By Morris Abdul Newton
Dir: Thomas Odia
Starring: Tana Adelana, Mercy Johnson-Okojie, Mercy Aigbe, Lilian Esoro, Frederick Leonard, Femi Jacobs, Jide Kosoko, Chioma Omeruah Chigurl, Somto Cody, Steve Onu.
Wow! This was meant to be quite easy. Now wondering if producers, directors even view their movies after the editor’s cut. Who is to be held responsible for making us pay money to watch some of these travesties? Watching this movie just made me continue asking, ‘What-is-this?!’
Now, this is as complicated as this gets: Four friends – Lola, Tosin, Amaka and Ufoma – from high school reunite after a long time to plan the 50th anniversary of their alma mater. The battle for superiority and this stirs up issues from the past as secrets are revealed that threaten to tear up their seemingly perfect lives.
This Faith Ojo produced movie literally attempted to do some of what the last line of its synopsis suggested. It doesn’t just threaten; it also attempts to destroy every shred of perfection that could have been attained by any actor on parade. This is one of the most disjointed movies I have ever seen.
We could say this story is about Lola (Tana Adelana) – the event planner, Ufuoma (Lilian Esoro) – The Advert agent and over labored one, Amaka (Mercy Johnson) – The boutique owner and philandering one and finally, Tosin (Mercy Aigbe) – The socialite and Philanthropist and their interactions over planning an event. But then, I don’t really know as everything concerning this idea was really all over the place.
‘The Reunion’ had no depth, no rhythm, no pace, no arrangement… nothing. Probably just an annoying, disheveled piece of anything other than a movie. The Editor did a horrible job of arranging scenes that didn’t appropriately follow each other. I really couldn’t understand how the scenes were laid so bad. In one scene there was a deep, dastardly revelation by Ufoma concerning Tosin’s hubby which rocks the ladies and their friendship and the next morning they are all fraternizing amongst themselves like nothing happened. Ufoma and Tosin gisting like she didn’t just spill the beans on her husband the previous night. Seriously? The worst part was how the scene after this one was Tosin confronting her husband. Gibberish editing.
The acting was an eyesore for most of the actors as they drifted in and out of character. I blame some of this on the writing of the movie. It is utterly weird that a character can go from sane to insane and then back to sane the way some of these characters did. Certainly, there was really no proper character definition and this usually starts with the writer. The pair of Femi Jacobs and Lilian Esoro as husband and wife were good examples of this. So much character gymnastics all through that got us believing that they were never normal even till the end of the movie. None of it was really believable.
Tana Adelana’s character as Lola didn’t do too badly but her story, which is the supposed pivot material was lost in the slew gibberish on offer. I’m sorry, but the overall drabness ruined the fun we could have had with that story that didn’t even live up to it’s potential anyway.
Why filmmakers in Nollywood still don’t get that not all characters actually speak English in reality, worries me. Mercy Aigbe as Tosin Olowookere came through as the usual Mercy Aigbe that struggles to speak English Language. Well, she tries. We can see the struggle but then why give her too many English lines? She unnecessarily grates as she struggles to speak the language.
Remembering the Tosin character reminds me of a scene where she was drunk and her husband (Jide Kosoko) came in. Her vision was blurry when he came in, but all of a sudden she became all coherent as she got into an argument with him. And then after they were done, she was all trembling like a leaf in rain. Are you kidding me? Mr. Director, what did you do there?
I didn’t like the pictures or camera directions for most times in this movie. Those, the sound and the music managed to do my head in quite a few times.
The orphanage scene almost made hot tears take a stroll from destination eyes to my cheek. I’m sure those kids felt embarrassed. Particularly the one that had to ask if Tosin was an Angel. What sort of stupid, irrelevance was this?
Before they even slewed into climaxing the stories of the four ladies, there was a scene where Amaka spilled and made a mockery of her abuser which is just a shabby arrangement in story too. The problem is now that, after this scene, there was no reference to the husbands of these women actually knowing that anything as such had happened. Really? The women planned a get back at a molester and none of the husbands knew what went down.
This movie actually does make no sense. Almost.