ASCENTION / VOSKHOZHDENIE
Director: Larisa Shepitko
Cast: Boris Plotnikov, Vladimir Gostyukhin, Anatoly Solonitsyn, Sergey Yakovlev, Lyudmila Polyakova, Victoria Goldentul, Maria Vinogradova, Nikolai Sektimenko, Sergey Kanishchev, Vladimir Laptev
“Ascention” is a war drama directed by Larisa Shepitko based on the story “Sotnikov” by Vasil Bykov. The film takes place in occupied Belarus in the winter of 1942. Officer Sotnikov and soldier Rybak go on a sortie to get food for the partisans. After a skirmish with the policemen, they hide in the village, but after a while they are overtaken by punishers. Interrogation and torture show the true nature of the guerrillas, pushing one of them to betray.
The picture was the last one that Larisa Shepitko managed to complete before her death in a car accident. The film about two partisans won several prizes at the 1977 Berlin Film Festival, becoming the first Soviet film to win the Golden Bear.
Anton Dolin editor-in-chief of the Cinema Art magazine:
“Ascention” is a masterpiece of one of the most talented women in the history of Russian cinema, Larisa Shepitko, based on the masterpiece of Vasil Bykov, the best of the front-line prose writers. Undoubtedly, this tragic film, whose power does not dry out over the years, is a monument to the struggle of Belarus against the Nazi occupation. But you can go beyond the boundaries of the historical context, seeing in Ascension a hymn to the human spirit, the boundless ability to resist evil, whose powers surpass yours - to resist even at the most terrible cost, discarding rational arguments. Nothing can be more relevant and important in our troubled days. "
Occupied Belarus, winter 1942. Partisans - soldier Rybak and officer Sotnikov go in search of food for the partisan detachment. After a skirmish with the policemen, they hide in the village, but after a while they are overtaken by punishers. Interrogations, torture, fear ... The search for a way out, a compromise, a deal with conscience lead one of the heroes of the film to betrayal.
USSR, Mosfilm, 1976, 106 minutes