The story evolves around the last days of Soviet writer, poet and Gulag survivor Varlam Shalamov. The film follows the efforts of two of Shalamov's most devoted admirers to preserve the author's legacy, remnants of which they seek out in lost manuscripts and audiocassettes, and even in the ageing Shalamov's own collapsing memory. Having lost his sight and hearing and living in a retirement home, he carried on doing the only thing that mattered to him - writing - until his final breath.
This film is a testament to the value of writings that tell the unpalatable truths of the 20th century. To evoke the gritty texture of the Soviet world, Sententia is shot on 16mm black and white film.