Igby Goes Down
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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