Marlen Khutsiev is best remembered for his controversial portrait of Soviet youth in the 1960s, Mne Dvadsat Let (1965). Khutsiev began the film in 1959, but due to constant harassment from censors acting on behalf of Soviet leader Khruschev, who believed the film would cast Soviet youth in a poor light, it was not completed until 1964. Co-written by Gennadi Shpalikov and originally named Zastava Illicha/The Illych Gate, the first released version (titled Mne Dvadsat Let) was heavily edited; still it was a well-wrought effort and it won a major award at the Venice Film Festival. A completely restored version would not be released until 1989. Born and raised in what is now Tbilsi, Georgia, Khutsiev started out as an assistant in Gruziafilm Studios' trick photography laboratory. He then studied film direction under Igor Savchenko at Moscow's VGIK. Though he graduated in 1950, Khutsiev did not make his feature-film directorial debut until 1956 when he co-helmed Vesna na Zarechnoy Ulitse/Spring in Zarechnaya Street with Feliks Mironer. The film was considered important because it was one of the first to present a hero obsessed with making moral choices. Following the death of Mikhail Romm in 1983, Khutsiev teamed with Elem Klimov and G.N. Lavrov to complete Romm's I Vse-taki Ya Veryu.../And Nonetheless I Believe (1983). After that, he did not direct another film until 1991's Beskonechnost/Infinitas.