Topping the memes chart and giving what seems to be a flawless argument to the Twitter school of thought that believes “men are scum” menaskum, Anikulapo the latest release of Kunle Afolayan is a movie that employs brilliant modern story telling techniques to make a tribute to one of the foundational belief systems of the Yoruba people.

The story is about Saro, a young man who has lived a nomadic life moving from one village to the other in search of greener pastures. Soon he finds himself in Oyo Ile where he is warmly received by an influential clay moulding business owner, Awarun. He explains that he is a cloth weaver but she convinces him to work for her. In no time, we see that she has had eyes for him. They begin to have an affair and she sets up his cloth-weaving business for him. Of course, all of these favours are not without stares. He soon has issues with Awarun and in a bid to pacify his anger, she refers him to make clothes for the king’s household. There he meets who we will later find out will be the love of his life and the story takes a rather interesting turn, as the supernatural meets the physical at that juncture. Things take an unexpected turn for good and he really wealthy. Unfortunately, the human taste is insatiable and he soon lets his greed get the better part of him. In no time, he betrays his love and it leads to the end.

The story is a really good one. It is the type that is able to carry its audience along with every scene and emotion. I particularly love the inmediares story telling technique (when a story starts from the middle) that was employed. That way, we were introduced to the folktale of the Akala bird and taken forward to see it’s encounter with Saro and Arolake.

Although it is not stated, we can see that the story shows three phases of the life of Saro. First the young and say content Saro who just wants to work hard and make a way for himself through his cloth weaving. But he gets to Oyo Ile and begins to enjoy benefits from Awarun that opens him up to his rebellious phase that came with the immediate consequence of death. Next we see his ressurection that leads to his phase of exaltation and great success, before greed leads him back to death.

As with every folktale, this story is didactic. It emphasizes loyalty and reproves betrayal. It shows the unreliable nature of human’s love especially when wealth and fame gates added to the equation.

Despite the richness of the story, the actors did an excellent job bringing it to life. Every single action and emotion was excellently conveyed by the cast. My favourite example of this is Saro’s wake up scenes. They example may seem a bit too ordinary for such a serious point, but if you take a good look at how Saro reacted the two times he was woken up, you’ll see how good an actor he is.
The cinematography was also really impressive. the colour grading (even though I do not know so much about it) looked nicely blended, I love how the colour blue was used through out most parts of the movie. Especially in Ile Ojumo. It was beautiful. The shots were clean, camera was stable, sound was good. The location used was also adds bonus points to the score of the production.

Finally, there were three things I found really impressive: first how women are represented in all kingdoms, next is the mystery attached to the speaking ability of the king of Ojumo. Many rumors yet we are left to decide which may be true. That was a brilliant addition. And final (which is my favourite) is that there was a whole playlist of GOOD songs for this movie. Nahhh, Kunle Afolayan outdid himself on this one. It’s so impressive.

Among all the impressive things about this movie, the only thing I find somewhat unsettling was the CGI of the Akala bird. Don’t get me wrong, it is a great improvement from what we’re used to in Nollywood, but it could be better.
In summary, Anikulapo was a good movie. One that I will recomend.

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