Igby Goes Down
To describe Igby Slocum (Kieran Culkin) and his family as dysfunctional is woefully inadequate. The rebellious, profane, and sarcastic seventeen-year-old tries to avoid life in his East Coast “old money” family by flunking out of several prep schools, then escaping into the bohemian underworld of New York’s Manhattan districts. Igby discovers the perfect hideout, in his godfather’s, D. H. Baines (Jeff Goldblum), secret love-nest apartment. When not on the street buying or selling drugs, Igby shares the intimate space with either his godfather’s mistress, Rachel (Amanda Peet) or Sookie Sapperstein (Claire Danes), an older student met at a party. Despite the draw of star names in this supposed comedy, Igby will probably go down at the box office as well.
However, the list of objectionable content goes up. Hollywood’s favorite obscenity is frequently heard as Igby mistreats, and is mistreated, by the people around him. Igby is also seen in fairly graphic sexual encounters with both Rachel and Sookie. Rachel suffers a drug overdose, after baring her breasts and displaying needle marks on her arm. Perhaps seen as a merciful act, Igby helps his brother euthanatize their terminally ill mother (Susan Sarandon) with a plastic bag over her head. Despite this reviewer’s concentrated search, no redeeming elements were revealed in any scrap of this film, although some will laud the acting. As IGBY GOES DOWN, he takes the moviegoer with him.