By Tope Alake
TITLE: The Figurine
· GENRE: Thriller Drama
· DIRECTOR: Kunle Afolayan
· STARRING: Kunle Afolayan, Ramsey Noah, Tosin Sido, Omoni Oboli, Funlola Aofiyebi,
· PRODUCER: Kunle Afolayan
· STORY: Jovi Babs
· SCREEN WRITER: Kemi Adesoye
· CINEMATOGRAPHER: Yinka Edward
· EDITORS: Kayode Adeleke, Steve Sodiya
· RUNNING TIME: 120mins
· BUDGET: N50, million
· GROSS BOX OFFICE RETURNS:
· Estimates not made public*
· DATE OF RELEASE: 2nd October 2009
· LOCATION: Oshogbo, Erin Ijesa water falls Miccom Golf course, Lagos.
· COUNTRY AND LANGUAGE: Nigeria, English and Yoruba
· THE PLOT
· Figurine is the “love triangle” story of Femi (Ramsey Noah) who is deeply (but silently) obsessed with Mona who on the flip side was in love with Shola (Kunle Afolayan) who Femi does not see as capable of loving and taking care of Mona.
· The trio reunited at their NYSC camp at a village called “Araromire”, a village that was named after an evil god that plagued her people with seven years of evil after the seven years of plenty that followed everyone who came in physical contact with her, as she exists in the form of an idol, that was made from the bark of a cursed tree.
· While at the camp, Shola proposed to Mona who was at the time carrying his baby, the news broke Femi’s heart but he made no vocal mention of it. This was after the events that lead Shola and Femi to discover the “Araromire” idol in the forest while on their endurance trek, which Shola stubbornly stole.
· Events that seemed like the 7 years of plenty followed Femi and Shola. Shola was now married to Mona with a son and Femi was doing well as a financial expert abroad. Lots of money to show for a good life, illnesses gone and the good life was what they had, 7 years latter things turned around and what looked like the plagues of “Araromire” began to befall the two young men; but things grew worse after what seemed the source was indestructible.
· A step was made to return “Araromire” to its source, that was where the real “Araromire” showed itself (metaphorical) and one revelation lead to the other, eventually the truth was revealed, and we saw that love never dies. I think!
· When I first walked into the Genesis Deluxe Cinemas to see Figurine (Araromire) at the premier on the 2nd October 2009, I knew I was in for a show of my life, maybe because the film was released when Nigeria was beginning to see the emergence of the “NEW NOLLYWOOD” and I was so interested in any film that the new movement was bringing. Figurine did not let me down.
. The story was done really nicely, the Cultural relevance was not lost in any way, and neither did it lose anything to make it foreign.
· I really love the screen play, Kemi that was a good one. I think the characters were nicely built; I like the fact that Femi did not speak much, even though he had really deep intentions. I like the fact that Shola always chewed gum and was frivolous with his speech, and actually came very late to the NYSC camp. My best character would be Linda! I like the build of her character, her jokes where real, and I think the actress killed it.
· I would also like to drop some kudos for whoever did the set design, that was cool, every prop that appeared on set was necessary in pushing the story forward.
· I really love the sound track, (Araromire) I think that was done well, it kept me watching, actually it’s my current ring tone now.it was not like all them “Old Nollywood” sound tracks that literally narrates the story in the music score. Arrrrrgggggggg!
· The part of the movie that got me the most was the pictures, (style, not quality) I love the Cinematography. Some of the shots where nicely composed or tracked or they just had something creative about them. I also love the arrival shot to Araromire village, having the sign post in frame was a great one
· Waoo, see me ranting about the nice things in the movie as though God himself shot it, I’ll take a minute and talk about a few things that did not work for me.
· I also do not get the part where everyone was posted to Araromire (a village) I thought in Nigeria “corper” get posted to states and not villages for NYSC, until when they are assigned to places of primary assignments before they probably end up in villages.
· I don’t know what was wrong with most of the sound of the scenes at the Fajure’s beach house, but I think there was too much of generator noise in the background, it was (at some point) overwhelming. The lights in those scenes were too dark, not interpretative, mood almost never worked and bad choice of shooting time. Was wondering why most of those scenes were shot at night when the story still could stand if it was set during the day because the dark pictures almost ruined it. Hey! We struggled to see the box that fell open when Lara was pushed out, we almost missed seeing the other Figurines that fell out of the bags, (which was the real story).
· COMPONENT GRADE
· PLOT AND CONTINUITY: 69% CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT AND ACTING: 75% MUSIC AND SINGING: 68% DIRECTING AND EDITING: 69% CINEMATOGRAPHY AND SPECIAL EFFECTS: 78%
· CRITICAL GRADE: 71.8%
FINAL GRADE: B-