Don Jon 2013

Critics score:
80 / 100

Reviews provided by RottenTomatoes

Christy Lemire, Joseph Gordon-Levitt turns the gym-tan-laundry routine into an art form with Don Jon, his vibrant and viciously profane directorial debut. Read more

Mary F. Pols, TIME Magazine: At least 80% of it is snappy, droll fluff, while the other 20% is what you get when you persuade Julianne Moore to be in your movie: in a word, better. Read more

Manohla Dargis, New York Times: [A] deceptively sincere movie about masculinity and its discontents that Mr. Gordon-Levitt, making a fine feature directing debut, shapes into a story about a young man's moral education. Read more

David Edelstein, New York Magazine/Vulture: The movie is a broad ethnic comedy, but there's nothing broad about the wicked-smart way it's executed. Even long-played-out stereotypes take on new life. Read more

Lou Lumenick, New York Post: One of the most adventurous actors of his generation, Gordon-Levitt has a good sense of just how graphically he can depict Jon's addiction and maintain the sympathy of both men and women. Read more

Rex Reed, New York Observer: [Gordon-Levitt] can act, and there's a possibility he can also direct, but there's no evidence in Don Jon that he can do both at the same time. Read more

Joe Morgenstern, Wall Street Journal: An overheated disquisition on the pleasures and limitations of masturbation. Read more

Moira MacDonald, Seattle Times: By the time Jon learns that "you have to lose yourself in another person" (a nice turn of phrase), it's too late for us to lose ourselves in the movie. "Don Jon" is already gone. Read more

Peter Debruge, Variety: The self-assured helmer shows genuine affection for his characters, balancing their openly satiric qualities with a disarmingly sincere human center. Read more

A.A. Dowd, AV Club: On page and screen, Gordon-Levitt mostly fails to transform his bulky title protagonist into a multi-dimensional figure. He belongs in the final 15 minutes of an SNL episode, not at the center of a full-sized comedy. Read more

Bill Goodykoontz, Arizona Republic: A sharp turn on the romantic comedy, a movie about flawed people doing flawed things, often in funny fashion. Read more

Jake Coyle, Associated Press: ''Don Jon'' is a lark, but an enjoyable one with a full-hearted finale, and it further reveals the considerable talents of Gordon-Levitt. Read more

Ty Burr, Boston Globe: R-rating aside, it should be required viewing for every 15-year-old boy on the planet. Read more

Andrea Gronvall, Chicago Reader: Versatile actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt turns to writing and directing with this smart, sexy, sweet, and hilarious comedy about the difficulties of forging and sustaining relationships. Read more

Michael Phillips, Chicago Tribune: It's a dark comedy about matters of the heart, and how far some people go to take their minds off such matters. Read more

Peter Rainer, Christian Science Monitor: The movie becomes increasingly soft-edged and sappy. Read more

Adam Graham, Detroit News: Gordon-Levitt's characters feel real and "Don Jon" is a convincing, authentic, funny, modern romance. Read more

Cary Darling, Fort Worth Star-Telegram/ Gordon-Levitt enlivens Don Jon with such a sense of swagger, as a director, writer and actor, that the film feels fresh. Read more

Owen Gleiberman, Entertainment Weekly: Gordon-Levitt proves a natural filmmaker, nimbly staging Jon's highly amusing Catholic confessions, along with porn montages that mimic the dopamine-charged editing of Requiem for a Dream. Read more

William Goss, Often light on its feet, bolstered by the reliable charms and writing chops of its leading man. Read more

Todd McCarthy, Hollywood Reporter: Crude, repetitive and rigorously single-minded, the popular actor's writing and directing debut lays it all on a bit thick, as the few points the film has to make are underscored time and time again. Read more

Betsy Sharkey, Los Angeles Times: Who would have thought one of the most amusing and oddly insightful romantic comedies would be built around the power and the potent pull of porn? Read more

Randy Myers, San Jose Mercury News: "Don Jon" is hardly as slick as its main character fancies himself, and that's OK. After all, as Gordon-Levitt's movie takes great pains to illustrate, what we constitute as perfection often proves to be a deceptive illusion. Read more

Rene Rodriguez, Miami Herald: The movie has a keen understanding of how easily we can hurt other people by not considering them. Read more

Rafer Guzman, Newsday: Rarely has a film offered such raw and honest talk -- with visuals, too -- about male sexuality. Read more

David Denby, New Yorker: The movie takes a roundhouse punch at male shallowness, but Jon, in and out of his clothes, is not an interesting enough man to be emblematic of anything. Read more

Stephen Whitty, Newark Star-Ledger: Really, "Don Jon" could have - should have - gone on another 20 minutes. Then again, when was the last time you felt that about a romantic comedy? Or any movie? Read more

Bob Mondello, NPR: Gordon-Levitt keeps things riotous for the film's first hour, and if he eases into an ending that's a little Hollywood-standard, after having so much fun tweaking form and content, I'm guessing audiences will cut him some slack. Read more

Elizabeth Weitzman, New York Daily News: Writer-director-star Joseph Gordon-Levitt is so savvy about the workings of our small minds that he knows just how to reel us in (sex) before schooling us on the important things in life (love). Read more

Michael Sragow, Orange County Register: Joseph Gordon-Levitt's debut as a writer-director-actor resembles a porn addict's Groundhog Day, and not in a good way. Read more

Steven Rea, Philadelphia Inquirer: Not exactly an original idea. But Gordon-Levitt goes at it with gusto, and style. Give the guy some props. Read more

James Berardinelli, ReelViews: Don Jon is visually interesting without being overbearing. The script finds a witty way to confront serious issues. And Levitt-Gordon takes on the personality of a guy straight out of Jersey Shore. Read more

Richard Roeper, Richard Offbeat, frank and often surprising gem. Read more

Peter Travers, Rolling Stone: Don Jon [is] a bruisingly funny, bracingly smart comic dare that marks a stellar feature directing and writing debut for Joseph Gordon-Levitt, who plays Jon with humor, heat and sneaky heart. Read more

Andrew O'Hehir, This is a sweet, lively and funny movie rather than a fully realized one, but it makes clear that Gordon-Levitt has a natural feeling for cinema and should do more of it. Read more

Mick LaSalle, San Francisco Chronicle: "Don Jon" deserves praise for wearing its message lightly and yet for daring to present such a lecture in today's Internet-drenched environment. Read more

Colin Covert, Minneapolis Star Tribune: Joseph Gordon-Levitt's writing/directing/starring debut is like its diamond-in-the-rough title character. It shows a lot of unrealized potential, with enough charm to ease you past its shortcomings. Read more

Joe Williams, St. Louis Post-Dispatch: [Gordon-Levitt's] skills as an actor, and those of co-stars Scarlett Johansson and Julianne Moore, keep us watching, even as public-place modesty makes us want to look away. Read more

Linda Barnard, Toronto Star: Gordon-Levitt demonstrates he is a filmmaker with promise who blends a good ear for dialogue with fine pacing and an eye for making a good-looking picture. Read more

Alonso Duralde, TheWrap: For his first time behind the camera, Gordon-Levitt is already showing signs of great promise. It's a stereotype that actors-turned-filmmakers focus solely on performances, and while Don Jon is certainly a well-acted movie, it's also a good-looking one. Read more

Catherine Bray, Time Out: As a director, Gordon-Levitt demonstrates considerable technical flair through stylistic flourishes and coaxes great performances out of his co-stars. Read more

Keith Uhlich, Time Out: Merely ends up trading one beefcake delusion for another. Read more

Claudia Puig, USA Today: Writer/director/star Joseph Gordon-Levitt takes an intriguing subject - human attraction - and nimbly probes it with wit, insight and a disarming forthrightness. Read more

Stephanie Zacharek, Village Voice: Even when his story starts getting serious, Gordon-Levitt always keeps it funny, and his cast is in on the joke. Read more

Stephanie Merry, Washington Post: The film manages to be extremely efficient, conveying its points, making the audience laugh, getting viewers invested and even breaking our hearts in just 90 minutes. Read more