Ramsey Nouah, Susan Peters, Bimbo Ademoye, Chioma Nwosu
Naomi, a single mother is overjoyed when her only child comes home to visit from the UK, but when she is introduced to the man that her daughter wants to marry she is reminded of a part of her past she had tried so hard to bury.
THIS REVIEW MAY CONTAINS SPOILERS
I’ve seen numerous comments on irokotv with people getting annoyed by the westernization in nollywood movies. Previously I was unphased, however nothing quite touches that ‘over westernization’ as Naomi’s Dilemma did.
At first it’s a welcome change. The things that would be over dramatized in other nollywood movies just kind of got swept away here without much ado about anything. However, when the storyline reads – a mother is searching for her only daughter alongside her daughter’s boyfriend, after hours of searching with no results she goes home to see if her daughter has come back but she hasn’t, she is frantic, she is screaming and all of a sudden she is kissing her daughter’s boyfriend…? Huh? Where did that come from?
Before we jump in let’s get a little background on what’s happening here. In Naomi’s Dilemma a single mother is about to meet her daughter’s boyfriend. When he walks in, he turns out to be a man much older than her daughter, but that’s not the issue (hurray for westernization), the issue is that this is a man that she used to know.
This older guy is played by Ramsey Nouah and as the story moves along, things are revealed and you realize that he’s possibly about 43-47yrs old. Then the first question that comes into mind for me is, “so why is his beard so gray if he’s only in his 40s?” I’m not talking ‘salt and peppa’ kinda gray, not talking Idris Elba kinda grey – Why is he old man grey? But more importantly, why is there no continuity in the graying? Why is the beard gray and the head on his hair is just black? Aaah… so many questions but back to the movie.
Naomi’s Dilemma is a movie that you want to love. The production quality is immaculate and you can tell. The director puts in effort and the original soundtrack actually sounds good. The problem is that in many scenes it seems the drama is more so coming from the elements of the production and not so much from the actors especially in scenes with Susan Peters. There aren’t many scenes in this movie where her performance is believable or authentic. It’s hard to believe her when she is panicking and searching for her daughter, it’s hard to believe her when she is in love and it’s hard to believe her every time in between.
My favorite part of this movie is probably the throwbacks. There’s a part where the daughter asks the mother ‘why’ and she responds ‘because Y has a long tail and two branches’ (hadn’t heard that one in years so that was amusing). There was also the throwback picture of the real Ramsey and the real Susan taken many years ago (that was cute). And finally there was the throwback element of just having Ramsey be our lover boy again… and it worked. Ramsey can romance us any day. In fact, if the writers had decided to roll with the 40 year old man – 20 year old girl storyline we would have still fallen for it hook, line and sinker.
Another great thing about the movie is how things are not always what you expect. You expect Segun to be the girl’s father and he is not. You expect the mother to take half the movie to get over him but she’s in his bed 2-3 scenes later. You expect a flashback of some sort and no one is bothered to show that either. It’s not here to meet your expectations.
This review and rating is one of those scenarios that exemplify why rating different aspects of a movie might not always be the best decision. This is because the elements that makeup this movie are very well done but the story itself is a whole other matter.