By Isabella Akinseye
Arguably, the most talked about and highly anticipated Nollywood movie of 2017, ‘Banana Island Ghost’ is finally here. Directed by BB Sasore (‘Before 30’) and produced by media maverick Biola Alabi (‘Bukas and Joints’), the star studded action comedy follows the story of a ghost (Patrick Diabuah) who has three days to fall in love with his soul mate, the cantankerous firecracker Ijeoma (Chioma ‘Chigul’ Omeruah). Ijeoma has three days to raise 18 million Naira to save her late father’s Banana Island house from the bank reclaiming and selling it to Mr King (Ali Nuhu). The pair must first survive each other, then learn to work together, and eventually fall in love, to see their destinies unfold.
Cinematography. Lagos is beautifully captured in the cinematography of B.I.G from the iconic Ikoyi Link Bridge to the lagoon under Third Mainland Bridge, the movie is filled with great videography of the city’s popular landmarks. The drone shot of the accident scene is done so well that you could easily mistake the scene from a Hollywood production. Another impressive scene is the one in the canoe where God (Bimbo Manuel) and the ghost are having a heart-to-heart.
Special effects. Hands down, the best film to come out of Nigeria when it comes to visual effects and Computer Generated Imagery (CGI). A scene shot at the University of Lagos has God appearing and reappearing showing that nobody not even the ghost can hide from God. It is complemented with a flurry of coloured petals to enhance the movement and supernatural abilities of God.
Acting. The first time leads; Chioma Omeruah and Patrick Diabuah gave strong performances. Chigurl brought her trademark humour coupled with a depth of vulnerability that has you sucked in and rooting for her. Thespian Diabuah delivered superbly on screen and the chemistry with Chigurl is believable. Veteran actors like Saidi Balogun and Bimbo Manuel excelled in their craft. The break out star of the movie has to be Akah Nnani who gave the best performance of his career so far as a bumbling police officer, Sergeant. He was funny, dramatic and totally owned his character.
Star studded cast. Chioma ‘Chigul’ Omeruah, Patrick Diabuah, Adetomiwa Edun, Saidi Balogun, Ali Nuhu, Uche Jombo, Bimbo Manuel, Akah Nnani, Damilola Adegbite, Kemi Lala Akindoju, Dorcas Sola Fapson, DJ Obi, Uche Nwaefuna, Tina Mba and Abimbola Ademoye feature in the film. The movie had a good mix of ‘old’ and ‘new’ Nollywood as well as foreign based actors, celebrities and even a cameo by Biola Alabi. With the likes of Saidi Balogun and Ali Nuhu starring in the film, fans of Yoruba and Hausa movies are sure to love B.I.G.
Comedy. The movie is funny both in a comical and an intelligent way. Expect to laugh at Saidi Balogun’s character as a lecherous police officer alongside his good-for-nothing assistant played by Akah Nnani. Chioma Omeruah too holds the movie down bringing her Chigurl personality to life. There are funny scenes like the one in the BRT bus where a foreign accented business man goes all street when his phone is stolen. The scene where lovebirds Dorcas Sola Fapson and Tomiwa Edun have food poisoning and start to defecate on themselves will have you in stitches.
Product placement. B.I.G is littered with brands. Logos keep popping up every now and again that you are forced to read them. Even when you try to blink it away, the scene with Dorcas Shola Fapson sipping a bottle of coke in slow motion could easily be found in a Coca-Cola TV commercial. We have Lipton, Sunlight, Cold Stone creamery, BRT and Health Plus all having their B.I.G moments.