I have to admit that I have anticipated ‘The Bridge’ from when I found out production was underway probably because Chidinma Ekile was debuting as an actress in it.
I expected a lot from it seeing that it is a Kunle Afolayan movie (I respect his craft like kilode). Here is the official trailer before we go too far:
I could not make the movie as soon as it hit the cinemas but I couldn’t think of any other to officially start my review journey so here we are:
The Story: Read Here for film synopsis
‘The Bridge’was written by seasoned Yoruba Nollywood actor, Lasun Ray and in all honesty, I think the script was excellent. The progression was realistic but for some sloppiness here and there. The story isn’t Wowing but a reflection of our cultural beauty and ills of course.
As expected, the Kunle Afolayan’s spice of fusing multiple Nigerian cultures was not left out in this drama.I expected to see the richness of at least two Nigerian cultures and that I got- Yoruba and Igbo.
The story literally left a Romeo/Juliet taste in my mouth with the similarities of the tragedy of star crossed lovers separated this time by cultural values as opposed to Shakespeare’s warring families.
The cast of ‘The Bridge’ is an adorable display of Nollywood’s veteran faces- Binta Ayo Mogaji, Zack Orji,Tina Mba, Adebayo Salami, Lere Paimo, Lanre Hassan (Mama Awero), Jimoh Aliu, Mama Ray-Eyiwumi among others.
Considering that we have stressed the point of this being Chidinma Ekile’s debut movie, I’d move over to Adedoyin Demola who in my opinion is an excellent actor who isn’t getting the grand ovation he deserves.
I first saw him show off his skills in Kunle Afolayan’s “October 1″ where just like ‘The Bridge’, he plays the crown prince. His diction is impeccable, his movement fluid and the interpretation of his character is always a delight to watch.
Chidinma Ekile on the other hand did not quite cut it for me. From start to the end of her role, I could not shake off the feeling that she was being spoon fed to fit into character. The character Stella in my impression is soft spoken, shy and easy to intimidate but I saw Chidinma’s natural self more evidently that Stella.
Check out my article on Chidinma Ekile for comparison. Although she was amazing for PR, she did not do the movie justice. Does not mean I don’t still adore her.
If you have read the synopsis and any of the stuff I have written so far, you should have figured that:
The movie is a tragedy
Tale of lovers who were fated to die disastrously once one (Obadare) meddled with the affairs of the gods
The bridge is quite symbolic as it goes beyond the link between both sides (South East and South West). Obadare (Protagonist) is kidnapped on the bridge and eventually killed. The play is also named after the bridge but sadly, that’s all the similarity I could figure out. Once again, I smell a huge part of the script was removed. Since the bridge is so important, how come it was only shown twice with little or no relevance ascribed to it in the tale?
Nollywood Don Come Again!
I was having an amazing time till Stella by some in-explainable reason began to fret as though she was possessed by a demon, got into her car, drove off ( all nice and slow) and disrupted a ritual process.
Her rather slow drive automatically rammed into a tree and the director assumed we are stupid enough to believe that a no impact, slow driving ride could lead to the death of the character! I can’t take it no more…
Then again, I saw an opportunity for a twist in tale when the DPO announced that he heard rumors of fowl play surrounding the death of Stella . Considering that in the Yoruba culture, a stranger witnessing a ritual cleansing was tantamount to death, I had hoped that she paid the heavy price. The Ifa priest nullified that by stating on his word that indeed, she suffered trauma from a fatal accident that we all saw wasn’t fatal at all.
The feeling of suspense was sadly not fulfilling. I could practically second guess the end of the story. The insufficient suspense in the tale made me miss out on the pathos which was extremely necessary for a or any tragedy at all.
A Word of Advice…
If you are one of these critical thinkers who tune off and argue about Nollywood’s love for ghosts in white, some in shoes then this definitely is not the movie for you.
I’d rate this movie a 6/10
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