Flick lounge is the one space where your favourite movies are reviewed. Today we introduce an anonymous writer who would prefer to be called ”ADYA”. Watch out for more reviews from this Adya….Enjoy this one!
Lion heart or Obiagu as the Igbo translation goes is Genevieve Nnaji’s directorial debut and a celebration of Feminism, Family, Entrepreneurship ….. and Igboness. It could also easily be the Nigerian play on the Lion King starting with the somewhat obvious nod the titular name.
The story is set against the stunning vista of the Enugu, Nigeria’s Coal’s City. The heart and soul of it is Lionheart Motors, the transportation business Chief Obiagu (Pete Edochie) has built over 3 decades and which Adaeze Obiagu (Genevieve) is set to take over (female Simba anyone?) having understudied her father for 7 years and counting.
The story unfolds with Lionheart facing an existential threat leaning to reduce to rubble the legacy Chief Obiagu has painstakingly built. It is a challenge that will reveal the tenacity of Adaeze, the mendacity of Samuel Akah (Kalu Ikeagwu – call him Mufasa) and the humoured and yet dignified enigma that is Chief Godswill Obiagu, Adaeze’s uncle.
What’s to Love?
- The Celebration of Female Power: Genevieve touchingly carries us along on her journey to becoming her own Woman.
- The Celebration of Legacy: it is a eulogy to multigenerational Nigerian businesses and the values that keep and sustain them from generation to generation
- The Celebration of Family: in the end, isn’t this all that matters? The movie seems to ask
- Igbo Kwenu!: it unashamedly exalts the Igbo language and proudly weaves a story around the Igbo values of entrepreneurship, continuity and generational support.
And the Eye-Rolling Moments?
- English Sub-titles: given the intention to showcase this on the international stage an English sub-title would have really, really helped.
- Keep it Simple not Stupid: There is a commendable effort to make this movie as relatable as possible but on the road to keeping things simple the movie veered onto the path of stupidity sometimes. Examples following:
- How on God’s Earth does a supposedly diligent successor and understudy to a multimillion naira business not know for a whole year that there’s been a billion naira capital injection into said business? Did the 100 new busses fall from the sky? Puhlease.
- And the auditors who are nothing like the professional auditors a well-run Nigerian business would engage. A professional auditor’s job is to review your financial statements not sanctimoniously preen over what they consider your unsound business decisions. This hapless jab at humour using these ordinarily adroit professionals failed abysmally on account of their convincing buffoonery – truly missable.
All in all, it is a good movie which counters the duplicitous Igbo people narrative for the Nigerian audience and sheds a positive light on Nigerian entrepreneur for an international audience who largely associate Nigerians with 419.
Genevieve has done us proud; this is good.
Have you seen the movie Lion heart? let’s hear your review in the comments!