Don Jon, which hit theaters on Sept. 27, may be the most vulgar film of the year, but it's hard not to join in with the laughter it inspires. Written and directed by Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Don Jon is the story of Jon Martello Jr., a self-absorbed, porn-obsessed character played by Gordon-Levitt himself. The movie follows Martello as he deals with the repercussions of his morphed sexual expectations resulting from his addiction to porn.
First off, if you can't make it through the first five minutes of the film, it isn't your movie. Gordon-Levitt starts his sexual venture boldly with a racy introduction into the life of Martello, which includes his passion for family, church and porn. Around 60 percent of this introductory sequence consists of spliced clips from actual pornography − all rated R. If this makes you uncomfortable, don't watch it.
It may not be the visuals of Gordon-Levitt's film as much as it is the frequent and graphic audible depictions of sexual imagery that may set a low-key audience over the edge. Don Jon is a confident film that doesn't leave room for anything to be served lightly.
If this sounds tolerable, you're bound to get a kick out of everything.
Gordon-Levitt sports an interesting New Jersey “guido” accent alongside his superb co-star Scarlett Johansson, who plays his romantic interest, Barbara Sugarman. Sparks fly between them.
If that's not evidence enough of a star-studded cast, then perhaps Julianne Moore, Tony Danza and Glenne Headly are the cherries on top, not to mention the cameo appearances by Anne Hathaway and Channing Tatum.
The story is neat, organized and absurd − the perfect combination for a Sundance Film Festival selection. In fact, Entertainment Weekly Managing Editor Jess Cagle called the film “one of the best movies I saw at [Sundance].”
Although the ending may serve to disappoint some, it illustrates and concludes the key message of the film in a neat package that leaves few holes poked for breathing room, not that you'd need it.
Don Jon serves as Gordon-Levitt's feature film directorial debut, building on his already promising career as an actor. His directing style is clearly noticeable, intriguing and engaging throughout the film. Although there are a few bumps in his style, Gordon-Levitt is definitely a talent to watch in the future.