Originally uploaded by NollywoodForever
Father’s Blood ~ 2009
Story, Screenplay and Direction – Tchidi Chikere
Mike Ezuruonye – Matthew
Mercy Johnson – Olivia
Patience Ozokwor – Salome
Ifeanyi Ikechukwu – Sarge
John Mgbere – Chief Orthega
Vivian Ezejiaku – Nurse
Ugo Uwagbama – Ishmael
Sunday Irogboli – Akpan
Jefrey Iloba – Briggs
Sochima Jonathan – Grace
Jonathan Ganagana – Thomas
Sule Rahmat – Mimi
Chukwuoma Ejikeme – Abigail
Nneji Uju – Ugo
My Rating 77%
Sarge’s bosses have told him that they want to retire him at the end of the month. He is not in support of this at all as he is still fit and desperate to work because he has a family to support including a 23 year old son in school. His pleas to keep his job fall on deaf ears and his bosses will not recant their decision. In a fit of desperation Sarge resorts to extreme measures to ensure that his family are provided for, and he is willing to lose his life in the process.
Sarge played by Ifeanyi Ikechukwu is a G. As he robs the Bureau de Change where he works as a security guard he points the gun at his boss, who is laying face down on the floor and roars at him,
“Chief, you want to retire me? Come and retire me now! You want to retire me again? I will retire you now!”
Ifeanyi is cast well as the man who is driven to an out of character act by desperation. The torment is written all over his face through his expression. He interpreted the role very well. Forced retirement is a real issue that people of retirement age have to deal with every day the world lover. They are made to feel useless and hopeless even if they are able bodied and fit to work as we can see in this movie. Having no job with a family to support knocks Sarge’s pride as a man.
On the other hand the role of the Chief was minor but majorly butchered. Chief Chief! What can I say – this guy’s acting is more that horrible. Maybe if I say it in French it will lessen the pain I felt when watching him. Il est très horrible!!! His name is John Mgbere and I surely hope not to see him again unless he is not talking. If he is somebody’s friend or relative… A beg was it necessary for him to have a speaking role?
After Sarge commits the robbery he speeds off in the getaway car to some remote woodland area where he buries the suitcase. He then calls his wife and tells her where he has buried the money and what he intends for her to do with it,
“It is for Matthew… Tell him it is his father’s blood. He must use that money and become someone in life.”
He then directs her to present the money to him in 2 years time when he is 25. In this we see a father’s love for his son and desire to see him son succeed where he did not. He is even willing to give up his life to ensure that his son enjoys a better quality of life. He knows that his boss will come for his family if he simply runs away so he makes sure that he alerts them to where he is by shooting his rifle, so that they will kill him and in turn leave his family alone.
Why are we shown Salome, Sarge’s wife taking money out of the gold case and hiding it under the bed? I thought she was doing that to then get rid of the suitcase but then fast-forward to two years later when she is presenting Matthew with the money and we see all the money neatly stacked back in the gold case. Why show her taking it out of the case? Why not have her hide the whole case underneath the bed? That made no sense to me.
Matthew is told to use the money wisely but what does the stupid boy go and do? He goes to buy a car to impress a girl that he was hawking goods on the roadside with, all because she says she will sleep with him if he has a car! He comes by where she sells her new goods with his new car and on top of that he is decked out in sunglasses and some brand spanking new attire. I thought this was a bit too much of a transformation in the one day. So because he buys a car he must go on a shopping trip too?
Matthew’s change in character I felt was too sudden. You have bought a car and some new clothes and all of a sudden you are talking with a posh-ish accent, it felt a little unbelievable to me. On the contrary when he decks out Olivia in her new clothes she looks different but still retains the local razzness that she had about her.
Matthew squanders his money on fast living and after his car is wrecked he really has nothing at all to show for it. His mother finds out and is distraught that her husband has died for nothing. Olivia almost gets herself killed by Matthew after he sees her talking to a man in the hotel where she is staying, and finds himself in prison because of this. We see how his father’s ill gotten gains have only brought his misery, but should the sins of the father be revisited upon the son?
We see how the pressure of trying to live up to his parent’s expectations and the guilt on his head about not making the most of his father’s sacrifice leads Matthew to using alcohol and sometimes weed as a coping mechanism.
There is a scene in part 2 which is hilarious. Olivia is now born again and trying to get Matthew to straighten out his life and marry her but despite the more modest dress you can still see the thug in her. She rolls up to his house determined to change his life by force. When he tries to escape her she grabs him and wraps her legs around him to the point where her asks her, “Is it by force to marry?” to which she exclaims, “yes!”Another hilarious scene involving Mercy Johnson is when she sees him on the street with one of his girls. She beats her up in the middle of the street and then runs back to Matthews house ready to descend on him should he come back. She then sees him with his alcohol and chases him until she wrestles the containers from him!
Alocholism and addiction is an important topics touched on in the movie. We see how the effects go beyond the person who is addicted. People close to an alcoholic are affected in that they have to deal with the erratic behaviour, the aggression, the stealing, and the shame involved. Matthew thinks only of alcohol. One one occasion he runs out of money and screams at his mother,
“Give me money ooo and let me go and drink beer before the cold ones go hot.”
It is comic but so tragic at the same time. The ending was unpredicatable. I thought it was going to be a fairy tale ending where Matthew becomes born again and he and Olivia live happily ever after. It was not an idealistic ending in that sense but it was very real. Very often where addiction is involved there actually is no happy ending and lives are wrecked or lost in the process. It is a sad situation where a mother sees the only way for her son to be free is in taking his life, and Salome expresses that out loud,
“It is good for you to be dead… I have watched you drowning in your own vomit… I have set you free.”
I liked this movie. I would recommend it. The main characters played their roles well and complimented each other. The use of the slow motion and sound effects to go along with it at the end of the movie were very nicely done and added to the dramatics of the whole scene. My only criticisms would be the sudden change in Mike’s accent. Sound also needed some improvement. Many times when the scene would change there would be a block in sound which was very noticeable and it happened more than one. THUMBS UP!
NB: At the end of Part 1 there is an epilogue despite the part 2 Tchidi why? I want to know. Is this in case people only buy part 1 or what? Someone please tell me! I believe this movie is 2009 but then in one scene they have Mike singing Sisquo’s unleash the dragon so who really knows if this is repackaged or not?
Nollywood Production Watch Nigerian African Movies Movie Reviews Review Lagos Idumota