Cinema Review: Don Jon | Under the Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
Tuesday, November 28th, 2023  

Don Jon

Studio: Relativity
Written and directed by Joseph Gordon-Levitt

Sep 27, 2013 Issue #47 - September/October 2013 - MGMT
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New Jersey bartender Jon Martello (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) has a routine. He goes to the gym, eats dinner with his family, and goes clubbing with his buddies on weekends to target women for one-night stands. In between, he makes time to watch a lot of Internet porn, which is a calculated process for him. On Sundays, he goes to church and confesses everything. His friends call him Don Jon because of his success rate at scoring with different women. But his conquests can’t relieve his addiction to porn. In fact, he prefers it to actual sex and explains the details of why in voiceover. He meets his match in Barbara Sugarman (Scarlett Johansson), a girl he wants desperately but who won’t give herself up so easily.

There’s little modesty in Gordon-Levitt’s first feature as a writer and director-as an actor, he seems to be aping De Niro, and there are early barrages of porn clips that could cause problems with the MPAA-but what’s surprising is how assured his film is visually and comically. Don Jon is a contradictory character, and it’s fun to watch him clumsily navigate his conflicts with intimacy. Julianne Moore, Brie Larson, and Tony Danza and Glenne Headly as Jon’s parents, all supply laughs in supporting roles.

Author rating: 7/10

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Average reader rating: 9,305/10


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