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Often when I see a film that is either called a ‘documentary’ or based on ‘a true story,’ I find myself wanting to know how true the film really is.  The question that repeatedly comes to my mind is “am I being manipulated/mislead by the film?”  I want to know the ‘truth.’

And then the next question arises, “Does it really matter if the film departs from the reality, from the facts?

In a film I recently saw and recommend, The Sessions, I again experienced those questions.

If you have seen the film, then here is an article written by Mike O’Brien and an interview with him you may find of interest. Together, they add to The Sessions and raise questions about the film.

On Seeing a Sex Surrogate, Mike O’Brien, The Sun Magazine, May, 1990.  This article served as the basis for The Sessions and goes a bit beyond the film

Breathing Lessons: The Life and Work of Mark O’Brien, by Jessica Yu, a 35-minute documentary that is largely an interview with Mike O’Brien in 1994. It won an Oscar in 1966 for Best Documentary Short Subject.  (There are three 15-second ads that interrupt the video, but stick with it. It’s worth it.)

Your thoughts?