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The Sessions (2012)

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A man in an iron lung who wishes to lose his virginity contacts a professional sex surrogate with the help of his therapist and priest.

Director:

Ben Lewin

Writers:

Ben Lewin (written for the screen by), Mark O'Brien (article)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 18 wins & 63 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
John Hawkes ... Mark
Helen Hunt ... Cheryl
William H. Macy ... Father Brendan
Moon Bloodgood ... Vera
Annika Marks ... Amanda
Adam Arkin ... Josh
Rhea Perlman ... Mikvah Lady
W. Earl Brown ... Rod
Robin Weigert ... Susan
Blake Lindsley ... Dr. Laura White
Ming Lo ... Clerk
Rusty Schwimmer ... Joan
Jennifer Kumiyama Jennifer Kumiyama ... Carmen
Tobias Forrest ... Greg
Jarrod Bailey ... Tony
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Storyline

At the age of 38, Mark O'Brien, a man who uses an iron lung, decides he no longer wishes to be a virgin. With the help of his therapist and his priest, he contacts Cheryl Cohen-Greene, a professional sex surrogate and a typical soccer mom with a house, a mortgage and a husband. Inspired by a true story, The Sessions, follows the fascinating relationship which evolves between Cheryl and Mark as she takes him on his journey to manhood. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

THE FESTIVAL HIT OF THE YEAR!


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong sexuality including graphic nudity and frank dialogue | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Fox [United States]

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

16 November 2012 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Surrogate See more »

Filming Locations:

San Francisco, California, USA

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$113,467, 21 October 2012

Gross USA:

$6,002,451

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$9,138,338
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby | Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The movie is based on the article "On Seeing a Sex Surrogate", by 'Mark O'Brien (III)', from the May 1990 issue of The Sun magazine. See more »

Goofs

Rhea Perlman's name is spelled Pearlman in the end credits. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Bill Hillman - Reporter: Mark O'Brien has been going to UC Berkley since 1978. That's O'Brien in the motorized gurney heading for class last week. He had polio when he was six years old. The disease left his body crippled, but his mind remained sharp and alert. And since he wanted to be a writer, Mark O'Brien entered Cal to major in English and learn his trade. He wrote this poem for us about school here and about graduation.
Mark O'Brien: Graduation. Today I hear the crowd's applause. Receive the congratulations from ...
See more »

Connections

Featured in Maltin on Movies: A Good Day to Die Hard (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Fine Wine Tasting for Two
Written by Brad Hatfield (as Bradley P. Hatfield)
Performed by Brad Hatfield Quintet
Courtesy of Heavy Hitters Music Group
See more »

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User Reviews

 
sex is the theme of life
9 November 2012 | by jsharmaSee all my reviews

The Sessions directed by Ben Lewin is based on the life of Mark O'Brien, a polio stricken man in an iron lung who was a journalist and a poet( played by John Hawkes: movie Winter's bone)originally from Boston who moved to Berkeley,CA. Mark was grateful that his parents did not send him to a nursing home but raised him at home so he could live long. At age of 38 ( 1988), Mark decided to lose his virginity and explore and enjoy sex. He was always supine and always either in an iron lung at home or on a gurney when outside. He finally decides to seek the help of a paid sex surrogate who is definitely different from a hooker. Cheryl(played by Helen Hunt)is a sex surrogate. Cheryl is intelligent, educated,married and has a nice body. Cheryl and Mark decide to go through six sessions of sex and self awareness. Cheryl makes Mark aware of his and her body. John Hawkes acted brilliantly . His facial expressions and glittering eyes are very enticing and evoke respect and sympathy. I particularly liked the way Mark describes his first session of intimacy: cleansed and victorious. Helen Hunt as Cheryl is excellent. All the nude scenes are sophisticated and stylishly done. William Macy as Father Brendan is excellent. Screenplay is excellent and conversations between Father Brendan and Mark are interesting. Oscar worthy for Direction,screenplay, best actor, best actress, best supporting actor roles.


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