DON JON (18)
Run time: 90mins
Director: Joseph Gordon- Levitt
Cast: Joseph Gordon- Levitt, Scarlett Johansson, Julianne Moore, Tony Danza, Glenne Headley and Brie Larson
Synopsis: Jon is a handsome, good old fashioned guy. His buddies call him Don Jon due to his ability to ‘pull’ a different woman every weekend. But even the finest fling doesn’t compare to the bliss he finds alone in front of the computer watching pornography. Barbara is a bright, beautiful, good old fashioned girl. Wrestling with good old fashioned expectations of the opposite sex, Jon and Barbara struggle against a media culture full of false fantasies to try and find true intimacy
This is the first feature length film as writer-director from likeable, talented Joseph Gordon- Levitt (known as an actor for Third Rock from the Sun, Inception, The Dark Night Rises and Looper) who also stars as Jon.
A kind of modern re-working of Don Giovanni , it poses serious questions – also raised recently in Beeban Kidron’s excellent documentary, InRealLife – about the effect of internet porn on young men and their potential to form relationships with real women.
Our protagonist is dedicated to: keeping his body in shape; his apartment; his car; his family; his religion; his boys; his girls and his internet porn addiction. He seems to find the perfect girl, Barbara (Scarlett Johansson) who suits his New Jersey, Italian parents – Mum, Angela (Glenne Headley) and Dad, Jon Sr (Tony Danza). However the young couple are both so self-absorbed, and Barbara so ambitious, that a happy ending seems unlikely. Jon’s sister, Monica realises this on the only occasion that she looks up from her smartphone. But Dad – who cannot have a family meal without a sports game playing on the huge TV – and Mum think she is perfect.
At an evening class that Barbara has made him enrol in to better himself, Jon meets Esther (Julianne Moore) who will become the catalyst that enables him to learn important life lessons.
A good ensemble piece with a strong script – which, be warned, does contain some sexually crude humour – this film announces the arrival of a fresh new directorial talent.
Images courtesy of Warner Bros