By Morris Abdul Newton
Dir: Kayode Kasum
Starring: Nancy Isime, Jide Kene Achufusi (Swanky JKA), Mawuli Gavor, Elvina Ibru, Venita Akpofure, Uzor Arukwe, Koye Kekere-Ekun, Sharoon Ooja and Toyin Abraham – 119minutes
Romantic comedies work in different ways and in a way too. We seem to know the formula and sort of expect it, but we still watch them. In truth, finding one that works quite well can be a chore sometimes since we sort of know what to expect. Kambili is not so different but…
In Kambili, the title character, Kambili Maduka (Nancy Isime) is an irresponsible 28 year old young lady turning 29. Her aim is to get hitched to the man of her dreams before her 30th birthday. However, she is indeed tardy, unserious and a spendthrift. She gets suspended from work for arriving late over and over again for whatever reasons she finds to conjure per time.
Finally, when her boyfriend, John (Mawuli Gavor) leaves her because he doesn’t deem her focused enough to be a proper wife material, she embarks on a plan to convince him that she is focused, driven and indeed wife material.
]She first tries to convince her bestfriend, Chidi (Swanky JKA) of her plans and that doesn’t really work. Then she makes her case with her other close friend, Biodun (Venita Akpofure) and her husband, Jessie (Koye Kekere-Ekun) whom she brings into the picture.
Kambili’s quest and her dependence on Chidi affects his own romantic relationship with his girlfriend played by Sharon Ooja. It also causes a strain between her and her mother (Elvina Ibru) after she finds that her mother is now engaged to a younger man, Bankole (Uzor Arukwe).
This Kayode Kasum product is slow and tedious at the start but gradually picks up as it moves on. The story is predictable but yet endearing and enjoyable.
Nancy Isime in the role of Kambili was fun to watch as she embodied the role. Her accent fluctuated at some points, but that was about it for her playing the role. Any other thing would have to do with the character she was given to work with. The characters didn’t have back stories which left it a bit difficult to know who these people really were. Having such on this kind of generic trope leaves us with shallowness that we don’t desire.
By the way, the filmmakers had to go the way of embarrassing our dear Nollywood again with that line, “Stop this Nollywood film thing you are doing. Stop being dramatic.” Here is Nollywood with its penchant to poke fun at itself. Hilarious.
Cinematography was alright aside for a bit of shaky camera movements at some parts. The editing was exciting to look at. I enjoyed what the editor did with this picture.
There were also some continuity issues. For instance there was no ring on Kambili’s finger after she had been proposed to by John and had gotten back to work. She had that altercation with Jessica at the reception area but the ring was nowhere to be found.
The sweet thing about Kambili is how she reminds a lot of people of atleast one thing about somebody they know. The movie is quite relatable on that front.
As per the third act of the film, the turnaround was probably a bit too sharp and could have done with a slower build up. Like I said earlier, the film was predictable. You could literally tell what will suffice at the end of this movie but one thing is for sure, it was a nice and endearing love story. Hey! And what was that attempt at a joke between the love.
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