Entertainment

“A Tribe Called Judah”, takes a jibe at moral, social paralysis of society

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“A Tribe Called Judah” is a block-buster film produced in 2023 by Funke Akindele and directed by Funke Akindele and Adeoluwa Owu, which has acquired its place among the best films of last year.

The movie tells the story of a single mother, Jedidah Judah (played by Funke Akindele), who has five sons from five different fathers from five different tribes. The first two sons are responsible and try their best to work and support their mother. Meanwhile, the last three are less helpful: Pere (played by Timini Egbuson) is a chronic pickpocket; Shina (played by Tobi Makinde), is a hoodlum and tout in the community; and the last, Ejiro (played by Olumide Oworu), is naughty and only cares about his girlfriend, Testimony (played by Genoveva Umeh). Despite their bad behaviour, Jedidah continues to support them and get them out of trouble.

Things take a turn for the worse, when Jedidah develops a chronic kidney disease, needing ₦18 million to fund her operation and ₦400,000 weekly for her dialysis. The first son, Emeka, loses his job, and the five sons see no other option than to rob Emeka’s ex-boss, who is rumoured to be a money launderer, to get the money to save their mother’s life.
However, their plans take a dramatic turn, when they encounter armed robbers at the scene. The movie was released to cinemas nationwide on December 15, 2023, and became the first Nollywood movie to hit N1 billion at the box office.

The movie seamlessly blends family dynamics, drama, and comedy with a touch of Nigerian realism, making audience to blend and identify with the motifs of the riveting drama, sizzling, and pathos-inspiring.

The plot is believable, realistic and the character portrayal reflects everyday people we find in a depressing economy.
There is no dull moment as every move counts, the speech and language of the cast captures urban idioms we are all familiar with, as the movie takes its audience on a journey through the intricate dynamics of a Nigerian family, skillfully blending elements of drama, comedy, and a touch of suspense.

The strong point of the movie lies in its storytelling, efficiently introducing the central characters and themes in the first act. The narrative of a single mother and her problematic yet relatable children adds a touch of universal values, especially, that of a mother’s love.

As the storyline develops, the plot is propelled by the looming adversity of Jedidah’s illness, which catalyses the family’s unity. Despite occasional melodrama, the story’s ability to create and resolve conflicts, introducing more complex challenges, keeps the plot engaging.

The chemistry among the diverse ensemble cast contributes significantly to the film’s authenticity. The brotherhood and unity in diversity resonate with Nigerian society; perhaps the movie portrays Nigerian multiethnic structure and the need for unity. The film boasts impressive visuals that capture the essence of Nigerian landscapes and settings, depicting the condition of the life of the characters.

In this movie, there are moments of laughter, sadness and action. The movie offers a sense of justification for the character from the audience: the feeling that each character deserved what he or she got. Most intriguingly, you might think you could predict the following action in the movie, but ‘A Tribe Called Judah’ would be a palatable surprise.

The movie follows a linear and enjoyable pathway as opposed to the convoluted story development in her earlier releases. The actors are also pleasurable to watch, and Ejiro and Testimony’s intentionality and dedication to each other are entertainingly delivered. Other actors bring commendable performances to the film and make for a thrilling cinematic experience.

A Tribe Called Judah is a worthwhile film, and its tardy moments make it all the more rewarding. Akindele has a dominating presence in her films and can infiltrate these productions with her identity, with productions often centring around everyday household situations. And this recent production is an indication of the growth in the handling of her creative output. Hence, for families and individuals hoping to have a great time during the holiday period, Akindele’s film is deserving of the time and money.

The economy of the movie is impressive and reflects the growing maturity and development of Nollywood as a big business.
Producers and marketers have discovered the magic of big business, which Nollywood offers, and such possibility keeps expanding. The movie is a box office heat.

In recent years, the movie industry has grown in leaps and bounds, churning out big budget movies . Apart from Akindele’s we have seen ” The Gang of Lagos ” and ” Beast of Two World” produced by Eniola Ajao and released into a hale of controversy following its premiere, where the award of Best Dressed Female was given to a popular cross dresser, Idris Okuneye, known as Bobrisky.

The award reawakened interest in the controversial life of the cross dresser as immediately the afterward the Economic and Financial Crime Commission, EFCC reopened his case file and got him arraigned at a Magistrates court, which last week handed him six months jail term.

Many believe what was meant to be a publicity stunt to attract attention and awaken interest in the movie may finally be its ultimate albatross.

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