Cidade Pássaro

Shine Your Eyes
Musician Amadi has not heard from his older brother Ikenna in a long time. He travels from Nigeria to the Brazilian metropolis of São Paulo where the mathematically gifted Ikenna is supposed to be working as a professor at a technological institute – at least that is what it says on the institute’s homepage. But not only is there no trace of Ikenna, the institute does not even exist. With support from both his uncle and Ikenna’s ex-lover, and in possession of his brother’s mysterious notes and calculations, Amadi sets off in search of his sibling.
Shot in 4:3 screen format, Brazilian director Matias Mariani’s debut feature film is an enigmatic exploration that operates on several levels. The Nigerian family tradition, in which the first-born plays a special role, is investigated alongside São Paulo’s avant-garde architecture, the working lives and dreams of the city’s immigrants and the communication between Amadi and the Brazilians, who first have to find a common language. Mathematics, the study of coincidence and music build a fragile bridge between the cultures which appears to be as liable to collapse as the city’s empty skyscrapers.
by Matias Mariani
with O. C. Ukeje, Chukwudi Iwuji, Indira Nascimento, Paulo Andre, Ike Barry
Brazil / France 2020 Portuguese, English, Igbo, Hungarian, Chinese 102’ Colour World premiere


  • O. C. Ukeje (Amadi Igbomaeze)
  • Chukwudi Iwuji (Ikenna Igbomaeze)
  • Indira Nascimento (Emilia Nascimento)
  • Paulo Andre (Miro Kuzko)
  • Ike Barry (Ogboh)


Director Matias Mariani
Screenplay Matias Mariani, Chika Anadu, Francine Barbosa, Júlia Murat, Maíra Bühler, Roberto Winter
Cinematography Leonardo Bittencourt
Editing Isabelle Dedieu, Luisa Marques
Music Flemming Nordkrog
Sound Design Xavier Thibault
Sound Gabriela Cunha
Production Design Fernando Timba
Costumes Cris Rose, Jeane Figueiredo
Make-Up Simone Souza
Assistant Director Helena Ungaretti
Casting Carla Stronge, Maria Clara Escobar
Production Manager Lara Lima
Producers Matias Mariani, Marie-Pierre Macia, Juliana Funaro, Claire Gadea, Renata  Wolter, Issis Valenzuela, Junyoung Jang
Executive Producers Eduardo Nasser, Issis Valenzuela

Matias Mariani

After studying film at NYU and directing the short film O não de São Paulo, he worked as a producer on several successful Brazilian and international films before directing his first feature-length documentary A vida privada dos hipopótamos in 2014. He wrote the screenplay for Julia Murat’s feature film Pendular which won the FIPRESCI Award at the 2017 Berlinale. Shine Your Eyes is his first fiction feature film; it was developed at the Cine Qua Non Lab in Mexico.

Filmography (selection)

2014 A vida privada dos hipopótamos (I Touched All Your Stuff); documentary 2019 Cidade pássaro (Shine Your Eyes); Panorama

Bio- & filmography as of Berlinale 2020