Nigerian Movie: A Review of the Nollywood Movie FIFTY by Ebony Life Films
A Review of the Movie FIFTY
Cast: Nse Ikpe Etim, Dakore Akande, Iretiola Doyle, Omoni Oboli
Director: Biyi Bandele
Synopsis: The movie shows four grown women who are all very successful at their respective careers but whose lives intertwine in a story of love, betrayal and the struggles of mixing their personal lives with business and keeping their friendship.
The Nigerian movie industry is starting to really impress a lot of Nigerians and everyday as more and more Nigerians are proud of the metamorphosis currently happening in Nollywood. Any Nigerian would agree that many film-loving Nigerians, for a long time, haven’t been too impressed with Nollywood. I have always been hopeful and have somewhat followed this growth from the comfort of my TV and it’s such a joy to me that people are now willing to pay money to watch Nigerian movies at the cinemas. The movies aren’t exactly super yet though, but I see the enthusiasm in Nigerians. I love it!
Fifty showed Lagos in an amazing light. In fact, I think any foreigner who’s only ever heard terrible stories about Nigeria and Lagos specifically, might be confused if they ever get to watch this movie. You don’t see all the roughness that we know is in Lagos. You don’t see anything bad. For a few minutes, it felt weird.
The four women in this movie eased into their roles quite effortlessly. Acting wasn’t spectacular but it was good nevertheless. It’ll be important to note Ireti Doyle. First of all, she had a nice blend of proper English, pidgin and Yoruba languages. Secondly, It was somewhere between odd and exciting to see her mess around with her boy toy. Fifty actually pushed the boundary on what passes for a sex scene in a Nigerian movie. Regardless, I don’t think it was overdone. Especially because the average sex scene in most Hollywood movies is way worse than that.
Biyi Bandele, as the director, did quite an impressive job although there were a few places where the actors/actresses seemed to be a little too detached from their characters. The shots were amazing. They were beautiful. They made Lagos beautiful. There was a little too much of the Lekki-Ikoyi bridge though. There’s probably a good reason for that, but it was a little too much. The soundtrack was good too and it was also lovely seeing King Sunny Ade, Waje, Femi Kuti and Tiwa Savage performing.
One thing I fear though, is that the film is extremely relatable for Nigerians and that might be why they love the movie so much. Many people might be used to the regular, native doctor or runs girl Nigerian story and movies like this might be a big relief but that might be all.
The movie also didn’t end well. Too many things were left to the imagination. Maybe it was an omission or maybe they deliberately left us to complete the story ourselves (which is probably the option they’d pick) but nevertheless, I (and a few other people) really think the movie could have ended on a better note.
Movie Review by Tolulope Ajiboye (@iamnotJUKE)