Normal people

About movie

Year 2000, last months of Milosevic`s regime, in suburbs of Belgrade.
Group of friends meets every night in a local cafe. They dream of leading
normal lives.

Steva the bartender is in love with an actress.

Duya is in love with his motorbike.

Bane the bar owner is planning to steal it.

Nikola the war veteran is dreaming of getting a job.

Toma the ambulance driver is in love with Mira.

Mira is in love with a local criminal. He is abusing her. Sometimes she thinks she is in love with Toma…

The Crew

  • Director: Oleg Novković
  • Producers: Maksa Ćatović, Cooky Zieche, Torsten Klein, Karl Baumgartner
  • Screenplay: Srdjan Koljević, Oleg Novković prema priči Srdjan Valjarević
  • Director of photography: Miladin Čolaković
  • Editor: Marko Glušac
  • Music: Nikola Pejaković
  • Set designer: Biljana and Dragan Sovilj
  • Costume designer: Nebojša Lipanović
  • Sound: Nenad Vukadinović
  • Makeup: Sandra Ivatović

* This project was co-produced under ORB and ZDF joint programme “OSTWIND”
COOKY ZIECHE is the Chief Editor of ORB’s feature film department.
TORSTEN KLEIN is the Head of Production in ORB’s film department. 

The Cast

  • Nebojša Glogovac – Toma
  • Ljubinka Klarić – Mira
  • Ivan Jevtović – Nikola
  • Nikola Djuričko – Steva
  • Slobodan Ninković – Bane
  • Vladan Dujović – Duja
  • Branislav Popović – Krle
  • Mirjana Lazarević – Irena
  • Radoslav Milenković – Doktor
  • Bogdan Diklić – Asistent 1

  • Nikola Pejaković – Asistent 2
  • Milena Dravić – Tomina tetka
  • Aleksandar Berček – Nikolin ujak
  • Tanja Bosković – Mirina majka
  • Dragan Jovanović – Nikolin ratni drug
  • Zoran Cvijanović – Banetov otac

Director’s notes

Belgrade suburb – ghetto within the ghetto.
Hopelessness, claustrophobia and loneliness of my generation in the last months of Milosevic`s regime. It looks like it`s never going to end.

After-war atmosphere and depression are sharp. Lives of my friends, with all their needs, ambitions, dreams and expectations are worthless. All moral and social values are destroyed; the country in which we were born and brought up is destroyed. We got used to war, death and fear. For ten years we are watching and experiencing death and destruction. There is no job, no money. Life is just a struggle for survival. We live in uncertainty. And violence. Anything could happen any moment. We are hostages trapped in the time and space where we are, locked in claustrophobic system. And the future looks like life in misery and poverty.

Ghetto, the lack of choice, only underline the problem. Characters are trying to fight for their place in the sun, and find some meaning and
balance in their endangered lives. Story can take place anywhere, in Berlin, Paris, New York, Oslo…but in Belgrade it`s special.
It`s not the intention of this film to offer any explanation, but to treat the fate of individuals, just dreaming of becoming ”normal people” leading
”normal lives”. But they are far from normal.

There is no place to go from here and to stay is unbearable. It`s a closed trap. Expectations are modest and simple. But solutions are not visible.
It is a life that is every day the same, lost in unfulfilled dreams.  All my characters are young people. They know each other very well,
they meet every night in the same place, the cafe… They are disappointed, disillusioned every new day is the proof that it won`t get any better, and there is no escape. Each of them wants to get out, to survive. Rarely they listen to each other as they talk. There are lots of lies. Opinions are always different, even though they discuss trivial things. The important is always left unsaid.

Visual key is simplicity. Bare spaces. The colors are muted; the main impression is achromatic. The intention is to make an impression of black-and-white film in color.

Style of the film, for me, is poetic neo-realism.