Восхождение (The Ascent) 1977 Ages 15+
3.15PM Sun 31 Jul 2022 (1hr 49mins)
GOMA | Cinema A | Free
The Ascent will screen from an imported 35mm print.
The Ascent is Larisa Shepitko’s most celebrated achievement and a work that is often cited as one of the greatest Soviet films ever made. With her untimely death in 1979, it would become Shepitko’s final film: a poetic coda to a life cut tragically short.
Two partisan soldiers trek into the unforgivingly bleak landscape of wintery Belorussia to search for supplies during World War II. Ambushed by German soldiers, they face choices that threaten their lives and challenge the foundations of their souls. Starkly shot and rich with religious allegory, The Ascent is a potent portrayal of war infused with a humanist spirit.
Much like her debut Heat 1963, the production of this film was beset by difficulties. To more authentically capture the arduousness of the characters’ journey, Shepitko shot in Russian forests in the middle of winter, resulting in frostbite in members of the cast and crew. She continued to suffer from longstanding sickness and spinal injuries, yet pushed through these obstacles amidst the inhospitable conditions. Given the uncompromising nature of the completed film, it was expected it film would be met with hostility by the Soviet censors. Instead, it was hailed as a masterful capturing of the horrors of war and became an international success, winning the Golden Bear at the 1977 Berlin Film Festival.
35MM, MONO, BLACK AND WHITE, 111 MINUTES, USSR, RUSSIAN/GERMAN (ENGLISH SUBTITLES) / DIRECTOR: LARISA SHEPITKO / SCRIPT: YURI KLEPIKOV, LARISA SHEPITKO / BASED ON THE NOVEL BY VASILIY BYKOV / CINEMATOGRAPHERS: VLADIMIR CHUKHNOV, PAVEL LEBESHEV / EDITOR: VALERIYA BELOVA / PROD CO: MOSFILM / PRINT SOURCE: NATIONAL AUDIOVISUAL INSTITUTE – KAVI, HELSINKI / RIGHTS: JANUS FILMS / SCREENING FORMAT: 35MM