Sacred Lies

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Nigerian Movie Review
Sacred Lies – 2011
Sequel – Heartless
Story/ Screenplay – Chisom Juliet Okereke
Director – Ikechukwu Onyeka
Producer – Kingsley Okereke, Chisom Juliet Okereke

Starring:
Genevieve Nnaji – Isabella
Desmond Elliot – Michael
Nadia Buari – Yvonne
Ecow Smith Asante – Uche
Olu Jacobs – Theodore
Susan Peters – Natasha
Emma Ayalogu – Larry
MaryAnn Apollo – Kaycee
Vitalis Ndubuisi – Inspector
Kingsley Anyaka – Boscoe

Themes:
Human Trafficking
Rituals

NollywoodForever Rating – 60%

Synopsis:

Genevieve Nnaji plays a femme fatale called Isabella that goes by many names to many different men. She appears sweet and innocent but underneath that exterior is a steely hustler who will go to any length to make money whether its stealing diamonds, organising a hit or trafficking children’s organs. She alongside her grandfather and Archbishop Theodore played by Olu Jacobs front a children’s charity called the Wellspring foundation which they use to traffick children’s organs amidst other criminal and immoral activity.
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Well well well I was surprised to see this movie at my local movie stall as I had thought that I was up to date with all Genevieve’s upcoming films. After digging a little deeper I have found out that the movie was shot 2 years ago and is only now being released.

SPOILERS:

The Storyline
I liked the way that different bits of the story were unravelled. As a viewer you are not spoon fed, you have to figure things out for yourself which makes a nice change. Nollywood practioners very often think that we the viewers are dummies and need to be spoon-fed every single detail.

However there is a point up on to which this lack of detail works and sometimes in the movie it did not work. Some things were not made clear at all. For instance there is a part in the movie where Isabella takes her 3 friends and sticks up a car in the night. It was out of the blue and we are never even introduced to those friends beforehand and even afterwards it is some time before we are reintroduced to them. It all felt a bit too vague.

Story Development
We didn’t see Uche and Isabella fall in love. We don’t need it spelt out to us but it was way too sudden and those cheesy walks on the beach didn’t cut it. I know in Nollywood those walks on the beach equal love but a walk on the beach doesn’t equal love in real life. Some originality please!

Character Development
I didn’t like Uche’s character. I didn’t think he suited Isabella. He was too lame and corny for her and came across quite creepy to me. I couldn’t believe that Isabella fell for his stalker behaviour. He was not smooth at all like I’d imagine a guy that shed fall for to be. I felt that their relationship was very poorly developed. I didn’t feel a connection between the two characters It was like play acting. Not to say that both Ecow and Genevieve did not do a good job, on the contrary they did individually, it just didn’t come together. Genevieve needs more meaty roles. This character could have been meaty but just wasn’t well written or developed. Isabella is not as smart as she is purported to be. Why would she taunt her fiance’s sister like that knowing full well that it will cause problems for her? That didn’t even make sense.

The Soundtrack
The music messed up a few times in the movie where scenes were changing. It was rather messy. You would hear off beat piano chords and then a violing type music over it. The music was defnitely off putting an annoying in section

Rituals
The Wellspring foundation is a charitable children’s organisation but beyond that front they are harvesting children in order to snatch their organs and sell them. We see how evil can lurk behind well meaning facades. The head of the organisation Archbishop Theodore played by Olu Jacobs is even a bishop. This means that he is able to mask his evil doings to an even greater extent as once people see his bishop’s robes they automatically assume he can do no wrong. It is important in life for people to delve beneath the surface and make their own judgements about people and situations rather than making assumptions based on what you think a person should be like. Because someone owns the title of archbishop/pastor/priest yes they should be a bastion of morality but the reality may be very different.

Splitting The Movie Into Different Parts
Got to the end of part 2 and hadn’t even reached the climax. How bloody annoying. There has to be a revolution in Nollywood. With the way movies are being split up how will they ever compete in the international arena? If it is the marketers that are causing this issue then there is no role for them in the future of Nollywood. This practise stinks and encourages piracy. Sometimes even if you watch the first part of a movie and enjoyed it you may never be able to get your hands on the continuation. You may never even know what the continuation is called.

Nollywood Forever Says What?
That was a bit stupid Isabella putting a wig over a weave in the beginning, after all its all fake anyway so where is the disguise? SAY WHAT? No different to how u would be changing your hair up if you weren’t in disguise.

Why are Uches sister Kaycee and her husband so against Isabella. SAY WHAT? It was not revealed that they had known her previously so their disapproval was way over the top, especially as Kaycee could give no reason for her disgust except “she’s not your type.”

Why is Isabella so nasty to her co-worker friends? SAY WHAT? Isn’t she worried they will expose her business to her husband out of spite?

The receptionist gave the real escort girls room 225 yet we see Isabella and Yvonne go into room 113. SAY WHAT?
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Conclusion:

I would recommend the movie. I liked the story and although it had the potential to be so much more it was still an interesting and well acted watch. We only see Desmond Elliot for a few minutes at beginning of the movie so it is inevitable that there will be at LEAST another 2 parts. I look forward to finding out what role he plays in the movie and to see how the story ties up.

UPDATE COMING SOON

I would actually raise the rating to 66 because the continuation Heartless finished off the story nicely and it actually got better and more enjoyable although it was still predictable.

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Comments

  1. Miss Tilii says:

    There are just some movies Genny did in 2010 and 2009 that i guarantee you if you gave her the same script today 2011 she will not take it – no matter how much you offer her.

    .

    I miss Genny in her old movies "Sharon Stone", Blood Sisters" etc – I would love to see her in something totally out of her comfort zone – but i guess that is far fetched and wishful thinking if she is working with directors in nollywood with short sight and cannot challenge her – she has reached her ceiling in africa and unless someone truly challenges her – and direct her in a challenging role – its going to be very stagnant.

    I never wanted her to leave us to go Hollywood but at this stage am leaning very towards a foreign director challenging her in an excellent script cos most directors in our industry have proven they cannot (with the exception of a handful – and they know who they are).

    Had Martin Scorcese not continually challenged Leonardo di Caprio he would not have matured like he has.

    I wish my lovely dovey schnookoooms Genny the best. Lord knows you dont need the money – so be extra selective and do only 3 movies a year if you have to – you are an international icon YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO BE EXTRA SELECTIVE AND NAME YOUR PRICE. DONT BUDGE. WE LOVE YOU GENNY.

    • Nollywood says:

      My dear I surely do believe you. I too think that she has outgrown Nollywood. She isn't being stretched, neither is she reaching her full potential IMO

  2. Beyonceh says:

    Well said Miss Tilli,,,,,,,,,,,,May God bless her indeed

  3. edward says:

    the concluding part of sacred lies is Heartless

  4. Chica Africana says:

    There isn't much I can say as you have summarized all of my thoughts perfectly well. Desmond Elliot was shown at the beginning of part one and then in part 3. Why was he introduced so early and then later on in the movie? I in fact, forgot about him. I think, at the beginning of part one,they should have briefly shown us why Isabella become the horrible woman she was portrayed in the movie.

    You are so right about the relationship between Isabella and Uche. I was not feeling them at all and I also agree that Uche was not for Isabella. There was no chemistry whatsoever. Even, if they had shown us the love story between the two, it will have been no use as he was just not for her. He was to dull. I kept pairing her with other guys in the movie…lol

    I did not know how much I missed seeing Nadia and was happy to see her…I liked her role. Like you rightly stated, they should have elaborated a little bit about the history between her and Gen. The movie had a nice story line, but it was not well developed. I ain't surprised and believe me, I have stopped expecting/hoping to see a change. The real Naija movies are the older ones maaan.

    • Nollywood says:

      You have spoken so well. I'm just about to watch part 4 and I think I can predict what is going to happen. Ecow wasn't right for the role. they could have got a guy that could play a sap but where there would be some chemistry.

      Hmm as far as Nadia. I like her but there was nothing special about her role. I just saw her reading lines. I didn't particularly "believe" her especially that bogus seduction of the archbishop. How so unsexy.

      You are right about the old movies, although of course not all of them. I have even started rewatching old ones and even with the extremely low budgets they are miles ahead in terms of execution of the story.

  5. Chica Africana says:

    I started watching part three but for whatever reason, I could not concentrate…will give it another shot today.

  6. BEYONCEH says:

    I ve been waiting for this movie for so long,,,,,,gonna watch now

  7. Tinnahcindy says:

    long ass boring movie. But Genevieve delivered as always.

  8. dede says:

    please what is excatly the name of the third and fourth Part, I can’t find it???

  9. dedngnh says:

    Hello
    Please what are the name of the third and fourth Part, I can’t find it???

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