Release Date: October 19
Starring: Chinaza Uche, Anthonio J Bell, Tina Mba, Bimbo Manuel, et al.
Eze (Anthonio J Bell) is an American lad born to Nigerian parents. After getting into a fight at school, his mother sends him to Nigeria on false pretense to live with her sister (Tina Mba) to better understand himself, and where his roots, much to his displeasure. It’s in this time of despair and desperation to return back to the US that Eze falls into the hands of charismatic and wily Pius (Chinaza Uche), his cousin, who scams people for a living – the titular Nigerian prince.
It’s not everyday you see a Nigerian movie tell a story away from the glitz and glamor of parties, as has trended since the release of The Wedding Party (2016). It’s on this note Nigerian Prince checks a crucial box. It dares to be different, toes the line, and actually does right by itself for most of its run-time. Most importantly, what this movie really excels at is to call out unscrupulous Nigerians who’ve taken to scams as a means of survival, without mincing words. I can’t begin to stress how important this is in this present time.
Most of the popular parlor tricks that’ve trended over the last two decades get an honorable mention; perfectly painting vivid pictures of what a scam might look like to unsuspecting members of the public who might be inclined to fall victim. The most beautiful part, however, is the continuous reiteration that ANYONE can fall for a scam, which I believe is a valuable lesson to always keep at the back of one’s mind.
British born Nigerian actor, Chinaza Uche, does a terrific job bringing Pius to life. I really got immersed in his world, a Lagos born and bred young man hustling to make a living the best way he knows how to. And while i think much depth could’ve been given to the reason he chose to scam for a living he does give a convincing performance that’ll make you want to forgive his Wakanda-ish accent whenever it becomes almost unbearable.
Anthonio J Bell’s Eze is the perfect example of a 21st century reserved, yet internally conflicted kid. A perfect example of how bad communication could corrupt both the good and not-so-good manners. And how most times seeking a person’s approval so much (in this case his parents) causes us to fail to see how powerful and independent we can actually be. I loved everything about this character; he was quite relatable even though I’m not remotely American 😁.
The Nigerian police’s ability to track someone to an exact location was a shocker; they were able to know Pius and Eze’s exact location swift enough to apprehend them in a moving vehicle. Push this and a few other unrealistic scenes aside -the easy dismissal of Pius’ case at the EFCC’s office and the wack ending- and you’ve got yourself a movie that succeeds in passing its message across. That, I believe, is a win.
Say no to FRAUD of any kind!
Yahoo Yahoo no be hustle!
Directed by: Faraday Okoro
Rinzy’s Rating: 3/5