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Igby Goes Down (2002)

Insanity is relative

Directed by:

Burr Steers

Rating: 3/10

Running Time: 97 minutes

UK Certificate: 15

Country: United States

Igby Slocumb (Kieran Culkin) is a rebellious youngster from a dysfunctional family. One day he decides to run away from the military school he's been placed in, to try for a new life away from the bad influences of his parents and the constant comparisons with his intelligent and successful brother (Ryan Phillipe).

Mimi, his narcissistic mother (the ever and always excellent Susan Sarandon), cares only about her damaged reputation, and schizophrenic father Bill has enough on his plate with his illness. Igby runs to New York to the flat rented by his godfather (Jeff Goldblum) for his mistress (Amanda Peet). Here he meets Sookie Soberstein (Claire Danes) and falls in love. Then his brother turns up to fetch him home, and he ends up fighting for Sookie's attention.

The mother is terminally ill – the boys assist her to die, freeing Igby from all ties and allowing him to leave in search of a new life. This film is an examination of the effects your childhood has on the adult you – Igby is haunted by images of his father's mental condition, which will stay with him for life.

The film is full of disturbing ideas and sequences, not least the euthanasia scenes. There is a failed and tasteless attempt to extract humour from this section, one of many such failures. The only redeeming feature here is Susan Sarandon, but even she cannot rescue this flop.

It's Got: Half-hearted attempts at humour.

It Needs: To be more original- its too much like The Royal Tenenbaums in both style and content!

Alternatives:

The Royal Tenenbaums, This Boys Life

Summary

A film with not much to it.

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