#DeeMovieReview // Isoken

I still can’t fully recall what inspired me to go see yet another Nigerian film, the last few I saw have been nothing short of false advertising and exaggerated promotions.
However, Isoken felt like something I should give a try, as a lady quickly approaching her thirties, who has also felt the constant pressure by families and friends about marriage and my soon coming wedding. One in which I am yet to find a groom. I was curious to see the twist this movie had to offer on the subject.
My first impression of this film, Is that I was watching a typical wedding genre Nigerian film. The last I saw was over hyped and fell very short of my expectations. So apart from being open minded out of curiosity, and the excitement of looking forward to seeing my favourite girls who were lead characters, I was a bit skeptical.
The film opened to a wedding scene, and just before my eyes could roll in sarcasm, I started to truly fall in love. I fell in love with the attention paid to the scene, from the set design to the uniformity of the costumes, which had me in awe.
It wasn’t long after I saw this that I started to wish I had worked on this production.
The attention to detail was beyond any I had ever seen and for a movie that wasn’t an epic film set in another era, it is commendable.

The story line of Isoken is a total cliché, from the background of its main characters which centers on four girlfriends, in their mid-thirties, three of them single and one married. And yes, I am absolutely positive that our favourite fashion girlfriends of Sex and the city must have inspired these characters.

 Isoken is very much like our bradshaw, successful and stylish, with Adegbite playing charlotte, the seemingly naive and married friend, while Forson and Akindele, go ahead to shuffle the roles of both Samantha and Miranda, single and ready to mingle, though I perceive Akindele was more Miranda with those high standards.
 And yet something about this cliché’s doesn’t suck.

Jade Osiberu seemed to have mastered the one missing element needed to create a beautiful  Rom com, the balance between Rom and Com. She also seemed to have mastered it with no vulgarity in language or act.

Although this is a story we have watched a million and one times, if you are like me maybe a billion times, Osiberu found a way to produce a totally relate-able and Nigerianized* version of it and it was perfectly executed.
My favourite thing about this film is the lack of noise, no unnecessary scenes, no distracting elements taking away from the story, the comic is left to a minimal and is depicted in action not words. the use of the montage to merge scenes that could have taken minutes was also an excellent technique that most people should employ more. 
The cast was such a perfect mix of my favourite actresses who continue to show us why they are our favourites. Dakore, Damilola, Funke and Lydia executed their roles perfectly, that I couldn’t stop thinking of how much fun they would have had working together. The chemistry they share on camera is either proof of a great friendship or proof they are excellent actresses and whichever it is made this such a great cast.
The older cast also gave us nothing less than perfection, with Isoken’s family depicting a typical Edo Nigerian family, if you don’t live with your extended family, you can relate with this film just by thinking about family functions or Christmas time in a Nigerian home filled with all the many interesting characters beautifully depicted by her aunts and uncle.
And yet, nothing stood out more than the outstanding performance of Kevin, the oyinbo boy. Nigerian movies never give us that, they never give us a "white" character who is an actor and can act. They usually just go around searching for the skin criteria and once that is met we get whoever they found but Isoken stood out for this.
Not only is Marc an amazing actor, I don’t see anyone else depicting that role as flawlessly as he did. Not even any of the other male Nigerian actors brought that level of talent he brought to the table.
Of course one thing that stood out as mentioned earlier, is the attention to detail of the production team, the costumes, props and set design was well thought through and very proudly Nigerian. The cast wore 90 percent made in Nigeria pieces and the set also carried the same made in Nigerian aesthetics. Every inch was extremely dreamy apart from the repetition of setting props and outfit in non related spaces but that wouldn’t have been noticeable to a lot of people.
The story of isoken is the usual boys meet girl story but somehow, the execution gave us a Nigerian romantic dream.
It left me day dreaming of my own perfect gentleman or funny Oyinbo. It also left me yearning for such beautiful relationship between father and child as seen between Isoken and her dad. 
The overall lesson I took away from this film is the need to do things in your own time, As is best for you no matter what everyone else says especially marriage.

The movie finishes off with yet another cliché, the classic wedding dance scene, establishing what seemed to be the next chapter of the lives of these four friends along with the joy we needed to take a leave from such a satisfying watch.
Isoken is very much the best Nigeria film I have seen in the cinema, and it ranks among the best movies I have seen generally. No production is perfect and there were a few dragged scenes but even with that, this is a 93% movie in rating and is a must watch.

Isoken is a testament that it doesn't have to be a new story, for it to be a good film.
Kudos to the cast and crew for such a well executed film.

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