Daniel, Marika and Leo have Tourettes. And they are fed up of being stigmatized by society and unsuccessful therapies. So they are traveling to the European far north – trying to find the place where they can be as they are.
Upon advice of neurologist Prof. Dr. Alexander Münchau, Leo, Marika and Daniel are visiting different Tourette research facilities in France and Germany. They are interviewing doctors and therapists about current treatments and confront them with personal stories of mislead therapies. A road trip together with Prof. Dr. Münchau and psychiatrist Dr. Daniel Alvarez-Fischer brings them to the Inari region in northern Finland. In the vastness and calm of the Finnish forests and lake landscape they can tic freely without fear of social pressure, suspicion, or even sanctions. They will meet with Sami people and learn about their view on life and their shamanistic rituals. And they will try out a new form of treatment: the meta-cognitive therapy, in which conscious guidance of attention plays a crucial part. New experiences and understanding let the stigma of the tics slowly vanish. The chance of a self-determined handling of their Tourettes seems more and more possible with new every in Lapland.
Born in 1980 in the small town of Seesen, Germany, Thomas studied Film at the Hamburg University of Fine Arts in the class of Wim Wenders. Since his graduation in 2008 Thomas is mainly working as a freelance cinematographer. TICS is his second feature documentary.