9 items from 2013
The Adg Conference session 'The Entrepreneurial Director' should have been titled 'The Desperate Director,' according to Ben Lewin, who rounded out the first day of Directing in the Digital Age yesterday. Speaking candidly to a room full of peers, Lewin spoke of how it was hitting (almost) rock-bottom in his field that opened the doors which would lead to his successful and critically acclaimed film The Sessions. Speaking of how ABC TV in Australia wouldn't return his calls, Lewin said "It was, at the time,the hardest pill to swallow... In retrospect, I am grateful for the rejection. It gave me the desperation I needed to move forward. Thus, the theme of this talk. Except for 'entrepreneurial', read 'desperate.' And for the other part of the formula - add in sheer, dumb, luck." Lewin is being modest here. Sheer dumb luck didn't grant the film a Golden Globe or Oscar nod, »
- Emily Blatchford
★★★☆☆ The prospect of a trio of twentysomething virgins embarking on a sexual odyssey of a road-trip is not likely to seem unfamiliar to most cinema audiences. In Geoffrey Enthoven's Belgian comedy Come As You Are (Hasta la Vista, 2011) this potentially tired convention is given a cute twist in that each of the young men is severely disabled. As such, their voyage is more akin to that of Mark O'Brien in The Sessions (2012) than the cruder hijinks of the gross-out American Pie franchise. Avoiding over-sentimentality it proves a humorous, good natured affair which perhaps proves a little too generic but is an enjoyable ride nonetheless.
Philip (Robrecht Vanden Thoren) is a paraplegic, Lars (Gilles de Schrijver) has a debilitating terminal cancer and Jozef (Tom Audenaert) is almost completely blind. Philip and Lars are both confined to wheelchairs and Jozef uses a magnifier to see. One day, on the suggestion of a never-seen friend called Curt, »
- CineVue UK
Hunt won 'Best Supporting Female', while Hawkes won 'Best Male Lead' for their roles in the 2012 drama.
Due to his physical conditions, Mark has never had sex, so he hires a sex surrogate to lose his virginity.
Both Hunt and Hawkes were nominated at the Golden Globe Awards and Screen Actor Guild Awards. Hunt is also nominated for an Academy Award.
The 85th Academy Awards air on Sunday (February 24) at 7pm Et on ABC.
Watch a trailer for The Sessions below: »
Iw Talks to the Oscar 13' Nominees' is a daily series running through to this year's Oscar ceremony (February 24) that features new or previously published interviews with some of this year's nominees. Today, we're re-running an interview Best Supporting Actress nominee Helen Hunt ("The Sessions"). At Sundance this January, Academy Award-winner Helen Hunt courted the most attention she's received in over a decade for her brave and baring turn as a sex surrogate in "The Sessions" (then titled "The Surrogate"). The film, inspired by a true story, centers on Mark O'Brien (John Hawkes), a Berkeley author confined to an iron lung due to childhood polio. At 38, O'Brien, who can't move any of his limbs but is not impotent, decides he wants to finally lose his virginity. Enter Hunt as Cheryl Cohen Green, a sex surrogate, who O'Brien calls on to aid him in the process. Written and directed by Ben Lewin, »
- Nigel M Smith
Based on the poignantly optimistic autobiographical writings of California -based journalist and poet Mark O'Brien, The Sessions tells the story of a man confined to an iron lung who is determined, at age 38, to lose his virginity. With the help of his therapists and the guidance of a priest, he sets out to make his dream a reality.
We recently talked with director Ben Lewin, just as The Sessions, which has garnered Helen Hunt an Academy Award nomination, makes its way to Blu-ray and DVD. Check out our conversation, then be sure to check out the movie, which is available today!
Before Mark O'Brien, whom John Hawkes plays in the movie, passed away, he started courting a young woman named Susan Fernbach. You actually collaborated with her quite a bit on the screenplay, correct?
Ben Lewin: Yes. That »
Thanks to Fox Home Entertainment, we are awarding two of you a copy of The Sessions on Blu-ray in this contest. For a chance to win one, please fill out and submit the short entry form below. The odds of winning can be increased each or every day you stop back to enter again. The more entries, the better the odds. You must be a resident of the U.S. or Canada to enter.
Paralyzed and confined to an iron lung since childhood, poet-journalist Mark O'Brien (John Hawkes) has overcome adversity time and time again. But now, at age 38, he faces his toughest challenge yet: losing his virginity. With the help of a beautiful therapist (Helen Hunt), a sympathetic »
The journey for "The Sessions" is nearly over, but it has been one helluva ride. Premiering in January 2012 at the Sundance Film Festival, the film by writer/director Ben Lewin left Park City with considerable buzz, which Fox Searchlight continued to build over the course of the year, culminating in Golden Globe and Indie Spirit nominations for stars John Hawkes and Helen Hunt, and an Oscar nod for Hunt as well. The film tells the remarkable true story of Mark O'Brien, a man afflicted by polio and confined to an iron lung who endeavors to lose his virginity via the help of a sex surrogate. It's a fascinating and often surprisingly funny true story, but the original draft of the tale included some more fantastical elements. In this exclusive deleted scene from the movie, we see Mark dreaming that he's in a hospital where the disabled patients are ordered to work with their sex surrogates, »
- Kevin Jagernauth
Robot and Frank and The Man With the Iron Fists are also available on DVD this week. Skyfall Daniel Craig reprises his role as Agent 007 in the latest stylish Bond film. Director Sam Mendes blends together classic Bond elements and characters for a fresh take on the beloved franchise. This time, Bond finds himself coming out of early retirement to help M (Judi Dench) after she accidentally leaks a list of secret agents. He's led to creepy, campy villain Silva (Javier Bardem), who provides an evil agenda and some comic relief. The DVD comes with a four-part making-of documentary. 92% The Perks of Being a Wallflower Author Stephen Chbosky takes his beloved coming-of-age story to the big screen, as both writer and director of the film. Logan Lerman stars as Charlie, the shy teen who finds his niche with a like-minded group of misfits and soon develops a crush on one of the ringleaders, »
- Maggie Pehanick
Also new this week is the coming-of-age drama "The Perks of Being a Wallflower" with Emma Watson, RZA trying to do Quentin Tarantino proud in "The Man with the Iron Fists" and the sexually frank drama "The Sessions" starring Helen Hunt.
Box Office: $303 million
Rotten Tomatoes: 92% Fresh
Storyline: Daniel Craig returns as James Bond in this 23rd installment of the longest-running film franchise in history. This time Bond's loyalty to M (Judi Dench) is tested when a mysterious man from her past, Silva (Javier Bardem), threatens to destroy her. With security compromised, M is forced to relocate MI6 as her position is challenged by the new chairman of the intelligence and security committee (Ralph Fiennes). M »
- Robert DeSalvo
9 items from 2013
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