Guilty Pleasures: Emem Isong’s story of incompatible relationships works!

This is a real good movie, and one of the better films of 2009. NIGERIA

Overview

In this film, Ramsey Nouah plays the role of Terso, an ambitious business man who needs just one thing in the form of Liz (Nse Ikpe-Etim) to complete his vainglorious pursuit of the “perfect” life; but in Liz’s case it means the perfect trophy wife. Terso’s younger brother Bobby (Majid Michael) is an up and coming fashion photographer, who becomes fond of Liz, especially after he finds out she was a former fashion model before marrying his brother.

Development

Story/Screenplay

The story is by Emem Isong, and the screenplay is by Uyai Ikpe-Etim and Nse Ikpe-Etim. The concept’s great, but a few things I don’t favor. I don’t like the film’s storytelling style and narrative (telling a story within a story), because I think the format works better for literature as opposed to film. In literature, readers are not bound by the illusions of times and places, but rather are given freedom to control both the pacing (time) and visualization (place) of a narrative by reading stories in chapters, and using mental imagery through their imaginations. Also, the way the movie ends is quite theatrical and likened to a theatre stage performance.

The side story is not as interesting, and seems somewhat irrelevant to the main one.

Score: 9/10

Pre-production

Performances

Ramsey Nouah

Ramsey Nouah deserves nominating for this performance! It’s that good. He’s been so impressive this year with stand-out roles in films like Hidden Treasure and Emem Isong’s first guilty pleasure Reloaded (The sequel to Games Men Play).

Score: 10/10

Majid Michael

Sensational! Majid Michael speaks a bit of Nigerian Pidgin in this movie, when Bobby tells Terso that he is “Naija for life”. The chemistry exhibited between Majid, Nse and Nouah is wonderful, and gives the movie its intricate triumvirate of perfect cast performances.

Score: 10/10

Mercy Johnson

Mercy Johnson is Boma, a woman scorned after having a one-night stand with a married man (Rob Loner), that seemingly turns into a casual relationship. I’ll describe Mercy’s performance with one word…P-A-S-S-I-O-N!

Score: 8/10

Desmond Elliott

In this film, Desmond assumes the role of Mr. Okoro, a prominent business person who dutifully aids Bobby with his goal of becoming successful in the field of fashion photography. Desmond Elliott also directed this film together with Daniel Ademinokan. Desmond plays his role to a tee! I’ve never seen him any better.

Score: 10/10

Nse Ikpe-Etim

As noted, Nse is also credited with writing the film’s script. I think she does an amazing job in the role as Liz, and has great screen chemistry with both male lead actors. I expect to hear and see much more good things in regard to Miz Nse.

Score: 9/10

Production

Lighting & Sound

Lighting and sound is fantastic! Lighting is by Jacob David, and sound is by Ololade Gentle.

Score: 9/10

Make-up & Wardrobe

Excellent! The actors looked and dressed their parts fittingly, but not only that, they looked like stars.

Make-up is by Temisan Etsede and Annabel Ewere, and wardrobe is by Uche Nancy and Ogochukwu Okechi.

Score: 10/10

Post-production

Editing

Scenes transitioned fairly smooth from one another throughout the course of the entire film; editing is by Uche Alexmoore.

Score: 9/10

Music/Film Scoring

Music is by Austin Erowele, and was really well done. Nice job Austin!

Score: 9/10

Conclusion

Closing words

In closing, I would highly recommend this film for several reasons. Despite having one scene in which I feel both actors seemed awkwardly rigid in their deliveries (the scene Liz questions Terso’s fidelity), Ramsey Nouah gives a performance unmatched. Terso’s passive aggressive personality is clear throughout the film, as he never raises his voice nor becomes angry, building up unto an amazing and unforgettable climax! This film provides a great lesson in relational compatibility, illustrated perfectly during a dinner scene of part one. Terso leads a conversation at the table about the current President of the United States Barack Obama, and how he strongly feels that the best post for Hillary Clinton is the Secretary of State. If not demonstrating Terso’s innate sexism, this scene significantly differentiates the compatibility of Michelle and Barack Obama’s relationship, versus the incompatibility of Liz and Terso’s relationship.

Aggregate score: 93% rating

Personal score: 3 1/2 of 4 stars PopCorn

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Comments
12 Responses to “Guilty Pleasures: Emem Isong’s story of incompatible relationships works!”
  1. victoria says:

    This is a great review, not just because I love the movie but because the review is well written…Keep up the good work Tru..

  2. truforia says:

    Thanx Vickie, and much appreciated! *)

  3. I have a new wordpress buddy LOL I liked it alot but I didn’t love it… Maybe I was expecting too much!

  4. truforia says:

    Yeah, I can understand that with high expectations comes high expectations. lol Thanx fo’ da luv Beautiful! *)

    P.S. I guess we’re a tag team now..8D

  5. Olivia says:

    Tru, thanks a lot for a well thought out review. I think both you and Nollywood forever seem to have read my mind cos I’ve been searching for a site that gives excellent reviews of Naija/Ghanian movies.

    For the movie….hmmmm didn’t like it too much, Omoni’s story seemed like an after-thought and the characters just seemed to lack authenticity esp Nse’s. I still think baby girl has IT but this was not my best role for her. Ramsey is getter better like fine wine and Majid is a revelation with that naughty boy charm/sexiness. I expected a lot from the movie..just didn’t deliver. Still prefer reloaded. Emem does a fine job but I think she needs agood editor cos her movies can be wrapped in a tighter frame of 1 hr 45 min.
    I still give her props for lifting the industry with intelligent scripts and characters.

    • truforia says:

      Thanx Olivia! The side story was pretty entertaining to say the least, especially when Mercy’s character put the “dupe” on the ol’ dude and pulled the wig off; she had him by the balls by then..:-D

      Reloaded put Emem on my radar fo’ “one to watch” and Ramsey sure is coming along nicely now in his craft. Haha, Jimmy and Majid are probably the best at being the naughty boys. And Nse..well, she’s jus’ hott! ツ

      P.S. You’re right Olivia, the movies rarely need to go past 90 minutes, but til’ DVD becomes the new format, VCDs will continue to reign.

  6. barbarellanoir says:

    great job Tru!!!!!!!

  7. chetablog says:

    I have to get this film but I already know your review is seriously flawed if you gave lighting such high marks. From the trailers alone, you can tell the lighting is much of the same Nolly crap but hey I will gladly apologise if this review is on point

  8. Love the Flim love the Ending Grate Work R.N !!!!

  9. Joy says:

    I like to watch this flim how can now get it becasue i live in france.

  10. Nii says:

    Wow!congrats 2 the movie crew.Reali done a wondaful job.The actors’/actresses’ performances were implicitly and indisputably splendid,the sound was gud,the music selected 4 de respective scenes sufficed.The stori’s also nice.Kip da gud word up.

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