Joseph Gordon-Levitt made his debut as a writer and director with late September’s release of highly anticipated “Don Jon.”
At first glance, it’s easy to assume the movie is an empty comedy revolving around sex and masculinity.
In reality, the movie is a marvelous and intelligent portrayal of society’s corrupted expectations of relationships caused by America’s oversexualized media culture.
The storyline involves Jon (Gordon- Levitt), an attractive bachelor in New York who values the single life and the freedom that comes along with it.
His life revolves around his family, his friends, his women and his love for pornography.
He enjoys the release he gets from porn so much that it holds him back from being able to find satisfaction through real life intimacy with women.
When he meets Barbara (Scarlett Johansson), a sexy and confident bachelorette who plays hard to get, Jon bites off a little more than he can chew.
Barbara appears to be exactly what he likes; curvaceous and playful. And his parents like her, too.
But when Jon realizes that even his seemingly perfect relationship with Barbara still can’t bring him the same satisfaction porn does — and he just can’t bring himself to give it up despite Barbara’s pleas — he is thrown into a bind of conviction and conflict.
On the flip side, Barbara’s blinded fascination with Hollywood romance movies creates a false fantasy in her real life situations as much as Jon’s fascination with porn creates a false fantasy in his.
While the plot may be simple, it portrays the deepest and most confusing problems with youth today.
In such a sexually driven society, men and women alike battle with the distinction between fantasy and reality.
The movie addresses these struggles in a lighthearted, well-written, smart, funny comedy.
It earns its R rating with a heavy amount of nudity and vulgarity.
For Gordon-Levitt’s first time writing, directing and starring in a movie altogether — “Don Jon” is impressive and entertaining.
I give “Don Jon” two big thumbs up.