So I knew going in that I would like this movie because Joseph Gordon-Levitt always does an awesome job, no matter what movie he’s in. I was curious to see what kind of film he could put out from start to finish and since he wrote, directed, and starred in Don Jon, this certainly fit the bill.
On its face, Don Jon is a romantic comedy with a porn ‘problem.’ As in, the main character Jon, is addicted to porn. His reasons are all perfectly valid to his mind and he declares himself not an addict because he can stop anytime he wants. Enter Scarlett Johansson as his perfect woman and we figure hey, he’s gonna be just fine now. Only… the movie doesn’t go where any romantic comedy ever goes. Like what happens if your perfect mate isn’t quite so perfect. And do we have to change fundamentally who we are to conform to our perfect mate’s expectations – and family, and society for that matter.
I won’t go into details so as not to spoil anything, but Don Jon is so good I was honestly a little bereft when it ended. Everyone did a fantastic job and the chemistry all around was just perfect. This is a family that’s comfortable with themselves and, if not forgiving of each other’s quirks, then knowing and accepting despite the aggravation. No one’s afraid to call bullshit.
One caveat: this is NOT a first date movie. Really? I wouldn’t go see this with anyone you don’t know really well because the porn imagery is pretty blunt (though not much more explicit than, say, the crazy-sexist commercials on tv) and so is the language. Which is both in-character and – personally speaking – refreshing. If you’re looking for something to watch that’s outside the box and unusually fulfilling, then Don Jon’s a great choice. Go see it!
I’m really looking forward to seeing what Joe (can I call you that? :o)) comes out with next.