When Day Breaks
PROD Goran Paskaljevic
SCR Filip David, Goran Paskaljevic
CAM Milan Spasic
ED Kristina Pozenel
MUS Vlatko Stefanovski
PROD CO Nova Film / Arsam Film
Misha Brankov (Mustafa Nadarevic) is a retired music professor. One morning he receives a letter requesting him to contact the Jewish Museum in Belgrade. At the museum, he learns that during an excavation on the sewers at the city’s old fairgrounds—previously the site of an infamous concentration camp where some 48,000 Serbian Jews and Gypsies perished during the Second World War—an iron box was found. The contents of the box will change the professor’s life.
The box contains personal documents pertaining to the professor’s identity and an unfinished musical score called “When Day Breaks.” The box was buried by a concentration camp inmate, the Jewish musician Isaac Weiss, in the year 1941. Eventually, the professor discovers that when he was an infant, his real parents, the Weisses, entrusted him to their friends, the Brankovs, just before they were taken into the camp. The initial shock of the professor’s discovery soon gives way to a determination to fulfill the shattered dreams that he has inherited. It is something that infuses him with new purpose and provides him with a second lease on life.
Screenwriter Filip David (Cabaret Balkan, A Midwinter Night’s Dream) once again collaborates with celebrated Serbian director Goran Paskaljevic, this time with a haunting drama close to his own life, one that takes its humble protagonist into the shadows of the past.