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DVD Review HTF REVIEW: "Igby Goes Down" (with screenshots)

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Ronald Epstein, Jan 14, 2003.

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  1. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Administrator
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    Real Name:
    Ronald Epstein
    [​IMG]

    Igby Goes Down




    Studio: MGM
    Year: 2002
    Rated: R
    Film Length: 98
    Aspect Ratio: 16X9 Enhanced Widescreen (2.35:1)
    Subtitles: English, French and Spanish



    Insanity is relative
    One of the toughest jobs I sometimes find as a
    reviewer is trying to make sense of what I just
    watched. Such is the case with Igby Goes Down.
    On the one hand, I found it to be a film full of
    witty dialogue and superb performances by its
    entire cast. On the other hand, it's a film
    filled with losers making it one of the most
    depressing films I have seen.
    [​IMG][​IMG]
    Igby (Kieran Culkin) is a young boy who is
    desperately trying to escape the horrors of his
    everyday life. He comes from a severely dysfunctional
    New York City family. There's his schizophrenic
    father, Jason (Bill Pullman); highly authorative
    Mother Mimi (Susan Sarandon); and overachieving
    brother Ollie (Ryan Phillippe). It's no wonder that
    a coldhearted family like this has produced a brat
    like Igby who is repeatedly breaking out of military
    school and meeting up with various eccentrics, all
    while working for his godfather, D.H. (Jeff Goldblum).
    How is the transfer?
    Picture quality is fairly sharp and detailed here
    with no visible grain to be seen anywhere. Colors
    are well represented and balanced with accurate
    flesh tones. Not much more can be said here other
    than this is a nice transfer.
    [​IMG]
    The 5.1 Dolby Digital mix supports this film well.
    The front channels provide robust, bass-heavy audio.
    You'll even hear your subwoofer accent the beats of
    the film's rock soundtrack. The rears are sparingly
    used to provide the ambient noises of New York City
    and various weather elements. Unfortunately, the
    rears don't add much support to the film's soundtrack
    adding more reverb than anything else.
    Special Features
    [​IMG][​IMG]
    A full-length commentary with Kieran Culkin
    and Director Burr Steers isn't overly technical,
    playing more like two buddies casually sitting in
    front of the TV, laughing along at the film and
    their fellow cast members. Steers points out many
    of the tricks he used (such as hat wearing) to
    preserve the film's time line continuity, as well
    as various changes he had to make in dialogue.
    The director chose to shoot this film in Super
    35mm, and talks about how artists like Fiorucci
    inspired many of his most intimate shots. Though
    I skimmed through most of this commentary, what I
    heard was more playful banter than anything overly
    interesting, though throughout Steers does manage
    to help the viewer better understand his characters.
    [​IMG]
    In Search Of Igby begins with the entire
    cast of the film giving us short quips about the
    storyline as we are introduced to first-time director
    Burr Steers who talks about what it was like to write
    and structure a film like this. One would have thought
    that it would be difficult making a low-budget film
    ith a relatively well-known cast, but Producer Mark
    Weber explains that it was the love of doing a
    project like this that brought everyone together and
    made this an effortless film to make. In fact, the
    entire cast seems not only to be highly motivated
    by the film's script, but the fact that actors like
    Sarandon and Goldblum are involved.
    (length: approx. 16 minutes)
    There are of 10 minutes of deleted scenes
    presented here, most of which are flashbacks that
    further look at the relationship brothers between
    Igby and Ollie and their father (Bill Pullman).
    Most interesting to see is a hospital scene where
    a particular line that Sarandon utters to a doctor
    was removed purely on speculation that the MPAA
    would be disgruntled over it. Though all the footage
    shown here further expands upon these characters,
    it became difficult to watch for it truly shows
    what bastards all of these people are. You can
    watch these deleted scenes with or without the
    optional commentary by director Burr Steers.
    The film's orignial theatrical trailer is
    included here as well as a Photo gallery
    with approximately 45 behind-the-scenes stills that
    you can browse through using your DVD remote. MGM
    has also included trailers for their Thelma &
    Louise
    and The Usual Suspects SE DVDs.
    Final Thoughts
    [​IMG]
    Somehow I feel like I missed the point of this
    film. Igby Goes Down manages to assemble
    a fine cast who give remarkably strong performances.
    Problem is, the movie is filled with such utterly
    irritating characters that it quickly wears out its
    welcome and you find yourself no longer caring about
    any of it. Whether you like this coming-of-age
    film or not will most likely depend on your mood
    at the moment. While I can't help but think some
    of you will view this film as a masterpiece in the
    veign of Catcher In The Rye, it's certainly
    not a film I can readily recommend.
    Release Date: February 4, 2003
    All screen captures have been further compressed.
    They are for illustrative purposes only and do not
    represent actual picture quality
     
  2. Brajesh Upadhyay

    Brajesh Upadhyay Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the review. This film was critically lauded last year & I plan to check it out. Looks like I'll rent though.
     
  3. ben hunt

    ben hunt Well-Known Member

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    I thought this movie was great. Good review. I didn't know it was out on DVD so soon. I'll be picking it up.
     
  4. Joe_C

    Joe_C Well-Known Member

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    My roommate and I saw it together the other day and we both thought it was a extremely well-written, well-acted film with very interesting characters who had to deal with getting shit on over and over again.

    The film club on our campus (UCLA) showed it to about 200 of us and nearly everyone came out just raving about it. It was successful enough to warrant three more showings to about the same number of people each time.

    I was a little surprised to see that it's already on DVD. Oh well, another release to pick up!
     
  5. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Well-Known Member

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    (In all honesty and sincerity)
    Am I the only one who is truly at a loss for words on this? I got through watching about an hours worth of this DVD and turned it off. I've NEVER done this before with ANY of the hundreds of DVD's I've watched (and I sat through all of "Master of Disguise" last night).
    I wish there was one sort of redeeming quality to latch onto, but every corner the movie turned just irritated me more and more!!!!! I don't think I can manage to finish watching this movie. I am absolutely amazed at how awful I thought this was. REALLY! I am completely baffled as to how much I couldn't stand this movie. I may not like every movie I buy, but at least I can appreciate them for what they are and move on, but I just can't seem to get by this one.....
    Did I mention I didn't like this movie? [​IMG]
     
  6. Holadem

    Holadem Well-Known Member

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    So... you want to tell us how you really feel Mark? [​IMG]
    --
    Holadem
     
  7. Patrick_L

    Patrick_L Well-Known Member

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    then why bother buying it.

    i thought the movie was great, btw.
     
  8. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Well-Known Member

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  9. Jesse Skeen

    Jesse Skeen Well-Known Member

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    So what about it didn't you like? I thought it was just OK, not great, but I'll watch it again.
     
  10. JayF

    JayF Well-Known Member

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    Mark-

    Maybe you should force yourself to finish it. I couldn't stand it at first either... the Caulkin character was such a little sh*t it was really turning me off. But unbelievably by the end I found I had been hooked and it actually evoked some emotion, which I thought was a great reflection on the screenplay to make you actually care for such an ***hole.
     
  11. Eric Walsh

    Eric Walsh Well-Known Member

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    The second viewing really sealed this for me as a great film. The first time I saw it I was very disappointed and annoyed because I thought I would like it but I didn't. Then I tried it again and ended up really appreciating it. Maybe check it out again knowing what to expect and you will see some value in it somewhere. I mean you already own it so why not?

    -Eric
     
  12. Jason Kleeberg

    Jason Kleeberg Active Member

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    I love this movie. It's definitely in my top twenty list.
     
  13. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Well-Known Member

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  14. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Well-Known Member

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    I would love to take a poll and find out the age group of people who loved the movie. I would tend to think that younger people (under 30) would like this more than the 30 and over group.

    I would think the under 30 would relate more to Culkins char. and agree with his actions whereas the over 30 group would just be truned off (as I was) with what he did.
     
  15. Michael Reuben

    Michael Reuben Well-Known Member

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  16. Jason Seaver

    Jason Seaver Well-Known Member

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  17. Michael Reuben

    Michael Reuben Well-Known Member

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  18. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Well-Known Member

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    i'm over 30 and i thought this movie was pretty good. if i saw it used i'd possibly pick it up.
    i actually liked how irritating culkin's character was. he's basically a wandering, uninspired, spoiled rich kid trying to figure out what to do with his life. he meets all these bizarre people (including goldblum - who is really the *true* a-hole of the picture) and just skates through it all.
    i thought phillipe did a great job showing ambivalence (sp?) towards the whole situation.
    i think one of my favorite scenes was when peet's character got all dressed up in that pink outfit - trying to be the pure and innocent person we all know she's not. goldblum takes one look at her and walks out of the restaurant...can't tell me we didn't all know it was over at that point.
    although i certainly don't know if this is how rich new yorkers behave ( [​IMG] ) it was certainly an interesting character study. i liked it more then the royal tenenbaums (sp?) - that's for sure.
     

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