Hammerman Ikon

Hammerman Ikon Film Guide

Don Jon
Director: Joseph Gordon-Levitt
Cast: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Scarlett Johansson, Julianne Moore, Rob Brown, Glenne Headly, Brie Larson, Tony Danza

In his writing and directing debut, Joseph Gordon-Levitt plays Jon, a New Jersey lothario who regularly sleeps with beautiful women but would really just prefer to masturbate to Internet porn. This drama comedy doesn't get to a great start. The dopey macho protagonist, his grating narration, and the repetitive visual ticks have an alienating effect. The events do, however, improve when Jon tries to kick his secret habit for the gorgeous but controlling Barbara (Scarlet Johansson). The script makes some poignant observations about the sexual objectification of men and women, but the funny and clever parts cannot paper over the fact that Jon begins and ends the story as a complete personality vacuum. There is nothing to him and his relationships to women, even the meaningful ones are pure carnality with no substance. This also doesn't speak well for the female characters (the superficial Barbara and the sympathetic fellow student Esther), both of whom are attracted to Jon.