Actors: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Scarlett Johansson, Julianne Moore
Director: Joseph Gordon-Levitt
Format: AC-3, Color, DTS Surround Sound, Dubbed, Subtitled, Widescreen
Subtitles: English, Spanish
Number of discs: 1
Rated: R (Restricted)
Studio: 20th Century Fox
Release Date: December 31, 2013
Run Time: 91 minutes
The ideas about romance buried within the screenplay of Don Jon are far from original, to the point that each of the film’s twists can be seen far in advance, but the presentation of these ideas come through unique characters and original plot points. At the center of the film is a simple argument that Hollywood romantic comedies are just as unhealthy for the female mind as pornography is for the male mind, essentially setting both up for disappointment when life does not live up to their fantasy for cinematic perfection.
Jon Martello (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) would be a likely candidate for a new “Jersey Shore” cast member, spending every day working out and cleaning so that he can spend every night trying to get laid in clubs. The one thing we don’t see Jon do much of is work, though his hours as a bartender would likely be during the very time we see him constantly gallivanting. When Jon meets Barbara Sugarman (Scarlett Johansson) he wants to sleep with her because she is the most beautiful girl he’s ever met, but she is high maintenance and leads Jon into a relationship by dangling sex like a carrot. The problem comes when Jon finally gets what he wants and is still left unsatisfied. Jon’s reliance on pornography to fulfill sexual desires is in complete contradiction to the
image of romance in Barbara’s fantasy, causing a rift in their relationship.
This film relies heavily on the New Jersey stereotypes for humor and some of the ideas are somewhat transparent in the screenplay, but Don Jon is still a solid filmmaking debut for Gordon-Levitt. The Blu-ray release includes a making-of featurette, as well as four additional featurettes that are mostly fluff, and the HitRECord shorts. The Blu-ray combo pack also comes with a DVD and digital copy.
Entertainment Value: 8/10
Quality of Filmmaking: 8/10
Historical Significance: 5/10
Disc Features: 6/10