin holds his own against a stellar ensemble in Igby Goes Down, a family comedy so dark it turns "The Royal Tennebaums" into latter-day Bradys.
  5. Culkin is superb - he makes you forget that Igby is a spoiled brat who actually deserves the beating he gets.
  6. Steers' film will likely polarize the audience, which, if nothing else, gives it rare resonance; at least it makes you feel, where many similar indie efforts make you sleepy.
  7. Its motif is self-pity, Steers displays no particular way with a scene, and, as Igby, Culkin exudes none of the charm or charisma that might keep a more general audience even vaguely interested in his bratty character.

See all 30 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 35 out of 45
  2. Negative: 7 out of 45
  1. DaveM.
    Aug 28, 2007
    Extraordinary cast and performances by all. Cinematography is great of the East Coast cities portrayed. A must see.
  2. JoseR.
    Nov 7, 2005
    Amazingly casted, tremendously acted, superbly directed. From the very first scene of this film, you want to get wring every little drop out of it. Every conversation is bursting with pop culture references; if you're bored it's because you're not listening. Kieran Culkin is a gem, the Marlon Brando of our times. Expand
  3. LolitaA.
    Feb 27, 2006
    One of those movies that just makes you feel good when you watch it. Once over your "feel good feeling" you begin to realize what an amazing movie, in fact, you've just seen. Kieran Culkin is, frankly, charming. Expand
  4. WiliamB.
    Dec 7, 2005
    Having observed this social class from the vantage point of a middle-class kid who got to go to private school, I find Igby accurate and funny. Ryan Phillipe is particularly hilarious as Igby's brother, and it's a funny script all the way through. A dire update of Salinger, with many funny moments. Recommended to preppies, New York division. Expand
  5. Feb 23, 2013
    I really love these weird independent comedies, that you have to be somewhat intelligent to understand. They are so much different from all the repetitive crap that we are subjected to over and over again. This is the story of a kid from a privileged family who just doesn't fit in. He sees the hypocrisy of it all and decides to run away to NYC, where he meets some unique characters that you'd only find in New York. The middle Culkin brother, Kieran, stars and was incredible. Simply put, sometimes the story is good, but the movie is made by its star, and Culkin gives one of the best performances I've seen in a film like this. Igby Goes Down has a ton of stars, it's a clever story, and you really connect to the characters. I really enjoyed this film, but be warned, it's not for everybody. I honestly believe when it comes to this type of film, you need a personality that relates to some aspect of the film. Without that connection, you might not get as much out of this film as others did. Expand
  6. Aug 28, 2012
    If you enjoy movies like "Running with Scissors" or "Breakfast on Pluto", I think you will like this. It has a really similar structure, you follow a young boy with a dysfunctional life through a period of this life. And like those previous movies mentioned this really is more of a dramady then a striahgt comedy or drama, but alot lighter than the other movies. As for the acting, normally actors overplay sarcastic type characters but Kieran Culkin was great, he's sarcastic but not annoying. This was definitely his movie. And Ryan Phillippe was the perfect choice for the douchebag/elitist brother, he just naturally comes off as one because of this voice and speech pattern. As for the rest of the cast, they were all very good. The writing and direction was fine, although I didn't really like the ending and there they went with Amanda Peets' character. A fine movie worth watching, 7.5/10 Expand
  7. MichaelH.
    Oct 7, 2002
    [***Potential first scene Spoiler***] Igby is an insufferable character, so insufferable in fact, that by the end of the movie, I was wishing he'd taken the poison instead of his mother. The ultra-hip think there is some great revelation in this movie (see review by Slate), but there isn't; it's just good looking crap. Expand

See all 45 User Reviews