The Film Blog: Why we must all join hands to reject and condemn Mike Ezuruonye’s ‘Brother Jekwu’

Mike Ezuruonye’s movie ‘Brother Jekwu’ is bad.

 

Look, we know there are those of you so traumatised by Nigeria’s utter lack of standards that you believe saying something is bad is not

‘constructive’.

 

We know there are those who believe these things should be said with ‘nice words’’. They miss the point.

 

Constructive criticism is not a synoynym for gentle criticism. And sometimes, criticism need be harsh and untempered – as its own end,

and then to force the creator to pay attention when it counts.

 

And Ezeuruonye needs to pay attention.

 

It’s as if he hasn’t paid attention to the massive developments in Nigerian filmmaking – storytelling and filming – over the past, what…

five years?

 

He just takes the old, worn, unimaginative Nollywood template and translates it into the big screen.

 

And the picture is ugly.

 

This is why this must be said: Misnomers like Brother Jekwu are the films that make it so difficult for well made Nigerian experiments

like The Arbitration, Oloibiri or 93 Days to get a proper first look by audiences absent of comedy or strategic marketing budgets.

 

When people see nonsense like this they tag it ‘these Nollywood films’ and it re-enforces the bad habit of looking cool by dismissing our own movies.

 

This was a selfish, pointless, offensive exercise.

 

And by punishing audiences with this drivel, Ezuruonye and his cohorts make it very hard for serious filmmakers to earn their keep, to grow their craft, and to build an industry that we can truly be proud of.

 

Enough is truly enough. Let’s shame these terrible efforts out of our well-meaning cinemas.

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