Generally favorable reviews - based on 30 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 30
  2. Negative: 3 out of 30

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Critic Reviews

  1. 60
    The film lacks the turbulent social context of the 1950s and '60s that lent resonance to the personal uncertainties of Ibgy's forebears -- Holden Caufield, Ben Braddock, et al. But Culkin has a way with quip-heavy dialogue that transforms what might otherwise been irritatingly, solipsistic posing into a great performance.
  2. Hammers home its tragicomic points too heavily for either its humorous or dramatic aspects to gather much emotional steam.
  3. Wall Street Journal
    Reviewed by: Joe Morgenstern
    Igby has his own prickly charisma and bleak humor; he's a character you'd like very much to embrace. But he's surrounded by insufferable fools in the airless Manhattan universe of a film that's as offputtingly precocious as its preppy hero.
  4. Reviewed by: Ed Park
    Culkin broods and freaks out ably, but Igby's snotty, dysfunction-derived malaise remains off-putting, mostly because his lines aren't half as clever or empathic as Steers would believe.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 64 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 34 out of 47
  2. Negative: 7 out of 47
  1. DaveM.
    Aug 28, 2007
    Extraordinary cast and performances by all. Cinematography is great of the East Coast cities portrayed. A must see.
  2. May 4, 2016
    Igby is going down.... the drain along with the several other people who has gave negative ratings on this film. Igby Goes Down definitelyIgby is going down.... the drain along with the several other people who has gave negative ratings on this film. Igby Goes Down definitely works out a lot for a charm-buster. Full Review »
  3. Feb 19, 2015
    This review contains spoilers, click full review link to view. "Igby Goes Down" is my personal favourite coming-of-age film. I also consider it one of the most underrated films of the 2000s. The story of a rebellious and privileged misfit from an upper-class family that is as dysfunctional as it is wealthy, it plays somewhat like a reinterpretation of "The Catcher in the Rye". That is a comparison that has been made by several others, but it's an apt comparison nonetheless; director/writer Burr Steers understands Igby as well as J.D. Salinger understood Holden Caulfield. And as well as Salinger realised Holden on the page, the ideally-cast Kieran Culkin realises Igby just as well on-screen. Igby is a kid who's grown up the straight man in a perniciously dysfunctional family that expects him to be perfect when they are anything but. He resents this, quite understandably, and this resentment manifests in a rebellious streak Culkin communicates with impeccably-timed and lacerating sarcasm. And the resentment has fostered a palpable sense of loneliness, which is painfully evident at several points throughout the film and also conveyed beautifully by Culkin. Igby's monologue when a one-shot lover rejects him in favour of his brother is the best showcase for this. This is not a one-note portrayal. Culkin has a lot of material to handle, requiring a range of emotions, and he pulls it off seamlessly. That he towers above a cast of acting heavyweights such as Susan Sarandon, Jeff Goldblum, and Bill Pullman is testament to what an astonishing achievement his performance in this film is. The closing scenes, particularly a moment involving Igby and his father, is among the most moving finishes to a film I've ever beheld. Full Review »