While Beasts of the Southern Wild seemed to take Sundance by storm, there was one film that surprised me more than any other. Considering the last time director Ben Lewin was behind a camera was for a 2003 episode of Touched By the Angel, I went into The Sessions (then titled The Surrogate) with optimism regarding John Hawkes in the lead, but not much else.

While the direction is indeed standard, Lewin has created a heartwarming, often hilarious drama featuring not only an utterly fantastic performance from a Hawkes, playing a polio-stricken man looking to experience sex, but great supporting performances from but Helen Hunt and William H. Macy. We’ve got a UK trailer today (via Empire), followed by two clips which feature two great scenes with our lead alongside his two aforementioned supporters. Check them out below and my Sundance review here.


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 his priest, he sets out to make his dream a reality.

The Sessions arrives on October 26th, 2012 and shows at TIFF.

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