Omo Ghetto: The saga is a sequel to the 2010 Omo ghetto movie produced by Funke Akindele. This 2020 movie was released on Christmas day, and it was like a consolation for the crazy year. Despite the pandemic that shut down the country, Omo ghetto: The saga has conveniently broken the Nollywood blockbuster records. It is currently the highest-grossing movie in the Nigerian film industry. A month after it was released, it surpassed The Wedding Party grossing up to N468 million. This begs the question; is the movie worth the hype it’s currently receiving? Well, it does.
The movie, which was co-directed by Funke Akindele, who also starred in it as the main actor, is not without flaws. Its strengths, however, outweigh its shortcomings.
OMO GHETTO STRENGTHS
There is no denying that the production quality in Nollywood has improved immensely in recent times. Omo Ghetto takes it to a whole other level. From the intricate details of the production design, to the camera movements, to sound effects of the action sequence and everything that makes a movie production, Omo ghetto nails it. The apparent contrast of the slums and the residential area of influential people were accurately represented.
The choice of the camera shots to the seamless transitions makes the movie an aesthetic bliss. The music department did a great job of picking the right song that brings everything together nicely. For this alone, the movie deserves accolades.
Acting and Consistency
This movie brings back the cast from the original Omo ghetto movie. Funke Akindele is “Lefty”, Eniola Badmus is “Busty”, Bimbo Thomas is “Nikky”, and Adebayo Salami is “Baba Oni Baba”. The new cast members include Deyemi Okanlawon, Tina Mba, Femi Jacobs, Blossom Chukwujekwu, Yemi Alade, and many other A-list actors. It is a typical star-studded movie. The actors brought their A-game, and it was nothing short of amazing. The highlight was the consistency of the characters. It was impressive to watch Funke act two distinct characters without any overlap of their traits. As usual, being a movie with lots of casts, some of the extras’ acting was sub-par but even, so it was pleasing to watch.
Themes and Message
This movie’s central theme is hooliganism; hence, the film details the events surrounding the troublesome and illegal activities of the Nigerian youth. It addresses it such that it does not celebrate, nor does it entirely chastise the illicit activities. Instead, it sheds light on it and reveals the possible consequence that follows. It was a real representation with no attempt to preach, and that is commendable. Aside from this, the other themes that the movie represented include loyalty, friendship, love, compassion, betrayal, conflict, and family.
It was quite touching to see the Askamaya bees were willing to go all the way with Lefty regardless of what they had to do. It was also quite endearing to see Lefty would do anything for those she loves. That kind of love gives hope, and that’s what the audience loves to see.
If comedy was a crime, then Omo Ghetto: The Saga should be proclaimed guilty. Several hilarious moments would have anyone rolling off their seats. While the punchlines were mostly things that would probably only be heard of in the hood, there were still relatable. This movie did well in this area in that not only was the dialogue funny, but the events were too. Some of the funniest moments were just as simple as Busty (Eniola Badmus) being scarce whenever a fight would start.
Progression of the story
The plot of the story progressed naturally. One of the most common issues with Nigerian movies is the events coming off as too calculated. This movie did not have a problem with that, as everything seemed to happen the way it would in reality. It’s not necessarily a unique story, and it does have its plot holes, but it was engaging even so.
Length and Ending
As enjoyable as the movie is, it was too long. It could have been cut short as some of the scenes were unnecessarily stretched. One of such scenes is the fight between the Ojuna boys and the Askamaya bees.
It was clear from the ending that the audience should be expecting a continuation of the movie. Taking that into consideration, the writers need not close the book for some of the characters. The movie felt like it had ended until Lefty yelled, “Stone, it’s not over.” It makes one wonder what other things will be explored in the next part of the franchise.
Overuse of dialogue
The writers depended too much on the dialogues for expression. A perfect example is Lefty shouting, “it’s not over.” They could have hinted at a continuation without using any words, just like they could have advertised Amen Estate without continually mentioning it. The writers also seemed to be trying so hard to carry along the set of audience who hadn’t watched the first Omo ghetto, which prompted them to scatter the back story of the characters all around in the dialogues of several scenes.
In all, Omo ghetto is proof that the aesthetic quality of the Nollywood industry’s movie production has improved immensely. Funke Akindele keeps demonstrating to the film industry she is a force to be reckoned with; she has proven that she can only get better as there has been an improvement since directing Your Excellency. This makes one wonders how she will top herself with what would seem to be the third part of the Omo Ghetto franchise.