Don Jon and Depictions of Gender in Mass Media

[Originally written for a Media Critique class in October 2013].

Don Jon is an interesting movie in that it exhibits a male perspective so rarely seen in films. Joseph Gordon Levitt as the film’s writer, director, and star clearly wants to make a statement about his view of modern masculinity, going so far as to take on the larger-than-life persona of the ultra-masculine, Italian American title character Jon. The audience is told right up front that Jon cares about only a few things in life: his body, his car, his pad, his church, his family, his guys, his girls, and his porn. In fact, the audience is reinforced in this idea because we see Jon doing nothing else.

His day to day consists of working out, living materialistically, and vehemently pursuing women, whether real or virtual. The heart of this story therefore comes from Jon’s transformation into a man who can view women as equals, as opposed to sexual objects to conquer. While I believe this view has been expressed in other media, I found Don Jon to be unique in that Levitt’s honest male-perspective tackles our most modern depictions of gender. Continue reading Don Jon and Depictions of Gender in Mass Media