Mokalik is the most recent brainchild of Kunle Afolayan. It is a comedy-drama about an eleven-year-old boy whose father dropped off at a mechanic workshop as an apprentice. The father hopes to scare the son into concentrating on his studies.

This movie sheds light on the unconventional method of learning which is usually ascribed to vocational skills. It has a unique storyline with lots of lessons to learn. It was directed by none other than Kunle himself. 

Kunle Afolayan is one of the sons of the very popular Adeyemi Afolayan (Ade Love), a man considered to be one of the pioneers of the Nollywood industry.

Like his father, Kunle has ushered in a new era and has evidently changed the course of movie-making. His successes in the industry have not only inspired but challenged many others to do better. His past movies “The figurine” and “October 1st” are widely acclaimed and award-winning movies.

It is, however, surprising that Mokalik doesn’t seem to meet up to the usual Kunle Afolayan standard. The movie had some errors Kunle had successfully avoided in his previous productions. 

Here is a quick look at the weaknesses and strengths of the production.

Mokalik
Mokalik

WEAKNESSES

Story and Plot

Although Mokalik has a good story, it lacks certain elements that would have made it a masterpiece. It is slow-paced and its failure to give extensive back-story may have made it worse.

The first few minutes of the movie are not engaging and the audience is left to wonder what the point of the movie could be. In addition, It had some unnecessary events and dialogues that dragged out the movie. Simply put, it was boring.

Cinematography and editing

Kunle had stated in an interview he experimented with a new camera for the production of the movie. This makes one wonder if it is any reason for the poor cinematography. Some of the shots taken were shaky due to the constant movement of the camera while some were out of focus.

The editing was not any better, it was mediocre. The cuts and transition seemed to only do justice to depicting the environs but were inadequate during actors’ delivery.

Casting and Acting

The acting of some actors was sub-par. One of such actors is Damilola Ogunsi who played Obama, a character who smuggled himself into the US during Obama’s tenure but got deported after Trump assumed office.

Damilola’s excessiveness was almost unbearable to watch but his overacting is preferable to the acting of Tooni Afolayan. Tooni played the role of the main character and it was abysmal. His acting was robotic and his line delivery was terrible. Being the main character, this really put a damper on the production. 

STRENGTHS

Casting and Acting

Kunle is known to do his casting himself and he got it right for the most part. The cast of Mokalik had included Fathia Balogun, Razaq Olayiwola, Lateef Adedjimeji, Simi Ogunleye, to mention a few.

Simi Ogunleye is the talented songwriter and musician popularly known as Simi and this was her acting debut. She gave a good enough performance that spiced up the movie. She wasn’t exceptional but she did well for a first-timer. Her performance alongside that of the aforementioned actors was quite impressive.

Production Design

Mokalik translates to Mechanic in English so instinctively there should be a lot that points the life of a mechanic in the movie and there was. Also, the characters and happenings within and around the mechanic’s workshop were properly depicted.

The drama, the mischief, the retail stores, the canteen, the graduation ceremony down to the costumes, excessive make-up use, and the chain of command in an environment like that was accurately portrayed.

Automobile (Mokalik) lectures

As expected, there were lots of references and lectures on the different parts of an automobile vehicle and they were fairly accurate. Even though there were mostly generic, these lectures completely serve the required purpose for their inclusion. Also, the simplicity of the analogies and comparison to the parts of the human body was quite educational. 

Good Music

From the start of the movie to the end of the movie, the selection of songs used was appropriate. The songs weren’t too upbeat and they were very complementary to the storytelling. This deserves Kudos because music is very instrumental in telling a good story.

Ending

Mokalik, despite all odds, ends well and one finally realizes the reason for the merry-go-round one had to sit through. It goes without saying that Mokalik isn’t as enjoyable and riveting as the audience had hoped. It does, however, help understand that learning isn’t confined to the four corners of a formal learning institution.

Analyzing closely, the visuals of Mokalik makes it come off more like a documentary than a comedy-drama. All things considered, one can only come to one conclusion; Kunle can definitely do better.

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