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Novak

Harry Lagoussis

Greece, France, Serbia

synopsis

Dr. Novak, an ageing Serbo-Croatian former neuroscientist, lives a grey, reclusive life in the suburbs of Athens. Having been branded a paranoid schizophrenic for his radical research on the effects of electromagnetic radiation on humans, he now keeps his old utopian dreams at bay with heavy psychiatric medication.

When a young admirer, Petros, finds him and tries to convince him to continue his past research, Dr. Novak is torn between maintaining his sanity and pursuing his dreams of saving humankind. In the end hope prevails. Dr. Novak quits his medication and follows Petros to New Atlantis, an intersectional art/science residency built on Dr. Novak’s old theories. There, surrounded by young scientists, artists and dreamers, his life acquires meaning again.

But as his messiah complex resurfaces, Dr. Novak keeps pushing himself to breaking point, risking his second chance at happiness in pursuit of a higher goal that might only exist in his mind.

intention

Novak is a film about how each person builds their own view of the world and how, in extreme cases, this can lead to full-blown paranoia and madness. It follows the character of Dr. Nikola Novak, a modern-day Don Quixote who devotes his life to building a better world, setting the bar so high that he is doomed to fail.

My goal is to show someone with a messiah complex as a three-dimensional human being. In the film, Dr. Novak keeps restructuring reality in his head to live up to the expectations he has set for himself, in short to avoid getting hurt. In this respect, he is not really different from any of us. We may like to think of ourselves as rational beings, but our worldviews are more biased by our emotional needs than we would like to admit.

Also, by feeling for a character like Dr. Novak, my hope is that the audience will come out of the cinema thinking that we need visionaries like him, no matter how crazy they may seem. They might just be our only hope in this mad world.

videos

An ageing, delusional neuroscientist gets a second chance at saving the world.
6272-harry-lagoussis
Harry Lagoussis

Scriptwriter, Film Director

production notes

original title
Novak

directed by
Harry Lagoussis

produced byHeretic Outreach
52, Tzavella street
15451, Athens
Greece

in co-production with
Cinéma Defacto – France
Non-Aligned Films – Serbia

current financial need
€ € 1.100.000