Tag Archives: Mona Lisa Chinda

Hot-Island

Hot-Island

Originally uploaded by NollywoodForever

Hot-Island ~ 2009
Story/Screenplay – Joy Stephen Anozie
Director – Emeka Jonathan
Producer – Okechukwu Ezechu

Starring:
Scot Robert – Marcus
Mona Lisa Chinda – Sylvia
Ufuoma Ejenobor – Lucy
Emeka Ike – Richie
McKenzie David – Pedro
Patience Oseni – Mama Richie
Rosemary Onyebuchi – Naomi
Okoro Stanley – Dr Mickal
Dadi Uche – CY
Ndubuisi Onwuemena – Musa
Chioma Amadi – Prostitute
Manfred Uche – Eva

Themes Explored:
Social Class
Sibling Rivalry
Jealousy

My Rating – 52%

Marcus, played by Scot Robert is a thug and the thorn in his father’s side. On the one hand he can be a superb gentleman but on the flipside he can be mean, nasty and aggressive to those around him. He had 3 sisters that question why he does not take them out as other brother’s take out their sisters and try to get a closer brotherly sisterly relationship with him, but to no avail. He does not appear to be particularly interested in any of them until his friend CY, played by Dadi Uche comes to him with a proposition. CY wants to marry Marcus’ sister Lucy (Ejenobor). At first he is opposed to the idea but after accepting a car as a gift from him throws himself wholeheartedly into the mission of getting his sister to accept CY as a suitor. The only problem is that his sister has her eyes on someone else.

*************SPOILERS*************

I thought that casting Scot Robert in the character of Marcus was spot on. I get the feeling that he is good friends with Nonso Diobi because some of his mannerisms were akin to Nonso’s in the way that he shouted and twisted up his mouth. Nevertheless he played the bad boy role with mucho gusto. There is a funny scene where he is arguing with his father, because his father is upset about his friend CY buying him a car. He is questioning him harshly and Marcus turns to him and says,

“You will deal with me in my own father’s house. Go and deal with yourself in your own father’s house.”

Ruuude! I couldn’t stop laughing. How are you going to tell your own father that he should go to his father’s house?

Ufoma was too good for this movie. She put a lot of feeling and expression into the character but the whole scenario before it made it just not believable. The story was too simplistic and not developed enough so she didn’t have much to work with. The process of falling in love was way too simple. We are not shown any build up at all. We see Richie declare his love to Lucy in an instant, and in the same way Naomi too declares her love to Richie. Since when did seeing someone from a far for a few weeks and liking the way they look translate into love? This word is thrown around too easily, and took away the realism in the movie.

Dadi Uche was the perfect choice to play the character of CY, the junkie because he looked haggard with blackened lips and yellowed teeth. He definitely looked like he had been drinking, smoking and snorting in abundance.
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SOCIAL CLASS
If the father was so opposed to Lucy dating Richie because of their differing social classes why not just sack him? It was hardly like he had been there for 10 or even 20 years. The guy just arrived 5 minutes ago and now there is all sorts of chaos going on in your home. There was never a reason given as to why the father did not just get rid of Richie.
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SIBLING RIVALRY & JEALOUSY
In one scene Lucy goes out with Richie and comes back gushing his praises to her sisters. Sylvia turns and says to her in response,

“What’s all this Richie, Richie, Richie, is that the name of some tomato puree or something?”

It is funny all the other girls were also singing his praises but then as soon as it becomes clear that he only has eyes for Lucy and they start making trips out alone things change and jealousy rears its ugly head. They start to call him scum and make her feel bad for liking him when they too were all trying to get with him.
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Editing could have been much improved. 23 minutes into Part 2 and Marcus is having a conversation with CY about Richie and he starts to say CY’s name and then quickly corrects himself to say Richie. Why not just reshoot that bit because it was a glaring and very obvious mistake? The end of the movie was just plain ridiculous. We see Richie and Lucy running in fields hugging and kissing for what seems like eternity. What is that in aid of? We get it they are in love. All the running around was too much, like a freaking tampon advert.
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The movie was decent enough so I’d recommend it if you have nothing better doing. However, ultimately is simply another rich girl falls in love with a poor driver story, the only difference being that they threw in a sibling rivalry storyline into the mix. None of the stories where particularly well developed or believable, but it is watchable, there are some good performances and comic moments.

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Behind The Ring

Behind The Ring

Originally uploaded by NollywoodForever

Behind The Ring ~ 2009
(Repackaged as Black Mirror)
Story/ Screenplay – Chikere Guide
Director – Moses Ebere
Producer – Chikere Guide
An Eastwind production

Starring:
Desmond Elliot – Colombo
Jackie Appiah – Cynthia
Mona Lisa Chinda – Vivian
Jim Lawson Maduike – Bazoka
Lynda Ekezie – Ella
Sele Kent-Sele – Edwin
Clems Onyeka – John
Ndidi Obi – Stella
Chikere Guide – Mako
Nathaniel Judgewill – James
Tegga Anighoro – Victor
Oscar Rodondo – Apostle
Stanley E Ozoemena – Bontum
Candace Jenny – Candace
Ugo White – Native Doctor
Joyce Kalu – Grandma
Muyiwa Onowu – Mako Jnr
Onyebuchi Ugwunna – Apostle Jnr
Mabel Etuk – Kate
Patricia Okolie – Magaret
John Lee – Hilary

Themes:
Murder
Greed
Jealousy
Sibling Rivalry

My Rating – 46%

James and Vivian are happily married with one son, Victor. Madly in love their union is torn apart when James is killed during a burglary at their home one night. It is suspected that the killing was orchestrated by James’s junior brother Edwin as he was known to be desperate to get his hand on their late father’s property by any means necessary.

When Victor is kidnapped and taken to a ravine by assassins it becomes painfully clear that someone is out to break up the family. We find out that not only does his brother have the motive to carry out such a dastardly act but so does  James’s best friend Edwin. Who is behind the murder and kidnapping?

*************SPOILERS*************

Six months after your husband’s death and you are telling your son to call his dad’s best friend Daddy and then you are surprised when he tells you, “he is not my daddy” A freaking six year old. What did you expect? After your husband’s death we saw Edwin declare undying love to you and you dismissed him. You were very assertive and clear that you were not interested and then all of a sudden I see a SIX MONTHS LATER caption and you guys are legally married. HABA! That is QUICK!

We can tell that Edwin is a slimy gold digger as he knows exactly how much Mona received from her husband’s death insurance payout despite her not telling him. We can see that he is a nasty piece of work in his opposition to Vivian leaving the money for her son Victor. Edwin just smells of trouble but Vivian is blinded. She thinks that it is love, exclaiming, “he even washed my panties!” My dear, who wouldn’t for 125 million Naira?
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Why in the phone call Vivian has with Edwin discussing James’ disappearance can we hear Edwin’s voice as CLEAR AS DAY as if he is in an adjoining room?

I wasn’t convinced about Mona Lisa playing the role of Jackie’s mother. It just wasn’t believable to me. We have to remember she did not have this child very young. She had this child after Victor’s disappearance. She must have been at least 25 after Victor disappeared and realistically more like 30. Any way you arrange it the maths just does not work out. If we put Jackie at 26 and Mona at 35 it is just arrant nonsense.

My darling Dessy baby looked like a big fat greasy gigolo. CHEI! See braids, see satin shirt with chest exposed, see bright red blazer with shoulder pads… SEE HORROR! I am not loving how fat his bum bum is becoming, but such is life, na lie?
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The movie started off ok but then as it went on it just got silly and became plagued with bad acting. Ella, her friends and her brother were all a big mess. The side story involving brother Mako (or was it Mike?), coke addict uncle Hilary came from nowhere and didn’t integrate well into the existing story. The movie started getting really boring around that time.
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I would not recommend this movie. The story I felt was predictable, although it didn’t end it is just inevitable that somewhere along the way brother and sister are going to get into something with each other. The movie ends with a grown up Victor, now called Colombo trying to convince Mako to quit his life of crime. It started off well then all turned into a bit of a yawn fest. I’d give it a miss!

Anointed Liars

Anointed Liars

Originally uploaded by NollywoodForever

Anointed Liars ~ 2009
Story – Stephen Anozie
Screenplay – Paul Anyaegbu
Director – Innocent Chinagorom

Starring:
Oge Okoye – Cynthia
Mona Lisa Chinda – Ann
Rose Onyebuchi – Ikaete
Funke Akindele – Flora
Dan Ugorji – Jerry
Manfred Uche – Sam
Stella Idika – Doris
Pitchman Akuta – Brother Dan
Lilly Ebeh – Lucy
Edyl Anoele – Mama
Cynthoon Manta – June
D.D Jameson – Gilbert
Ndubuisi Onwuemena – Gideon
Dan Adili – Livinus
Paul Anyaegbu – Robert
Uche Chibuzor – Misete
Maureen Uche – Uru
Uche Okonkwo – Habekuku
Stephen Anozie – I.K
Kelechi Ude – Driver
Ndukwe Ude – Abino
Chizoba Okeke – Attendant

Themes:
Ritualism
Charms
Fraud
Mugu
Christianity

My Rating 19%

A bunch of con artists comprised of a bus driver and two fake passengers scams an unsuspecting Reverend Sister, played by Oge Okoye on a bus. The bus driver tricks her into thinking that a female passenger is carrying illegal money. He refuses to let anyone off the bus and threatens to go to the police to hand over the money.

It is then that the woman carrying the dollars confesses to having thousands of dollars in the Ghana must go bag because she stole it from her fiancé, who obtained it as a result of rituals, who mistreated her and refused to marry her after 7 years. She says that she is willing to share it if one of them can neutralise the charms.

This is where another passenger who is in on the scam tells them that he knows a “man of God” that can neutralise the charm. The Reverend Sister does not want to be involved initially but eventually she is persuaded by the others as she believes that perhaps the man of God can find “her husband.”

*************SPOILERS************

If you are wondering how a nun can have a husband, believe me I was wondering about that too. Cynthia the nun explains that it is a “long story.” It is a story that we never get to actually hear.

There were so many stupid things that happened in the movie. When Cynthia refuses to be involved in the money sharing initially one of the fake passengers tells her,

“Have you thought about what dollars can do for you? Wait!”

She then waits and is listening to them persuade her and even though she tells them,

“I’m not interested in that money. That money is devilish.” She is still standing there. The woman who is pretending to have stolen the money then tells her,

“Sister please you can’t leave me.”

This whole exchange is downright RI-DI-CU-LOUS! Since when does one beg to give away thousands of dollars in Nigeria? If Cynthia didn’t want it there would be more to share amongst them. Of course it was a scam but anyone would have realised as such if they were being begged to take money.

When Cynthia goes with the other fake passengers to the man of God she is given a drink which is spiked. When she is unconscious she is robbed and wakes up in hospital. We see her being treated by her friend Ann, played by Monal Lisa Chinda, who is a doctor at the hospital and recounting her ordeal. She tells the doctor that she thought the drink they gave her was “Just water.” Ex-Cah-yooooouuse me? How is water deep deep red so deep it is almost purple-black like red wine?
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The doctor Ann has her own story to tell. From here the movie goes into Ann’s story, and we never even go back to Cynthia’s story. Her story is even more stupid. The basic premise is that Cynthia had a fiancé that was duped. She too by default was duped because she listened to what false “prophets” were telling her and her fiancé to do. She sold her family’s houses to give the prophet money to wipe a curse from her (that never existed), trekked to Abuja to be duped again and in the end lost her fiancé when he was killed in a bar brawl after confronting the conmen.

She meets another man Sam who recovers her family’s houses. Lets be serious how nonsensical is that? What did he do? Did he buy them back? She sold them to get money. It wasn’t like they were sold by someone else. She then marries him but he goes to the USA and has been missing for 3 years. She is still waiting for him although her cousin is intent on hooking her up with someone else then surprise surprise! One day he turns up with a story about being locked up in prison in America and they are reunited.
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We see how people use the supposed word of God to fit their own agendas. Cynthia is being toasted by all the brothers in church. Brother Dan tells her that they are meant to be together because he was told by God. When Cynthia expresses her disinterest he tells her,

“Don’t you believe in the word of God again?”

I am surprised that Cynthia does not fall for this line considering that she sold two houses to give money to some fraudsters who claimed that by selling the houses her fiancé would win a 2 million dollar contract. After losing all that the fraudsters send her to Abuja to be conned again. That is what you call a true mugu!
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I would not recommend this movie. Jerry played by Dan Ugorji was simply awful. At one point he is trying to chat up Ann and reeling of lines about her beauty and not even looking directly at her when trying to woo her. I had high hopes in the beginning. I was looking forward to seeing Funke Akindele in an English language film and she wasn’t bad but her part was minimal. If I closed my eyes I would have thought that I was listening to Kate Henshaw Nuttall. There was no structure to the movie and the storyline that it started off with was abandoned and never resurrected. It could have been good were the hold fraud storyline properly executed. Other questions I had were, why did they have Oge play a Reverend Sister? What was the point of that? Who was her husband? What is her story? In short a waste of time!

Reloaded

Reloaded

Originally uploaded by NollywoodForever

Reloaded ~ 2009
Story – Emem Isong
Screenplay – Emem Isong, Bola Aduwo, Nse-Ikpe Etim
Directors – Lancelot Oduwa Imasuen, Ikechukwu Onyeka

Starring:
Ramsey Noah – Femi
Desmond Elliot – Osita
Rita Dominic – Chelsea
Stephanie Okereke – Weyinmi
Ini Edo – Tayo
Van Vicker – Bube
Uche Jombo – Tracy
Nse-Ikpe Etim – Omoze
Mona Lisa Chinda – Abbey
Enyinna Nwigwe – Edwin
Mbong Amata (nee Odungide) – Nira
Temisan Isioma Etsede – Otis
Emeka Duru – Gabriel
Princess Anazodo – Bube’s Mum
Ahmed Aitity – Shola
Martha Iwoo – Ifeyinwa
Ikechukwu Onyeka – Doctor

Themes Explored:
Revenge
Karma
Desperation
Betrayal
Infidelity
Family Pressure
Societal Pressure
Abortion

My Rating: 93%

Bube and Weyinmi played by Van and Stephanie have been together for seven years and are living together as an unmarried couple. Weyinmi wants to get married and she thinks that Bube does too, but every time the marriage issue comes up he postpones their plans, claiming that it is not the right time. Will he ever marry her?

Femi and Omoze are married but Femi has a wandering eye and cannot seem to remain faithful. Omoze is relentless is trying to keep her man to herself. Will he ever be faithful to her?

Tayo is a battered wife. Amongst her friends she is constantly making excuses for her husband Osita. He, however seems to take great joy in humiliating and beating his wife. Can he change his ways?

Rita plays Chelsea the replacement presenter for a TV Talk Show, and in turn the narrator for the movie which is based around an episode in the talk show about different women’s relationships and the games men play in them. Her relationship appears to be the only one without issues, but is it really what it appears to be on the surface?

*************SPOILERS*************

Tayo knows that her husband Osita is jealous and possessive. One day she dresses up in a skimpy outfit and comes to parade it for her husband. Despite seeing the look of disapproval on his face, she twirls around and asks him,

“How do I look?”

If I knew Tayo in real life I would wonder why you are twirling around with half your nyash out in front of a man that has beat the living daylight out of you for lesser offences. She knows the drill, yet every time she is abused she seems surprised. In response to her twirling he replies,

“Loose as usual. You look like a very cheap whore.”

Tayo looks shocked and upset by his words. Upset I can understand, shocked No.

We see how Tayo has ended up in her marriage as a result of family pressure. She tells her friend,

“To think when I was a single girl. All my parents could think about was marriage… Now look at me I am a punching bag.”

Her statement is candid and makes you think about the importance of not bowing down to societal/ familial pressure against your own desires. After all only we live our own lives. We see Tayo’s sorry state. She is married and unhappy. Her self esteem has been seriously knocked and her husband will not let her take on a job which means she has no financial independence.

Ini Edo does a great job as Tayo. There is a scene where she tries to break up with Osita. She conveys the emotion of a heartbroken woman who has reached breaking point well. Her tears feel real, and the scene is only slightly marred by the over the top sound effects of Osita beating her.
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Ramsey Noah plays Femi a smooth Lover Boy. Not only is he smooth but his character is very funny and shameless too. After he is caught cheating, instead of being apologetic he tells his wife, Omoze,

“You go around running like a mad dog. You could win an award for being the best nag and tout… Sorry? What for?”

Omoze is busy chasing off some of the many women that he is philandering with, going as far as to kidnap one woman and to take her back to their home and beat her. Her anger seems misplaced to me. Was it the woman that vowed to be loyal to you? Or was it your roving husband? Why is she more vengeful to the woman? Why do some women do this?

After Femi loses his job because of Omoze turning up at his work and causing a ruckus, by beating up his boss, suspecting her of being a girlfriend, he threatens to leave her. Omoze refuses that as even being an option, vowing to protect her marriage with her blood.

Nse Ikpe is an intense actress. You will believe that she loves this man with every drop of her blood. She does desperate and exasperated very very well. Even during the comic scenes she does not falter.
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Weyinmi is pregnant, and after being in the relationship with Bube for 7 years on announcing her pregnancy is told by Bube,

“It’s unfortunate the time is not right for me… We have to do the right thing.”

The right thing for Bube means an abortion. Weyinmi has already had 5 abortions and does not want to have another, but feeling that she has no alternative she appeases bube by going ahead with a 6th abortion. The question has to be asked, what man is going to respect want to marry a woman that can be persuaded by a man to abort 6 times against her will? This is the same kind of woman that will let her children be abused by a man or adopt out her children on a man’s say so.

Everybody has different breaking points and Weyinmi reaches hers when Bube gets another woman pregnant and plans on marrying her. It is at the end of part one when she finds the hidden wedding invited in their room that she crumbles and realises that her whole life with Bube has been a lie.

Family pressure comes into yet another situation in that Bube’s mother tells Omoze that he must marry this girl as he cannot jeopardise their long standing family relationship with the girl’s parents.

We also see that a man will stay with the “wrong” woman indefinitely without the commitment of marriage. He will string her along, but at the same time will marry the “right” woman on a whim. Bube is ready to accept the other girl’s pregnancy but threatened Omoze that if she kept the baby he would have nothing to do with them both. Uselessness.
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In the end the women get revenge for all the games their men have played with them. Weyinmi orchestrates the kidnapping of Bube on the day of his wedding to the other woman. She takes him to a warehouse, taunts him and threatens to cut off his manhood. Femi loses not only his job but his house too when Omoze somehow transfers the deeds to the house into solely her name effectively making him homeless.

The way that Tayo’s story ends has the best twist in the entire movie. I did not see it coming at all… completely unpredictable. Osita begins an affair with a pretty young thang. His behaviour towards his wife becomes even more disgisting as he flaunts his mistress in public, not caring whether his wife is around or not. The PYT seduces him in his office, stripping him and then leaving him in the bathroom, telling him that she is going to fetch condoms.

His bosses find him in the buff and he is disgraced in front of the whole committee. He is sacked and goes home from worked distressed and angered. His anger is only to be exacerbated when he finds out that the PYT called Nira is in fact his wife’s cousin. This is my most favourite scene in the movie. Tayo regains her power and when Osita makes the move to attack her; for once she fights back. Tayo and Nira give him a good beating. It is a triumphant moment.

Chelsea’s relationship with Edwin has been consistent throughout the movie. He is heralded as the perfect man. He is handsome, romantic, thoughtful, caring and the couple appear to be happy. In the end we see Rita catching him in bed with Steven (the white guy from Osita’s office). When caught by Chelsea tells her, “This isn’t what it seems.” But seriously what else can it be? Dude is having homosexual relationships. It just goes to show that you never know what lies beneath the façade of perfection. The guy that appeared to be the most virtuous gave us the biggest shock in terms of behaviour.
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I love this movie… However there must always be criticisms (well most times anyway). I feel that putting in the random white guy, Steven was a mistake. He cannot act to save his life, so why was he there? He was very wooden and unconvincing, and made me cringe. I also felt that the movie would have benefitted from perhaps erasing the narrator. The whole talk show storyline was not needed. Uche was unnecessary and didn’t fit the role of a talk show host. Mona Lisa’s two second appearance as the original talk show host approving the new talk show host was pointless too. Maybe she didn’t want to be in the film but just wanted her face on screen momentarily, or perhaps she was originally involved more but those scenes were done away with. Who knows?

The end scenes based in the TV studios were a disappointment and anticlimax. Although the individual stories were wrapped up neatly in terms of letting the viewer know how each woman was doing after the break ups, the execution was messy. We had all the women come onto the TV show and give their story. This was a bit boring and slow. The same stories could have been told in a fraction of the time.

Overall it was a stellar effort from all those involved (bar the Steve character). It was paced well, gripping and on the whole wonderfully executed. The scenes flow well and it ends satisfactorily, in terms of there are no gaping holes and unanswered questions as is so often the case. You feel satisfied as the viewer, and even though the dancing at the end was kind of weird and didn’t necessarily fit in, you feel so good after watching this movie that you want to go and find a pink suit and join in the dancing too!

Return to Me

Return to Me

Originally uploaded by NollywoodForever

Return to Me (2007)
Director – Iyke Odife

Starring:
Nonso Diobi – Ikenna
Mona Lisa Chinda – Judith
Patience Ozokwor – Judith’s Mother
Helen Ohameze – Uju
Steve Dube – Anaobi
Chika Ihekwabu – Monica
Ikem Chude

Themes Explored:
Long distance relationship
Economic Migration

My Rating: 45%

Ikenna and Judith live in the same village and are childhood sweethearts. They are split up physically for the first time when Ikenna follows Judith’s aunt to Lagos to go and make some money. Judith’s mother is happy that he has gone as she has a long standing feud with his mother. In his absence she tries to put her daughter off Ikennaby telling her that she has been abandoned and trying to encourage her to see other men. In one scene Judith is outside crying over Ikenna’s absence and her mother comes outside and says to her,

“You will not eat. You are outside crying… you need flesh for the suitors that are coming.”

I am assuming that this line was in the script before casting and not amended to fit Chinda. How would someone that is built like a brick house “need flesh”? That line made me laugh.

After not making enough money in Lagos Ikenna returns to the village to tell his sweetheart that he’ll be travelling abroad on business for a few months. They have an emotional reunion and Judith is distraught. Matters are not helped by her mother who declares Ikenna banished from their compound, as he has left behind no money to support her daughter.

 
Overall this film was just boring and dragged on too much. All the crying and flashbacks over being separated was long winded and turned into overkill. Chinda and Diobi had no chemistry in the romantic sense. She acted more like a mother than a girlfriend and they just didn’t look right together, the end was disappointing and there is a Part 3 that I didn’t watch, maybe that rounded off the story…

 

Basket Mouth

Basket Mouth

Originally uploaded by NollywoodForever


Basket Mouth

Story/ Screenplay – Bob Emmanuel Anosike

Director – Stanley Williams Inyang

 

 

Starring:

John Okafor – Ukami

Moses Armstrong – Big Fredo

Mona Lisa Chinda – Sylvia

Felix Noah – Bob

Jane Ugbe – Mama

McDonald Oti – Simon

Aisha Balogun – Princess

Clems Onyeka – Jude

Jennifer Uzom – Lucy

Justina Robert – Madame Sige

Nora Ugo – Cynthia

 

Themes Explored:

Greed

Materialism

“Saving Face”

 

My Rating: 72%

 

Fred has delusions of grandeur and has taken to calling himself “Big Fredo.” The only thing big about Fred are his lies. Fredo uses a story about having come from the city and having a container lost on the high seas to seduce many many girls in the village. He promises them that when his container arrives he will bath them in riches and amazingly they pretty much all fall for it.

 

Although it is a comedy there are some serious underlying themes. The main ones being greed, materialism and “saving face.” The whole reason Big Fredo comes out with the elaborate story that he is a rich businessman from the city is to “save face” to his family and friends. He knows how the people in his community operate and that for him to come back to the village without material wealth he would be seen as a failure. It is for this reason that he invents the stories that he does.

 

He knows that the girls that he meets would not pay any attention to him without him pretending to be rich, and so sees telling lies as the only way to create the person that he wants to be. We see that the girls do in fact only talk to men that they believe to be rich, even when evidence on the contrary presence itself. Big Fredo takes one girl out and can only afford Fanta to drink and no food but despite this it is the fact that he keeps on telling her that she will soon be showered with riches that keeps her hanging on.

 

This one is a comedy and is full of laughs. It teaches us to associate ourselves with people due to the content of character rather than what they own. I’d recommend it!