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Don Jon [Celluloid Hero]

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Don Jon  (2013)

Back in 2013, “Jersey Shore” had just wrapped the sixth and final season, and we were craving a replacement for the Snooki-shaped void in our lives. Where could we go for over-the-top accents, greasy hair, mouth-open gum-chewing, and abs? Here comes Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s writing and directorial debut, “Don Jon” to save us.

It’s nothing new to point out that those of us who are really from New Jersey know that “Jersey Shore” was a work of pure fiction, but I understand that to outsiders, that’s who we really are. I’m not entirely sure how people outside of our area viewed a non-reality show version of this lifestyle – was it supposed to be a fun comedy, or a mocking satire? I’m not sure either.

The worst part is, I actually liked the plot. Jon (played by JGL) is a good-looking guy that can pull any girl in the club, but actually prefers internet porn. He finally meets a girl that he thinks is above all the other club trash, but still can’t kick the porn habit. She catches him, and makes him promise to give it up. He says he will, but obviously doesn’t, leading to the end of the relationship. During this, Jon is busted checking out porn on his phone by an older woman who is much more accepting of his preferences, and opens his eyes to a new style of intimacy.

Right there, that plot is solid. If this had been played straight, with normal character and not cartoony stereotypes, I might have loved this movie. Instead, JGL does his best/worst impression of The Situation, ScarJo is unattractive to me for the first time ever, Tony Danza curses a lot, and Julianne Moore won’t mind her own damn business. They’re all terrible people and I don’t want to see or hear them ever again.

 

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[Celluloid Hero] gives “Don Jon” a 2 out of 10.

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