The trailer for Imoh Umoren’s soon-to-be released thriller Club ends disastrously, thanks to Nancy Isime’s bungling, cliché-ridden attempt at sidestepping clichés. She’s in a club awash with moody red lights, wearing a leather black jacket and her pixie haircut is scarlet. She’s steadily holding a gun at her male adversary and says, to our collective horror, “Really? You bring a knife to a gunfight? That is so clicheeeeeeeeeee.”
She sounds really smug, which makes the scene so funny but hard to stomach. Hard to stomach because as much as we want to laugh with her, we end up laughing at her. We don’t know what to make of Nancy’s character; Umoren has been tight-lipped about the film’s synopsis, but our gun-wielding protagonist ticks the boxes of an assassin. It’s lofty, isn’t it? In the beginning of the trailer, she is shown driving away from a place after murdering a man. In another scene, she stands and watches a man being doused with fuel and set ablaze. She’s seemingly badass, but we aren’t provided with background details about her and so we don’t care. Who is she? Where did she come? Why is a gun her choice of weapon? Does she also have a pepper spray in her back pocket in case she runs out of bullets?
The trailer is a bizarre and puzzling cluster of decisions that rapidly coalesce into a glorious mess. More to the point, it isn’t narratively cohesive to bolster the film’s purported noirish mood. There’s a dead, blood-splattered female body and night club debauchery, and a slightly distressed Gideon Okeke rambling something I can’t remember. Our assassin, or whatever, is a faux, schlocky imitation of…hmm…let me see…could it be Charlize Theron in Atomic Blonde?
Taken together, Club’s trailer terribly fails to impress, despite having a female lead. The thriller (what else can I call it, eh?) parades a cast of Saidi Balogun, Kelechi Udegbe, Baaj Adebule, Nonso Kalango and Marvis Nkpornwi, and slated for a cinema release on June 1. Imoh talks a big game, so we’ll give him the benefit of the doubt, but this trailer ehn…
Watch the trailer below.