Broken Ambition



Broken Ambition Nigerian Movie Review 

Story, Screenplay and Direction by Ofom Emmanuel (De Prince)



Patience Ozokwor – Alice

Abraham Nwodu – Ken

Camila Mbrepke – Adaugo

Roy De’Nani – Ude

Chidimma Aneke – Cassandra

Chidiebere Aneke – Sandra

Adaigbo Okafor – Uju

Ikem Chude – Fred

Rita Arum – Dora

Jennifer Nduka – Jane

Chamberlain Amaechi – Chris

Flora Ibe – Nnena



Themes Explored:






NollywoodForever.Com Rating 55%


Cassandra and Sandra are twins (Hold up isn’t Sandra short for Cassandra? I digress…) Cassandra hates Sandra because she “digusts” her. Sandra had an accident in the past which we learn causes her to sometimes behave inappropriately. The only evidence we are shown to highlight this is her continuous burping at the dinner table and her family’s obvious disgust. I felt that this aspect of the story (The effects of the accident) could have been explored in more detail as Cassandra’s hate for her twin supposedly because of her behaviour seemed far fetched and unfounded.


Cassandra even goes as far as to tell a friend that she feels to kill Sandra because she is so disgusted by her. At the same time Sandra is being comforted by their mother, played by Patience. Patience tells her that god is with her and when she feels her misbehaviour coming on she should pray to god to ask her to control it. She is distraught and sobs in her mothers arms,


“I feel so ashamed when I misbehave… I can’t help it.”


At this point I am feeling like the film is just a bit too over dramatic. How does burping at the dinner table equate to misbehaviour that you have to pray to god to deliver you from? Is it that deep? It would have made more sense if Sandra had caught CJD (Mad Cow Disease) and had started falling over, losing her inhibitions and flashing strangers or picking random fights in the village… Now THAT would have made sense… but burping at the dinner table? I don’t buy it.


Cassandra’s hate for Sandra drives her to impersonate her, go and meet with her boyfriend and scam him of money. We learn very quickly that Cassandra is the bad twin. She has nasty personality traits and despite Sandra’s supposed disability, she seems to be a kind hearted girl.


Over in the City in a separate plot we see a film star called Ken and his fiancée Dora, who are happily engaged, until the fiancée’s friend gets involved. She persuades her friend to let her test his fidelity, when in fact her only plan is to snare him for herself and she is willing to lose the friendship over it. She meets him under the pretence she is a film producer. She turns up to a hotel room with a carton of Five Alive which she has injected with some sort of sedative. While he is semi – unconscious she strips him off and beds him.


In the morning Ken is stunned and doesn’t fully recall the night’s events. She sets her plan into full swing by telling him about her friend Dora who is a promiscuous serial abortioner. He soon realises that she is talking about his fiancée and very soon Dora is dumped, all at the hands of a lying schemer, and Jane takes her place as his new fiancée. Ken seems desperate to be married to anyone. If not why does he propose so suddenly, to someone that attacked him against his will?





Jane the attacker is soon dumped by Ken in favour of Cassandra who he meets on the side of the road and falls in love with immediately. He proposes again immediately. I am wondering if the title refers to his ambition to be married which is constantly broken with failed engagements. If the title does in fact refer to this, his fervent desire to be married should have been explored. Why was he proposing to woman after woman? Was he really falling that deeply in love with each woman (which we don’t see) or was there another motive?


Cassandra informs Mama of her plan to marry Ken and Mama cooks up a plan to force Sandra onto Ken instead, as she is scared that noone will want to marry Sandra because of her (non existent) disability. She sends Cassandra to a family member to go and work in Abuja and then she calls Sandra and tells her, “He said he loves you.” It is out of the blue, but nonetheless Sandra goes along with it.


Soon they are married and living together in the city. Everything is fine at first until Ken starts to notice her “funny” behaviour. He complains to his friend Peter about her “uncontrollable attitude.” At this point the film gets a bit ridiculous because it as if the producers do not know what her disability or how it manifests. It is called “misbehaviour” “Silly attitude” and “uncontrollable attitude,however as the viewer the only thing that is shown to us is her burping over the dinner table and her holding her head and fainting. How would any of this transfer to her attitude? It does not make sense. Her disability is also equated to evilness without merit. She has done nothing that shows her in a negative light, yet people refer to her as evil.


Ken soon finds out he is with Sandra and not Cassandra and confronts her. This part of the film does not make sense either because at what point was Sandra pretending to be Cassandra? From what I saw she was not in on the plan. So when did that change?


Cassandra comes back from Abuja and discovers that her suitor is now married to her sister and goes berserk, turning up at their house and pretending to be civil, only to stab Sandra in the kitchen and discard her body in the woods. When she and her friend Uju leave the body it is still alive, yet they refer to her as dead. If she wanted to kill her why didn’t she finish off the job?


She then replaces herself as Sandra in the house. We find out how nasty she is as she steals her husband’s money and is constantly badgering him for money on top of that. Ken feels something isn’t right but cannot place it. It is only when he finds the knife that Cassandra stabbed Sandra with that his suspicions grow. HOLD ON!!! How in the hell would you go and kill someone and then leave the knife on the kitchen floor? DUHHHHHHHHHH! Besides the body that is the main thing you would get rid of!


I enjoyed watching the film, and the twins did a very good job as unknowns (I haven’t seen them before) but as I write this I remember how ridiculous parts of it were. The story needed to be fully developed before filming it, as the story did not flow all the way through, and parts of it changed suddenly and made it confusing to follow. Sandra’s disability also needed to be though through carefully, as no one seemed to have any idea of what the disability was or even what the symptoms were, yet she was referred to at times as if she were sub human. The film did show in ways in which people are vilified through no fault of their own (Sandra) and how what appears to be good (Cassandra) on the surface may really not be. So it teaches us all to get to know people rather that by judge on appearance or what we have heard about them

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