Director: Terrance Odette
Screenwriters: Terrance Odette

Institute History

  • 2000 Sundance Film Festival


Heater could be a bleak holiday movie. Shot in Winnipeg, Canada, over the course of fourteen days during the dead of winter, this film is a cinema vérité glimpse into urban homelessness through an encounter between two men. Gary Farmer as Ben, an aboriginal homeless man, is looking for shelter for the night. His counterpart, played by Steven Ouimette, is looking for the same. Their only hope is a forty-dollar space heater and a dubious receipt of purchase.

It is Gary Farmer’s performance (Smoke Signals, Dead Man, Powwow Highway) that compels the narrative and draws the viewer into a cross section of our society that we all know exists but are more comfortable ignoring. First-time feature director Terrance Odette creates a cold realism in this raw and hyper-naturalistic film.

— Heather Rae

Screening Details

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