Digital Participation: Osuofia in London
Osuofia in London is a gaudy comedy about a Nigerian man who leaves his rural village to collect the fortune left to him by his deceased brother in London. It’s an older film out of Nollywood, so the production quality is really low but for me it only added to the hilarity. It was recommended to me by my Nigerian friend who said that it’s a perfect example of a cheesy Nollywood film.
Most of the jokes are based off of the hilarity that ensues when Osuofia, who has never left his village, interacts with the Londoners. Osuofia is an incredibly selfish, stubborn, and argumentative individual who gets into all sorts of trouble. For instance, he found himself in a park and, seeing the gathering of pigeons there, started to hunt them, which eventually led to his arrest, where he was questioned while refusing to let go of the bird he had caught.
Because this movie was made for Nigerian audiences, it was not the polished, cleanly edited version of Africa we tend to get. Shot in mostly pidgin and a bit in Igbo, it was a very raw sample of Nigerian culture and language that was very interesting but at times hard to understand.
Although this movie was very funny and a great source of Nigerian culture, I really wish they had given Osuofia at least one positive atribute, because he was such a bad person it was really hard to root for him as a protagonist.
Furthermore, because Nollywood movies try to make as much money as possible by making as many cheap movies as possible, the plots tend to be slow-moving and circuitous. It wasn’t until the very end that the conflict of the movie was presented and the action really started to happen, and the movie ended right at the climax. This was to convince people to come to see the next movie to get the end of the story, but it made me really frustrated. Maybe I should reserve my judgement until I see “Osuofia in London 2.”