Ben Lewin’s The Sessions is a smart, sophisticated and honest drama about an uncomfortable subject: Virginity. One man wants to lose it. One woman’s willing to help. What helps elevate this film above an average American Pie sequel is the circumstances. The man, played by John Hawkes, is a polio survivor who is semi-paralyzed from the neck down. And the woman, played by Helen Hunt, is an impossibly sympathetic sex therapist.

The film has been working the festival circuit since Sundance, where it took home both an Audience Award and a Special Jury Prize, and is preparing for an October release. With that in mind, Empire has posted the best poster the film has produced to date. We have it below:

Writer-director Lewin bases his triumphant story on the actual experiences of San Francisco writer Mark O’Brien, who documented his time spent with a therapist. And Sessions features remarkable performances by Hunt and Hawkes, who bare their souls for Lewin’s probing cameras to tell this unique story.

Sessions seems primed and prepped for a lengthy Oscar run … except that the film didn’t quite come out of the Toronto International Film Festival with as much heat as we might have expected. Cloud Atlas, Silver Linings Playbook and other films certainly generated more Oscar heat from the Canadian fest. Not that Sessions received bad reviews. It didn’t. But Fox Searchlight has its work cut out for itself if it aims to keep this smaller movie on audience radars as the Oscar season rolls on.

Hopefully word of mouth on The Sessions will be strong after the film opens on Oct. 19. Be sure to check the film out when it reaches a theater near you.

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