ACADEMY AWARD NOMINATION:
- Best Supporting Actress – Helen Hunt
I’m always particularly intrigued by movies that only get nominated for one Oscar, especially if it’s for a performance. I usually just end up wondering why it didn’t get nominated for more. Just like it was with The Impossible, The Sessions was no except to that.
I’m really surprised John Hawkes didn’t get a nomination . . . especially because, let’s be honest, he played kind of an Oscar-bait character in Mark O’Brien, a paralyzed-from-the-neck-down poet. Instead, the one nomination went to Helen Hunt, which I know Chris was happy about (more on that later).
I was nervous about watching The Sessions, because I fast-forwarded a little and saw a guy in an iron lung. Since most of the Oscar movies we’ve seen aren’t exactly family fun, I thought for sure this was going to be devastating. Chris even said, “This is going to be awful,” but we watched it because it was one of the shorter nominees and we could squeeze it in after our average Monday night of The Bachelor. But I was really pleasantly surprised with The Sessions. None of the characters had ulterior motives and everyone was generally nice, pleasant, and well-meaning. This might make it sound boring, but to me, it was just refreshing. It helps that the characters weren’t boring due to the performances of actors like John Hawkes, Helen Hunt, and William H. Macy.
The movie essentially revolves around how someone as disabled as O’Brien, who spends most of his time in an iron lung, can possibly have sex, and with whom; a topic that is almost surely wondered about much more than discussed. But it was nice to see a movie deal with sex frankly but not crudely. To hear what might usually be considered crude terms spoken in a more loving way actually felt a lot more realistic.
And so I also discovered that Chris has a secret (at least to me) and large crush on Helen Hunt, stemming back to her Mad About You days. So, needless to say, he was happy with this pick.
Before The Sessions started I thought I was going to hate it. I really didn’t know anything about it other than Helen Hunt was up for Best Supporting Actress for it. Once it started we found out that it was about a man with a disability, another reason why I didn’t think I would like it. I didn’t feel like watching a sad movie.
Finally the story began to unfold and it wasn’t sad, well it was sad to some degree but it was about sex, and the main character was funny. Though he was severely disabled the main character had a great amount of charm to him. Not only is the main character interesting, though; basically everyone is. The characters in this film are fantastic and there was never a time when I didn’t want to be watching this film.
Another huge plus was that this film was about sex. Though it’s about a disabled man trying to have sex for the first time I was never uncomfortable. You like him so much as a person you want him to finally experience full penetration. Another big plus was seeing Helen Hunt naked, and I mean fully naked. She’s definitely not the most attractive but there is something exciting about seeing her naked after all those years on Mad About You.
Go see this movie. It should have been nominated for far more than Best Supporting Actress!