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Movie Review: ‘Don Jon’

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Tony Danza, Glenne Headly, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Brie Larson

Tony Danza, Glenne Headly, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Brie Larson

Don Jon, stars Joseph Gordon-Levitt (Inception, The Dark Knight Rises), Scarlett Johansson (The Avengers), Julianne Moore (Game Change), Glenne Headly (Monk), Brie Larson (The Spectacular Now) and Tony Danza (Family Law, Who’s The Boss?).  The film was also written and directed by Gordon-Levitt.

Jon Martello (Gordon-Levitt) is the man.  He’s handsome, has a great body, a cool car and a nice apartment.  He loves his family, goes to church every Sunday and hangs out with his boys every weekend.  When he hits the club, Jon has no problem getting action from the bevy of beautiful ladies that frequent his hangout spot.  He’s so good at getting the ladies, his friends call him Don Jon.  But there’s one thing that Jon loves doing more anything:  watching porn.  Jon thinks there’s nothing like it, not even sex with a real woman.  Nothing compares to porn.  Except maybe the hotness that is Barbara Sugarman (Johansson), who knocks Jon’s socks off when he sees her at the club one night.  She’s gorgeous, feisty and definitely not an easy lay.  This woman is special, the kind of special that makes a man think about his life and his choices.  Barbara also has her own addiction, which is watching sappy romance movies (think Dear John or The Notebook or anything written by Nicholas Sparks).  But Jon doesn’t care, he’ll do what he can for his girl, even give up porn.  Or will he?

Scarlet Johansson

Scarlett Johansson

Don Jon is the directorial debut of Gordon-Levitt, who proved he is just as good behind the camera as he is in front of it.  As Jon Martello a.k.a Don Jon, Gordon-Levitt easily turns into the slick, muscle-bound wiseguy who easily gets the girl.  Gordon-Levitt, who I’ve watched since his days as teenage alien Tommy Solomon on 3rd Rock from the Sun, has become one of the most interesting actors in Hollywood.  He never seems to play the same character twice and has moved from television to the big screen seemingly with ease.  Gordon-Levitt’s chemistry with Johansson, who truly shines as the “dime” from Jersey, was pretty hot but also sweet at times.  Brie Larson as Jon’s phone-obsessed sister Monica was hysterical without saying much of anything.  Julianne Moore as Jon’s fellow night school student Esther, was weird and funny and sad all at once, which is not an easy thing to do.  But the biggest surprise was Tony Danza as Jon Senior.  Danza, who looks great playing the father of two grown children, was downright hilarious.  He was especially funny when Jon brings Barbara home to meet the family.  Other notables in the film were Rob Brown and Jeremy Luke as Jon’s best friends Bobby and Danny, who brought new meaning to the term “wing men.”

Julianne Moore and Joseph Gordon-Levitt

Julianne Moore and Joseph Gordon-Levitt

I can guarantee that this film will make people uncomfortable because of its subject matter, but in my opinion, that’s a good thing.  Don Jon doesn’t preach to the audience about sex and relationships.  Instead, it sheds light on what many struggle with in this age of easy access.  Porn is readily available more than ever and can turn an innocent viewing into a daily obsession.  Gordon-Levitt did a great job of keeping the film light but not so much that it glossed over the more serious moments.  Here’s hoping we see more films directed by this very talented actor.

Don Jon is in theaters now.

Photos courtesy of Relativity Media

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About Writergirl2009

Writergirl2009 is a Paralegal by day, but wishes to release herself from the tedium of her daily life to write full-time. She loves writing about films, televisions shows, books, music or people on the New York subway, where she currently lives (in New York, not on the subway).
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