International Competition

City of the Sun

Rati Oneli
Screening time  
26.02. / Monday, 19:00 - 21:00 Theatre 5  
28.02. / Wednesday, 15:00 - 17:00 Theatre 1  
02.03. / Friday, 12:00 - 14:00 Theatre 4  
04.03. / Sunday, 14:00 - 16:00 Theatre 5  
The lives, dreams and destinies of extraordinary characters unfold amidst the ruins of a semi-abandoned mining town.

Up to 50 percent of the world’s manganese, a vital metal across the globe, used to be mined in Chiatura, in western Georgia. Today, it resembles an apocalyptic ghost town and film portrays a few of the remaining inhabitants. Music teacher Zurab dismantles ramshackle concrete buildings and sells the iron girders to make some money on the side. Archil still works in the mine but his real passion is the local amateur theatre group. Despite being malnourished, two young female athletes still train stoically for the next Olympic Games. Oneli provides fascinating insights into a living environment whose bleak industrial ruins appear at once colossal and like a film set. A jumble of clapped out electric wires and aging cable cars runs through the city like the clogged-up arteries of an ailing organism that resists the flow of life in untiring fashion. City of the Sun brings home the ephemeral nature of utopias. In a city where the sun never shines, it is only its inhabitants that generate warmth.


Rati Oneli

Rati Oneli was born in 1977 in Tbilisi, Georgia. He earned a Master’s degree in Middle East Studies in Tbilisi and then studied International Relations and International Media in New York. Rati Oneli also works as a producer and editor. City of the Sun is his first feature-length film.

General sponsor

Mzis Qalaqi

Georgia, USA
2017, 103'

Directed by:
Rati Oneli

Screenplay by:
Dea Kulumbegashvili, Rati Oneli

Arseni Khachaturan

Edited by:
Ramiro Suarez

Rati Oneli, Dea Kulumbegashvili, Jim Stark

Produced by:
OFA / Office of Film Architecture

Festivals & Awards:

Sarajevo Film Festival 2017 –  Heart of Sarajevo for Best Documentary Film; goEast Festival of Central and Eastern European Film 2017 – Award of the Federal Foreign Office for Cultural Diversity; DOCUMENTAMADRID 2017 – Best Feature; International Competition Sheffield Doc/Fest 2017 – Art Doc Award; Batumi International Art-house Film Festival 2017 – Special Mention; Minsk International Film Festival Listapad 2017 – Special Jury Award; Tbilisi International Film Festival 2017 – Best Documentary Award; IDFA 2017; RIDM 2017; Verzio International Human Rights Documentary Film Festival 2017; Karlovy Vary International Film Festival 2017; Reykjavík International Film Festival 2017;IndieLisboa International Film Festival 2017; Vilnius Documentary Film Festival 2017; DMZ International Documentary Film Festival 2017; Pärnu Film Festival 2017; Astra Film Festival 2017