Silent Scandals

Silent Scandals

Originally uploaded by NollywoodForever

Silent Scandals ~ 2009
Story/ Screenplay – Vivian Ejike
Director – Okey Benson
Producer – Vivian Ejike

Starring:
Genevieve Nnaji – Jessie
Uche Jombo – Mukky
Majid Michel – Naeto
Ebele Okaro – Helen Ubaka
Chelsea Eze – Ella
Tessy Oragwa – Tina
Peachman Akputa – Etim
Pope Stan U. Ndu – Jay Jay
Paul Frank – Richie
Isaac David – Alhaji Danladi
Oladimeji Alimi – Alhaji Aide
Ime Bishop Umoh – Akpan
Dami Solomon – Tonia

Themes:
Single Motherhood
Career
Love
Parenting

My Rating – 76%

Jessie despairs over her wayward daughter Ella. She steals, drinks, smokes and stays out all night with her boyfriend Naeto without any regard for her mother. She is uncontrollable. Her mother is at her wits end and devastated when one day she has to pick up her young daughter from a police holding cell after being caught shoplifting. This action is the deciding factor in her being sent by her mother to live in the UK to live with her father.

After Ella’s departure Naeto falls on hard times and desperate to provide for his family he takes a job as a driver on his neighbour’s recommendation. His new boss is a highly strung career orientated woman who has little time for fun. Slowly he begins to break through her steely exterior and the two become close. Little does he know that this woman who is his boss is also Ella’s mother.

*************SPOILERS*************

The Good
All in all a great group of actors and actresses were selected to play the characters. No drive by performers, except for Naeto’s best friend Richie played by Paul Frank. He was teetering the line between drive by and acceptable.

I loved Majid Michel playing the Naija boy role complete with the Pidgin English. His intensity is concentrated in his eyes and he uses it well so it is understandable that he always gets roles in which love and women and the seduction of them play a large role. It is a role that he plays to perfection.

Genevieve Nnaji kills it in the scene where Naeto declares his love to her. She is stripped bare and her vulnerability exposed. She tells Naeto,

“Has it ever occurred to you that I am human…that I feel too… I may hurt sometimes”

It was an excellent performance from Genny, from the expressiveness conveyed in her eyes, to the breaking of her voice mid speech. It is the first time her character Jessie shows raw emotion. This is coming from a woman who is usually a complete killjoy. Can you imagine a woman that reprimands staff for singing Happy Birthday to her?

I liked the build up of chemistry between Majid and Genny. Just like in Emerald the chemistry was intense and electrifying. It is not immediately apparent which makes it all the more beautiful as it comes across deep and intense as we watch their bond strengthen over time. We see a real connection between the two as Naeto melts away Jessie’s steely exterior.

Naeto and Ella also had great chemistry. We see the laughter and playfulness between the two. In fact their characters actually appear to get along better than Majid and Genny’s which is often fraught with tension and hesitance. Although they both long for each other neither one knows where they stand with the other.

I thought Chelsea Eze was cast well as Ella. She was also a good actress. She looked like a teenager/young adult, and at the same time tall, slim and pretty with great bone structure so it was very believable that she was a model.

This is the first Naija movie I have seen where a chick was wearing a bikini and not a bikini over a swimming costume and some cycling shorts! Kudos on that front because it looks so fake to see someone in a swimming pool with a million layers of swimwear on, a la Juliet Ibrahim in Naked Weapon
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The build up of tension to the inevitable fall out when the love triangle is exposed is carefully engineered. By the time it got to the surprise party for Jessie that was actually being held at Naeto’s heart my heart was pounding fast, anxious and eager to see what the reactions all round would be.
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The Bad
The story was flawed for me because in order for it to work certain situations had to be engineered that did not really make sense. For instance the situation where Ella was sent to stay with her father in the UK but instead went to stay with her grandmother in Abuja was a little far fetched for me. The father would have been expecting her, so when she did not arrive would he not have been worried and contacted her mother. There is no indication that he is in on the plan so this was a glaring omission in my eyes. Wouldn’t Ella have called from the UK to say she had arrived? Wouldn’t a UK number come up on her mother’s phone?

Another of these situations was when Ella wants to stay with her grandma, “til I figure out what to do.” Yet she claimed to miss her mother so much and hadn’t seen her in a while. Wouldn’t she have wanted to rejoin her mother if this was the case? It would have made more sense to me if she said that she wanted to stay in Abuja until she finished school or because that was where the modelling jobs were. I mean what on earth was she supposed to be figuring out?

Ella when she comes back into Jessie’s life is supposed to be 20 and Jessie supposedly was pregnant when she was barely that age which would make her around 38-40 years old. I wasn’t buying it. I thought they would have fared better if Genevieve was supposed to have had Ella when she was 15/16.

I didn’t think Jessie driving to the slums where Naeto lived and ordering him to drive was very realistic. If the guy was at the point where he had had enough of her snotty attitude then her turning up and giving more of the same and his accepting it did not seem feasible to me. Or did the fact that she came to look for him give him hope that perhaps she felt something for him so he simply obeyed her command clinging onto that hope? D’ya think? Maybe?
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Sound was sometimes poor which made it difficult to comprehend what was going on all the time because the voices were too low at times. Even worse was when the voices were low and then music blasted over the top, because even if you put the volume up, the music on top only got louder too. This music over dialogue happened at a very crucial moment when Naeto was dumping Ella so it was highly disappointing not being able to clearly hear what was being said.
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Notable Scenes
I thought the scene where Ella was caught shoplifting was ridiculous. The woman in the store attempts to convince Ella that the size 10 will fit her, after Ella has emerged from the dressing room and has already stated that the dress is too big for her. The woman tells her, “Its ok, just try it on.” Huh? You saw her just come from the dressing room and she told you it is too big. Why are you saying Its OK? Noo! it is not OK.

A hilarious scene was at Jessie’s surprise birthday party when Naeto’s friends schmooze up to Jenny assuming that she is Ella’s friend. One of them throws her seductive looks while he kisses her hand. When she reveals that she is Ella’s mother her hand is dropped like a hot rock!
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The Confusion
I was confused about the relevance of the first fashion show clip we see. It was inserted randomly between scenes. It does not fit in and seems rather like overkill in the shameless plugging for Zizi Cardow. It would have made sense to save the fashion scenes to fit in for after Ella becomes a model and tie it into that storyline. This was done too but it should have been left solely for that.

During the scene where Muky tried to organise an abortion Jessie is reluctant saying,

A D and C, at my age? It’s too risky.”

What has age got to do with an abortion? Is it riskier for a 39 year old to have an abortion as opposed to a 18 year old? I don’t think so. In fact according to research teens are up to twice as likely to experience dangerous cervical lacerations during abortion compared to older women, probably because they have smaller cervixes which are more difficult to dilate or grasp with instruments. Teens are also at higher risk for post-abortion infections such as pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) and endometritis because their bodies are more susceptible to infection and they are less likely than older women to follow instructions for medical care. So that statement was not based in any fact at all.

At the end of the movie we get up on the screen 30 MONTHS LATER. I had to laugh. What was that in aid of? Why not say 2 years or 2 ½ years later? Who want to be watching a movie and then doing mental arithmetic at the same time? Additionally who understand the end of this movie because I did not get it. I understood that he chose to be with neither woman but at the same time what was all the business in the car about the bomb?
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I would recommend the movie. It had a quality that felt far superior to the regular Idumota stuff you get and it was enjoyable, despite the flaws highlighted. The magic you get on screen with a Genevieve and Majid pairing is alone enough reason to watch. THUMBS UP.

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  1. aegoli says:

    nolly gud job as usual…IMO, i think we shud hav gotten a higher rating…mayb in d 80's or smthg…i felt d same frustration wit d background music especially wen itz in an intense scene…i thot ella moved in wit her granny only after she returned frm d uk, but got confused wen she claimed 2 hav passed her exams…2 b sincere wit u, all my attention was on genny n majid, n i think they nailed d script…i must also confess i'm impressed with vivian ejike n hp 2 see more frm her in d future…cheers

    • Thanks for coming by Aegoli. I toyed with a higher rating but the flaws were so integral I settled on 76… Although it was an enthralling watch and better than the majority of the tat being put out it was not as good as Guilty Pleasures IMO which I gave 80, or even Empty Coffin which I gave 78.

      The Majid Genny pairing is an excellent one but the best is still yet to come I'm sure!

  2. SG says:

    I love Genevieve! Her acting skills are phenomenal, as well as Uche and Majid. The story was a great relief from all of the subpar BS that Nollywood has been spewing out lately.

    Gene nailed it as Ms. Ice Queen, loved it. The chemistry between her and Majid, is by far better than her and Ramsey. Majid oozes sex appeal, so when you put both of them together onscreen you are bound to feel fireworks. I did not eat for the whole duration of this movie, not even bathroom breaks-LOL.

    I agree with your previous submitter it needed higher ratings. I would give it at leats a 85. The Abuja scene noted confused me as well, also the ending.

    But I pray there is a ending somewhere int he future. I think he could not decide on the two women because each one he was attracted to so he faked his own death.

    Kudos to the screenwriter, and the producer.

    • Yup yup that is why Genny has been hailed as the Queen of Nolly on Oprah. She definitely deserves that title. I think that was the end of the movie. I doubt very much there will be a continuation.

      Funny he faked his own death cos I just watched another movie where he did the same thing… Gameboy/Playboy. Have you seen Chase with Ramsey and Uche?

  3. nneoma says:

    Genevieve only gets better and better with time.
    Random question, though…didn't know where else to ask it, but is Dakore Egbuson no longer doing movies these days? I miss her – not the greatest performer, but she was good, and I also thought that with time she would only get better. I heard that her potential in-laws were not too happy about her choice in acting as a career.

    • I don't know what has happened to her. I haven't seen her in any movies lately… Last time I saw her was in an advert before the movie! I heard she was singing now… She has some stuff on youtube.

  4. SG says:

    I have the movie Chase, but I am scared to watch it. Is it any good?

  5. Truf.. says:

    Hey Beautifull, I enjoyed reading your review..

    You raise some good points about arithmetic, abortion and "The Bomb". lol

    Happy Holidays

    tru

  6. Jumoke says:

    OMG, I just finished watching it Nolly, thanx to youtube. The movie definetly worth 85%, Genny oh, Genny, my angel she was on point as usual, Majid nailed it also. The chemistry btw Genny and Majid was gud but I still love Ramsey Nouah any day, any time. It's just that the ending was somehow..I would have loved it, if they wrapped it up better than that. Good job once again Nolly, have a merry chritmas :)

  7. Jumoke says:

    Chelsea Eze's performance was also great and I agree with u on the electrifying chemistry between her and Majid. This is my first time of seeing her in a movie and she seriously impressed me, I love her acting and looks. All in all cudos to the writer, producer and director :)

  8. JJ says:

    With the end scene with the bomb talk it was meant to be a joke. i guess u did not get. u see how majid was dressed like a taliban or something like that. so the friend was like did u bomb up the place or something along the lines and majid was like if i did u wud not be sitting in the car or something like that. but in all it was for jokes. but it was a gud move. i liked it very much. i hve my top 5 movies of the yr: sin of the soul, guilty pleasures, perfect picture, silent scandals, and the prince's bride.

    • Thank you JJ what you have said makes alot of sense. I sorta knew it was supposed to be a joke but then I still didn't get it. I like your list except for Sin of the Soul (Deadly Heart) I thought part two of that movie turned into a joke…

  9. Nessa says:

    Hello Nolly thank you for the analysis of this movie…
    I also had the same questions and notice that you on the scenario, the sound and the characters.
    But anyway, I liked the movie but the end irritated me because I am to ask the following question: what is finally Maji is to amuse exploiting the mother and the girl and why???

    I still thanks you for this blog

  10. AS FOR ME, I THINK THE KISSING SCENE BTWN GENNY AND MAGID WAS DAMN TOO SHORT.

    AH AH VIVIAN, WHY DO YOU HAVE TO BE SO STINGY WITH THE KISSING SCENE, AT LEAST LETS SEE THEM WHIP SOME TONSIL TENNIS FOR AT LEAST 2 MINS –

    WE WANT MORE, we aint seen anything this good since Muna whipped it on Ms Genny in He lives In Me and what not. Abeg next time stretch a lil, at least 3 mins. :lol:

    • BEYONCE says:

      Hahaaa, gal you made me laugh…..
      I still have to watch this movie cos it take a few weeks to get it here in Namibia from the US supplier.

      I have EMERALD thou and guess what, I watch the kissing parts every day, oh, "Majenny" its so appetising watching them……….hahaaa.
      I think Majid enjoy those type of movies neh…. I wonder if he does the same with Tonto cos Tonto will not hold back…………..lol…
      I orderd "friends in love" wonder if theres any kissing there

    • Do you know what happened to Muna anyway? Havent seen him in anything for tiiiiiiiime!

  11. Praise says:

    Overall I thought the movie was good, and you gave it a fair grade. One question though, Nolly, how do you determine the grades you give these movies? Do you have like a rubric or something you use? Just wondering lol. But anyways, the movie was good except for the end, which was way too abrupt and confusing.

    • Yeah the ending made it feel unfinished to me!

      With regards to ratings… a figure appears in my head and I write it down… LOL

    • LindaN. says:

      I agreed the first time about the ending, but after watching it a second time with my sister. She point out a very important details which brings me to say that the movie doesn't need another 4th part. Nollywood is so used with dragging a 4th, 5th parts into a movie that they always expect another part when a movie ends perfectly like that. The ending makes sense based on the title, it was a silent scandal which ended Silently. He lied about his death to both women. In order for all of them to be at peace, he had to get out of the picture or in that case their lives. I really get the "blow it up" joke, he went in to check on both women without revealing himself, if one of the ladies had seen him then that fashion show would have been on fire or this case "Bombed out" LOL, fainting scene would happen. He cared about Ella but the love of his life is Jessi. It would be very akward for him to chose to be with mother or daughter when they will always crossing paths with each other if they all knew. Dragging another part will then be unfinished to me cause that writer would have a lot of thinking to do Lol.

      • What you say does make sense, but I couldn't help to feel confused the first time I watched it. Thinking about it it has to be a better ending that the usual Nollywood scenario in this setting which would be one of them die.

  12. BEYONCE says:

    Pls another movie for Genny and Majid…………
    Can't get tired of them, they are great, only that Genny holds back sometimes….

    I also like romance movies with Steph and Van Vicker. Their chemistry is always on point.

    By the way when will " through the glass" be out>>>>>

  13. LindaN. says:

    Love it! Love it! Love it… though I was expecting the mid 80 from you Nolly. I want to point out one thing and I quote "Naeto and Ella also had great chemistry. We see the laughter and playfulness between the two. In fact their characters actually appear to get along better than Majid and Genny’s which is often fraught with tension and hesitance. Although they both long for each other neither one knows where they stand with the other."
    Keep in mind Nolly that she was staying in her character and not overdoing it from being fraught, strict, hardworking business mother that she is to abruptly being preppy, happy like Ella (who's character is being young and having fun with life).
    I love it when she told Nato " I was scared of the truth…" that's the vulnerability you should refer to Nolly. Oh and the agee would not matter, that makes her a cougar LoL!!

    • I enjoyed it too but there were way too many question marks for a mid 80 mark in my opinion…

      Hmm I understand that th3e attraction between the two may have been greater however in real terms Naeto and Ella clearly appeared better together.

      In terms of age even if she was 60 it wouldnt matter! It was the believeability factor in her age that I was questioning, not her going with a younger guy…

  14. The actor who played Naetos friend and confidant – with CRAP skills in acting was called Richie in the movie (as Ella described him Richie the alcholic) and his real name is PAUL FRANK. Samde lackluster dude who played Liz (Nse Etim) mumu friend in Guilty Pleasures whom Ramsey (Temi) wiped all over his office floor in GP :lol: .

    Lets get is straight Nolly cos the acting reputation is bad we wont want to get the names mixed up.

  15. Jumoke says:

    Hey, I said earlierin my comment that the chemistry between Naeto and Ella was much stronger and better than that of Genny and Naeto. For whatever reason Genny holds back with Majid, I don't know why maybe someone can help me out here.

  16. BEYONCEH says:

    Oh yaah man, If Genny could just go with the flow when it comes to such , it would be quiet amazing…….. May be the gal is simply protecting her reputation

  17. Adwoa says:

    Nollywood Forever..I love your blog! You are simply too much!!
    I must say that's exactly what I was thinking when I saw the movie especially with Ella's case. Why didn't her father call his mother or Jessie???? I kept hoping that part will come but I was wrong.
    The movie was nice and I must say Vivian Ejike did a great job but if all of your questions was answered then this movie would rate 95% but I guess it's too late now.
    Thank you!!

  18. MonicaB says:

    Nolly I agree with your rating … I mean to say I still went out to get it @ 76%. I love Tell-it-like-it-is's comment about Jenny and Muna in He Lives Within Me (1 of my favourites). But I guess its more like who you feel more comfortable with the more 'tonsil tennis action' will occur. Back to Silent Scandal … again I must say a good watch. Poor sound quality, my ear was nearly on meh tv's sound output for some parts. A lot of unanswered questions but since movie had a moving story line we can let those go. I got the dressed like a Taliban/bomb joke in the end but I didnt get where he faked his death. A little more film could of been sourced there instead of on Naeto and Ella playing around. Ummm, and this is only my opinion here but I dont think the high-top hairstyle on Majid makes him look attractive …

  19. anselm says:

    this movie needs an oscar award 4 a start.it was near perfection,i watched it 6 times,even my friends confessed their love 4 this movie.genevieve i pray u make hollywood one day.picture quality was nice,voice treatment was good.good job vivian ejike.am in love with this movie,it is outstanding.

    • Nolly says:

      It could have been perfect if just a few niggles were ironed out and the sound was imporved. Never the less it is still one to watch out for!

  20. TheChuckylee says:

    I think the ending was ok since people say nollywood movies are always predictable(don't agree though) so now they end it in a way you wont expect. Nice movie with a very good picture quality and an excellent cast Genny,Majid,Chelsea,Ebele Okaro and Uche Jombo not forgeting the gateman.(he was soo funny)

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