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September 27, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

A film about a man who is addicted to pornography hardly sounds like your usual rom-com fare, but critics almost unanimously conclude that Joseph Gordon-Levitt, the writer, director and star of Don Jon, pulls it off. “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?” asks Betsy Sharkey in the Los Angeles Times. Claudia Puig in USA Today notes that “The film cold have come off as a frankly smutty exercise.” Instead, she says, Gordon-Levvitt “has made a satirical, assured, darkly comedic and even poignant film that has a fair amount to say.” Manohla Dargis in the New York Times describes it as a “deceptively sincere movie about masculinity and its discontents.” And Elizabeth Weitzman in the New York Daily News writes that Gordon-Levitt “knows just how to reel us in (sex) before schooling us on the important things in life (love).” But a few, mostly male critics, aren’t impressed. Joe Morgenstern in the Wall Street Journal calls it “an overheated disquisition on the pleasures and limitations of masturbation.” And Rex Reed in the New York Observer simply dismisses it as “a benign little time-waster.”