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Diary Of a Lagos Girl? (Here's What I Think...)




I guess a new and effective marketing strategy is to put up a sponsored post on a popular blog then have your people flood its comment section and praise the product. I have no evidence of this but that must have been what had happened with The Diary of a Lagos Girl post on Bella Naija. I never intended to watch the movie, at least not pay to see it at the cinema. Yet some comments had me rearranging my entire plans for the day, cancelling and rescheduling and ultimately heading to The Palms Lekki for a movie date with myself and this Lagos girl that had got people talking. 

I payed for my tickets, and although it was past 6pm, I said diet be damned! This is going to be a juicy one so today is cheat day. I proceeded to the snack counter to grab popcorn and a soda. I bounced into the movie hall with a spring in my step, I was pumped up with anticipation!

Five minutes into the movie, my high began to ebb away. Thirty minutes in, I was shuffling my feet restlessly. Forty five minutes and the chic behind me muttered "What kind of rubbish movie is this?"  One hour in and several seats seemed to have lost their occupants. Fifteen minutes later mine lost its too. 

I was trying to decide if the movie wasn't so bad, maybe it just wasn't my cup of tea. But as I got to the door I saw two gentlemen chatting to each other. When they saw me emerge from the door one came to me and said "The movie is whack, yeah?". This he said rhetorically. To which I responded "Azzzzzzzzzn". "Bloody waste of my time" he spat. And for a millisecond he and I stood, strangers yet kindred spirits bonding over wasted money/fuel/time. 

Let me put this in context lest it seem I rant amiss. These are the reasons I was so put off by this movie. 

I know Nollywood sometimes seems cursed with an ineptitude for brilliant scripts that stun, excite or surprise. But if there ever was an award for Most Predictable Movie in Nigerian History, DOLG wins hands down, no contest! Ten minutes into the movie and you already know how it's going to end. 

By now you must have figured that my main grouse is that I found the movie to be too predictable. Yes, but that's not all. Like I just said, most Nollywood movies have an affinity for predictability. However most scriptwriters are creative enough to make you not mind that so much. That was absent here. I constantly found myself wondering if this was written by a teenager as a literature assignment...

The plot (if there was one), storyline and dialogue were rather weak and awkward. 

Speaking of dialogue, I nearly gagged at the use of overused clichés. Tautology, I know but that's just how bad it was. What's with the use of tired lines like "I'd rather cry in a Range Rover bla bla bla" and "Warri no dey carry last (but in lagos it's all about carrying first)"?

The directing and video quality also left a lot wanting. 

The movie in its entirety seemed like the rehearsal before the dress rehearsal. 

I understand that the movie was intended to be light and fluffy romcom stuff but that's no excuse whatsoever for the inferior piece of production, especially if you've flooded it with A listers.  

The cast all seemed uncomfortable and very aware that they were acting a movie, and some of these are otherwise very talented actors. 

Linda Ejiofor was entertaining as she usually is but her performance was unusually off and uneasy to watch. 

Alex Ekubo was just BLAND. I loved him in The First Lady and I was hoping that movie was the start of great things in his acting, but it turns out that might have been a one off. 

OC Okeje... This is one actor who has always confused me. Ok, he hasn't confused me, his fans have. I tried, and failed to see what all the hype is about. Here, he was simply ok, as usual. 

Adunni Ade got me wondering. Truth be told, most characters in the movie were poorly developed. However I loved the way her lines were peppered with yoruba, it added some spice. 

Dolapo Oni had me nodding in approval. For a fledgling actor she actually did a very decent job. Unfortunately I didn't really understand her character. If she didn't do runs, didn't seem to have a fantastic job, didn't come from money, didn't have a car then I don't understand how she could have afforded that all-authentic-designer wardrobe. But that's okay I guess. Her acting was fine, she showed some range and versatility. 

Truth be told, Diary of a Lagos Girl left so much wanting. While it was not a boring movie, it was very predictable, terribly executed and poorly scripted. (My eyes keeping smarting at the memory of the wedding scene, where wife and husband seemed like madam and driver. And the bride and bridesmaids seemed to belong to two different weddings). 
      It was easy to see that most of us came there with great expectations. It was even easier to see excitement deflate as people began to leave one after the other. The ones who stayed behind began to chat about other things and the others didn't even mind the noise. 

I appreciate whatever effort went into making this movie but I hope next time the producers would invest more in making quality productions, and realize that it doesn't matter the number of stars you throw into a movie, a bad movie is a bad movie. 

So that's my rant. Its not meant as a critique of the movie, or as a tool of dissuasion for those yet to see it. But merely an expression of my discontent. 
    ...Maybe I wouldn't be so irate if I hadn't paid to watch it. Maybe there's something to be said for those people who say they can never go and pay to watch a Nollywood movie at the cinema (I think they're wrong by the way). But should anyone involved in that project get to read this, I hope that even if they find it offensive, it spurs them to do better next time. After all there's always room for improvement in life. 



I might have been off the mark in my first paragraph and the comments of ebullient praise I referred to might be from fans who genuinely loved and enjoyed the movie. Have you seen Diary Of a Lagos Girl? Please share your thoughts. 



Comments

  1. I'm one of those people that will hardly pay to watch a Nollywood movie in a cinema,( Ije was the exception). I also don't pay to watch just any Hollywood movie. If the reviews are not great i'll rather just buy a cup of coldstone icecream.

    I recently watched 30 days in Atlanta (someone gave me the CD) jeez, I didn't believe that crap won awards. They need to up their game jor. I hate the fact I have to reduce my IQ to be in tune with what they churn out. Like you said,a movie where a girl is supposedly not making much money but will be rocking designer stuff???? J

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thelma,dat movie is a flop,wasted my time and energy.. was so disappointed,no quality.. imagine wen Adunni Ade was bou wedding,did u see her outfit? Then at d beginning d way d wedding reception was? I blame myself tho fr watching dat.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Thelma,dat movie is a flop,wasted my time and energy.. was so disappointed,no quality.. imagine wen Adunni Ade was bou wedding,did u see her outfit? Then at d beginning d way d wedding reception was? I blame myself tho fr watching dat.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Thelma,dat movie is a flop,wasted my time and energy.. was so disappointed,no quality.. imagine wen Adunni Ade was bou wedding,did u see her outfit? Then at d beginning d way d wedding reception was? I blame myself tho fr watching dat.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Thank you for saving me the stress and money...lol

    I already made up my mind, there's no way I'm paying to go and see a Nigerian movie at the cinema anymore unless its from Omoni Oboli or Rita Dominic(until they disappoint me). The good thing about foreign movies is that there are a lot of review sites that you can visit to see how good/bad a movie is, these reviews determine whether or not I will go see it but its not the same for us here.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Something about the movie poster (that's what its called abi) just told me the movie would be wack. First time I saw it, I just said hmmm oc ukeje, allexx ekubo and dolapo? Naaa. The moment I saw it here even before reading your review, I had same feeling. Thank God you proved my guts right. All these new Bollywood, some are hits while some are huge misses.

    ReplyDelete
  7. A lot of Nigerian movies are vapid! Outside of good production for a few, nothing else to look forward to. Many times as with many things when folks get paid to push a product - objectivity goes out the window.

    www.pynk360.com

    ReplyDelete
  8. Thelma I totally disagree with you esp on the storyline. Funny how you came extolling the No storyline movie Fifty and putting down the Movie that gets you thinking a bit. Perhaps you are a little irritated cos you can relate to the story. I only agree with you on the production aspect... the lighting in some of the scenes was poor. It wasn't as predictable as you are claiming at least till like the middle of the movie and it's a good predictable in my opinion because you know this is going to end this way but you can't guess how they intend to pull it off in the next scene till you see it. The wedding scene you talked of... like I said before.. poor lighting. But in all its a movie i'd recommend unlike Fifty. I watched the movie the first day it showed at film house, there was plenty of laughter in the cinema, random discussions of the next move and at the end esp the garri scene everyone was 'Ahhhing'.. No one left before the end of the movie and everyone commended the movie... Why I like the movie... there were messages here n there, apart from involving God in one's doings, minding one's company was a major message for me.. one doesn't have to be a people pleaser.., something about idols struck me too, messages if you really watched the movie. about the not doing runs, and being able to afford designer bags n all, Thelma it was well established in the movie that she was working in a good firm n she bought some on credit to meet up.. You are entitled to your opinion but whenever I watch a movie I should be able to learn something, if I can't then that movie is pointless... I can't tell you one thing I learnt from Fifty except the fashion aspect... pls tell us what you learnt from FIFTY. BVs Pls see the movie.. it's nice. @Kabuoy- you can see this one with your parents but I must warn you there'll be talks about it you may not be comfortable with afterwards esp if you are single.....lol

    ReplyDelete
  9. Hi Thelma, hope producers don't pay you to hype some movies and also pay you to rubbish some movies cos your take on this movie being disappointing is so exaggerated. Yes, the movie had some production flaws but the storyline and execution was very good. In my opinion Diary of a Lagos Girl is a very good movie, I enjoyed it, no one walked out of Gdc cinema when we were watching and I presume everyone loved it from the laughs to the smiles on people's faces. Thelma when reviewing, pls be constructive.

    ReplyDelete

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