Maksim's Review of Don Jon
Far from the mainstream, Don Jon is a formidable and quite controversial directorial debut of Joseph Gordon-Levitt. Provocative, almost explicit and with huge laughs, this modern story is frank and sometimes disturbingly unorthodox love triangle between two young people and porn. Despite its slower and a bit too sentimental ending, this movie is a splendid autumn surprise.
Contrary to the expectation coming from the name Joseph-Gordon-Levitt, Don Jon is that sort of original and unorthodox story that not only captivates the attention of the audience, but also will be remembered with its unusual love triangle. Provocative and probably offending for conservative audiences, the directorial debut of Hewitt is about the young bar tender and charming seducer Jon (Levitt) who starts a romance with the beautiful Barbara (Scarlett Johansson). It occurs, though that this will not be a normal relationship as Jon is addicted to porn and his imagination of sex is totally corrupted by the porn he watches daily.
In a very stylish manner, Levitt lets Johansson and himself shine on the silver screen. His exaggerated accent may not have been the best choice for this movie, but the strangely incompatible chemistry between him and Scarlett Johansson is refreshing and perfectly suits the overall visual style. The provocative and almost sexually explicit presence of porn could hardly considered offending. On the contrary, the thought-provoking depiction of Jon's addiction is having almost an educational added value to younger audiences.
Don Jon falls short of becoming one of this year's probable Academy contenders, due to the dramatic and sweet sentimental final part of the movie. The loss of story-sharpness is compensated by a third excellent performance coming from Julian Moore. Her presence becomes stronger with every minute and provides the audiences with an unconventional solution to the search for "the right girl who could make the same sex as in the porn movies".
In conclusion, Don Jon is one of the directorial debuts that would be remembered. Thought-provoking and captivating it provides not only entertainment, but also enough food for the brains. With this debut, Joseph-Gordon Levitt attracts the attention as a versatile actor (most of us are already familiar with that) and as a promising young director. This movie definitely deserves to be seen!