But as an intimacy and love develops between them, the stranglehold that porn still has over Jon looms large, although he's not the only one whose ideas of perfection need challenged. Managing to avoid the ego-centric trappings which can occur when a star makes that progression to the director's chair, Gordon-Levitt isn't afraid to let the loutish, less appealing traits of his character bubble to the surface. He's undoubtedly learned some tricks from his past collaborators too, as he manages to pull off some nice visual flourishes behind the camera (his 'bouncy porn' routine montage sequences would almost certainly have Darren Aronofsky nodding wildly in approval).
If Jon's overly-macho, gym bunny persona and the 'Noo Joisey' accents on display sometimes veer close to stereotype, Gordon-Levitt's relaxed performance and his fine supporting cast manage to keeps things largely grounded. In fact, the film's ace up its sleeve comes in the form of Julianne Moore, who really excels as a troubled mature college student, helping Jon realise and finally confront his addiction. While there's nothing hugely innovative in the material, Don Jon breezes along with a welcome humour and arch sexiness, refreshingly free from the kind of unrealistic platitudes inherent in the hopelessly idealistic films Johansson's Barbara adores.
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