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I’ve read that Burr Steers, the writer/director of Igby Goes Down, originally intended to write the story as a novel. It shows, but in a good way, like in the way one can tell Talk Radio or 12 Angry Men is based on a play. The addition of music, especially the use of “Bohemian Like You” by the Dandy Warhols, is touching and poignant. Kieran Culkin gives his all in his performance, and Ryan Phillippe surprised me again (after I saw Breach) in another stand-out role: what a talented man he is. It’s obvious Steers cares for his characters as we see how they live and breathe on the screen. Igby Goes Down is delicate, bittersweet, and a damn fine movie.

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