Joseph Gordon-Levitt Plays Porn Obsessed ‘Jersey Shore’ Stereotype in ‘Don Jon’

by Donald Hanson • September 27, 2013 • EntertainmentComments (0)2281

Photo Credit : screencrush.com

Photo Credit : screencrush.com

Joseph Gordon Levitt has one of the best resumes in the business. He is one of my favorite actors and has made more great movies by 32 than most actors have made in their entire careers. Now, he is starring in a movie that he has written and directed as well, ‘Don Jon’.

The movie Don Jon is about a guy from New Jersey whose priorities in life are family, friends, church… and porn. The conflict of the film appears to be that his obsession with porn generates unrealistic expectations of what a real life relationship should be like. Although I don’t know how that could be a problem considering Scarlett Johannson stars as his girlfriend in the film.

One look at the trailer shows that his character seems to be based on Mike Sorrentino from MTV’s ‘Jersey Shore’. The attitude, the haircut, the obsession with porn as well as working out, the wardrobe etc. The ironic part about that is that Mike is not from New Jersey at all, he’s from Staten Island.

Do we need another movie that makes New Jersey residents out to be like the cast of ‘Jersey Shore’? Los Angeles native Joseph Gordon-Levitt wrote and directed the movie and I guess I would feel a little more comfortable if at least the writer was from here or grew up here if it portrays negative Jersey stereotypes. We see ‘Don Jon’ types of people in nightclubs all over the country and the world. I don’t know why this movie had to associate the behavior with New Jersey unless they see that as a box office draw.

I’m not the kind of person that gets offended by these sorts of things. When the ‘Sopranos’ came out there were Italians who were up in arms about the Italian mob stereotype but it didn’t bother me because the subject matter was used for a well made show. Nothing should be off limits but you’re walking a fine line when you make a movie about New Jersey characters and situations and you aren’t from here. Ben and Casey Affleck for instance have made films set in Boston that in some cases involved shady characters and situations but that’s okay because they were raised there. They are trying to give an accurate portrayal of the place where they grew up.

Based on Joseph Gordon Levitts track record, I expect this to be a really good movie. I just hope that it doesn’t contribute further to negative perceptions about New Jersey that aren’t completely accurate.

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