Thursday, August 29, 6:00 p.m. | Despite her relatively short career (she directed only four feature films before her tragic death at age 41) Ukrainian-Soviet filmmaker Larisa Shepitko was a massive talent. Her first and final films are both profound works that intimately explore the resilience of man under extreme conditions. HEAT, set in rural Kazakhstan, focuses on the student Kemel, who arrives in the remote area to work at a communal farm camp. Young and idealistic, he is soon confronted with the challenges of rural life. (Shepitko suffered from hepatitis during production and had to direct from a stretcher—that real life difficulty is felt on screen.) Set in World War II, THE ASCENT—widely regarded as Shepitko’s masterpiece, and winner of the Golden Bear for Best Film at the 1977 Berlin Film Festival—follows two Soviet soldiers who are navigating the blindingly snow-covered Belarusian countryside to find food when they are captured by Nazis. While HEAT feels almost like a verite documentary and THE ASCENT is stunningly stylized, in both films Shepitko fearlessly confronts humanity in all its complexity.

Related Event: THE ASCENT Thursday, August 29, 8:00 p.m.

Entrances and ExitsWith Entrances and Exits, we showcase the first and last films from 10 beloved filmmakers. For this series, we abide by three rules: films included must not be posthumous releases, they must be feature films, and they must be solo directorial efforts. Some of these pairings seem to speak to one another, presenting a cinematic through-line that represents a consistent voice from cinematic cradle to grave. Others represent dramatic departures, reflecting a filmmaker’s leap from emerging artist to heavyweight player. What new elements do we see when we connect these entrances and exits, and how do the bodies of work between them transform when we consider the bookends of a career? Though these filmmakers are no longer with us, they sure did leave an impression. View Entrances and Exits SeriesTickets sold individually for each film.

The Film Center is ADA accessible. This presentation will be projected without open captions. The theater is hearing-loop equipped. For accessibility requests, please email