Day thirty-eight: Don Jon (April, 16)

First I must begin saying how much I enjoyed Don Jon, Joseph Gordon-Levitt's directional debut. I've seen the trailer at the movie theater, but missed it at the time. However, I am very happy to have chosen it to be in this One Movie a Day's dare. It has been a couple of days since I saw it, but the film is still with me. 

(Alert: Next I'll refer to some facts in the movie, something that I try to avoid, but they don't actually spoil anything about the story.)

Jon has a relatively good life. As he says himself, he likes his family, his apartment, his body, his church, his friends... and his porn. He goes through life in a careful routine. He works, but it really doesn't matter, because we never got to find out what he does professionally. His weekends, though, we are able to see: he goes out with friends, finds a girl who fits his beauty standards (he only chooses those from 8 up), takes her home, has sex, wakes up, swears a lot on traffic, on his way to church, confesses, gets his penance, has lunch with his family, and finally goes to gym, where he preys his ten Holy Mary's while pumping iron. 

His life sounds so satisfactory for him, but it isn't. And while going through a relationship with one apparently perfect 10 graded girl (It is Scarlet Johanson after all), he becomes  more and more aware how his life is unfulfilled. They make a beautiful couple to look at, but are disastrous when alone. They are together by an agenda, on both sides, like many and many current relationships (I pass by them everyday). It is excruciating and sad. And such a waste.  

But, of course, to acknowledge the dissatisfaction in such a way of living is recognize that his life is not what he and his friends and his family think it is. It is also a way to go against his family's script (just one look at his father and him together at the dinner table when we can see the whole story) And like happens with the majority of the whole human race, it is not acceptable. It would look like an admission of failure (when we must be perfect, right?). When I talk like that, it seems so easy to get free from it, but it is really not. It is, actually, one of the biggest traps in life. 

So he keeps in a bad relationship in order not to admit that he actually wants more of his life, a thing that only porn can give him. Until the finds out the pot at the end of the rainbow. 

I don't like a buff Gordon-Levitt, but even the awareness of his physic is intentional. It is a part of the distressful and joyful journey that we go through with him. And despite being visible that it is a directional debut  (the editing is a clue to that), Gordon-Levitt is very fortunate on the way his picture a living that we see everyday - in us and in others. And how the discover of what is lacking - and admitting it - is a true life-saver. 

For me, a must see movie :)

Don Jon. Directed and written by Joseph Gordon-Levitt. With: Joseph
Gordon Levitti, Tony Danza, Scarlett Johansson, Julianne Moore. US,
2013, Dolby Digital, Color (DVD).

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