We can blame coronavirus for the way the theatrical window keeps shrinking, and the high flux of Nollywood movies towards streaming platforms like Netflix. The streamer’s Nollywood library has expanded more than ever, bringing in old titles and fairly new ones to as many eyeballs as possible. It’s becoming fashionable to watch Nollywood (and whinge about how some movies are terrible and don’t make sense). For the month of July, we sift through the churn
1. Sugar Rush
Jade Osiberu’s Sugar Rush prides itself in its sheer star power, from Toke Makinwa, Bisola Aiyeola to Omoni Oboli and Tobi Bakare. The film’s comic infrastructure is continuing from Osidberu’s hit romcom Isoken, and follows three sisters who discover $80,000 and try to get away from law enforcement and villains who lay claim to the money. Remember how its cinema run was temporarily halted by the NFVCB for misrepresenting anti-corruption apparatus EFCC? It’s a popcorn filler especially when you watch with no expectations. Sugar Rush isn’t diabetically sweet, you will survive. Out on Netflix July 3.
2. The Royal Hibiscus Hotel
The Royal Hibiscus Hotel first landed on streaming terrain with Amazon Prime Video in 2018. Directed by Ishaya Bako, known for works like Road to Yesterday and the highly controversial documentary Fuelling Poverty, TRHH stars Zainab Balogun as a chef, following her dreams of establishing an African restaurant in London. Frustrated by her lack of progress, she returns to Nigeria and discovers that going home can bring pleasant surprises. Also starring are Kenneth Okolie, who plays her romantic interest, Deyemi Okanlawon, Kemi ‘Lala’ Akindoju, O.C. Ukeje, Rachel Oniga and Jide Kosoko.
3. The Perfect Picture: Ten Years Later
A Ghana-Nolly drama, The Perfect Picture: Ten Years Later is a sequel directed by Ghanaian actress Shirley Frimpong-Manso. The Picture Perfect (2009) was about three women pushing their thirties and making bold attempts to change their lives even when destiny plays its jokes on them.
In the sequel, which arrives Netflix this Friday, the women are back, edging towards their forties and their lives haven’t lost a spark since tens years ago. Now, the women are older and wiser and saddled with more issues in their not-so-fairy-tale relationships. It’s a roller coaster ride of imperfect husbands, repentant ex-boyfriends, financial woes and sexual liberation.
Directed by Oluseyi Asurf Amuwa, Kasanova is a romantic comedy starring Ireti Doyle and Wale Ojo as lovers, and got released September 2019. Kasanova also stars Ayo Makun, Helen Paul, Toyin Abraham and Odunlade Adekola. Doyle and Ojo both put in brilliant, believable performances as the movie’s romantic core. Actually, watch it you are a sucker for romcoms.