Living In Bondage, Bling Lagosians And Other Movies That Shaped Nollywood In 2019

 

 

2018 brought us the likes of King of Boys, Merry Men, New Money and Lion Heart, amongst others.

2019 on the other hand, has arguably been a far quieter year in movies for the Nigerian film Industry.

While the industry continues to churn out movies, up its game in terms of quality and consequently, global appeal, it still appears as though there was less publicity for most of the top movies of the year compared to years prior.

Channels TV’s Entertainment News, has, however, been able to pull up a list of movies that shaped the year.

From box office hits, to movies that people generally loved according to Google stats, here’s our top 10 movies for 2019 (by month).

Read Also: From Rema To Fireboy DML: Top Showbiz Expectations For 2020

Light In The Dark

 

The challenges of life threaten to tear a couple’s marriage apart. But they struggle to seek the light that only true love can bring.

Starring veteran actors, Joke Silva, Rita Dominic, Ngozi Nwosu and Kalu Ikeagwu, the movie is centered on themes of love, betrayal and tribalism.

Directed by Ekene Mekwunye, it was released in January.

 

Nimbe

The movie tells the story of a teenager suffering from parental negligence, constantly being bullied by his peers but finds consolation, love and relevance in a street gang he is introduced to by an older neighbour who he meets by chance.

In this company, he is introduced to the dangerous world of drugs, hooliganism and thuggery where he experiences the accompanying challenges and consequences prevalent of such a life.

Starring Toyin Abraham, Chimezie Imo, Rachael Okonkwo and Doyin Abiola, the movie addresses issues associated with drug abuse, prostitution, cultism, some of the causes, and how to identify and avoid them.

It was directed by Tope Alake and released in March 2019.

 

Gold Statue

Starring Gabriel Afolayan and veteran actors, Sola Sobowale, Richard Mofe Damijo and Nobert Young, the movie tells a story of two young men, who try to locate a “Gold Statue,” which may have been a deity inherited by their generation.

After discovering that the statue is buried somewhere in a prison in Ilesha, Osun State, one of them decides to risk everything and end up in jail.

Produced by Tade Ogidan, and released in May 2019, the movie bagged several nominations at the Africa Movie Academy Awards.

 

Mokalik (Mechanic)

Directed by Kunle Afolayan, Mokalik tells the story of an 11-year-old boy who, although from a rich home, his life takes a different turn when he is sent to work as an apprentice at a mechanic workshop far from his home in the suburbs.

The comic-drama released in May features Femi Adebayo, Ayo Adesanya and Singer, Simi, amongst others.

It was also nominated for the Durban International Film Festival 2019.

 

Bling Lagosians

So we all know that Lagosians are generally known to love to party hard and it is no different for the Holloways.

A wealthy Lagos family, their mother Mopelola, is about to celebrate her 51st birthday party and she is bent on having a lavish celebration which could become the year’s biggest society event.

But the buzz about the party compels the Asset Management Corporation to foreclose on ST. IVES, the family business.

Drama ensues as Akin Holloway (her husband) makes efforts to cancel the party and maintain a low profile to get them off the radar and also save their business.

Released in June 2019, the Bolanle Austen-Peters film features Elvina Ibru, Toyin Aiyemakun, Osas Ighodalo among others.

 

Love and War

Imagine a couple running against each other in an election, weird right?

Well, that was the crux of the movie, Love and War, starring Richard Mofe Damijo and Omoni Oboli (Mr and Mrs Philips) who ran against each other for the position of governor in the same state.

The comedy-drama was released in September.

 

Kasanova

This romantic comedy is about a single dad who falls in love with the mother of his son’s crush. It is a story that highlights the importance of family, friendship and love.

Directed by Oluseyi Amuwa, the movie was released in September.

It features Iretiola Doyle, Toyin Abraham, Ruby Akubueze and Alvin Abayomi, among others.

 

Farming

The movie tells a story of a young Nigerian boy, ‘farmed out’ by his parents to a white British family with hopes of a better future.

A directorial debut by British-Nigerian actor, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, Farming depicts the struggles of the young teenager, struggling with an identity crisis and eventually finding his place in life.

It was very surreal, very cathartic, at times very emotional but ultimately it was like the fruition of a vision that I had carried for so many years,” Akinnuoye-Agbaje had told Channels Television in an interview.

The film released in October features Genevieve Nnaji, Kate Beckinsale, Damson Idris, among others.

 

The Ghost and The House of Truth

A dedicated counsellor, Bola Ogun, facilitates reconciliation sessions between convicts and victims of their crimes.

But when her own daughter goes missing, her belief in forgiveness is tested.
The movie features Susan Wokoma, Kate Henshaw, Tope Tedela, among others.

Directed by Akin Omotoso, it was released in November and has been nominated for the Urban World Film Festival.

 

Living In Bondage: Breaking Free

If you watched Living in Bondage in the 90’s, then chances are, you might be excited to see how the film was re-enacted nearly 27 years after.

Living in Bondage: Breaking Free tells the story of an ambitious young man, Nnamdi Okeke, who, like everyone else, wants more out of life.

However, he can’t afford the kind of life he wants with his current income and an encounter with Chief Ibaka, a family friend with a notoriously dark past opens the door to his dream life.

It all comes at a great price, that could change his life forever.

Within three weeks of its release in November, the Ramsey Nouah film became a huge box office success grossing over 100 million.

It also became the highest-grossing Nigerian film in 2019 surpassing the record set by Bling Lagosians.

The film is also ranked eighth in the overall list of highest-grossing films in Nigeria.

2018: The Year Of Wakanda, Assurance, Fever, And Hard Goodbyes

 

Every year comes with its fair share of good, bad and wild moments and 2018 brought nothing short of that in entertainment.

From Davido giving us Assurance to Amaka disappointing us and Wizkid and Tiwa, giving us Fever and eventually some hard goodbyes we had to say, here are some of the top moments that shaped the year.

Black Panther and the tale of Wakanda (February 16)

The movie which tells the tale of a fictitious African country, Wakanda, from the perspective of affluence, light age development and technology was one of the many that had viewers enthralled.

The film particularly appealed to people of colour because they felt it was a shift from the regular plots which always portray Africa as an underdeveloped, forsaken continent.

More exciting for some fans was the fact that Nigerians were among the cast.

Acrimony (March 30)

The psychological thriller starring Taraji P. Henson, tells the story of a loyal wife who decides to take revenge on her ex-husband after he becomes successful, following years of their struggle together.

Read Also: Tyler Perry’s Acrimony Trends Again, Months After Release

He remarries and lavishes his new wife with everything he had promised his ex-wife – a situation which infuriates her and makes her hell-bent on revenging.

The movie left most of its viewers in utter shock and in a state of introspection such that months after its release, the debate over who was right or wrong lingered.

It was produced, written, and directed by Tyler Perry.

Davido Gave Chioma ‘Assurance’ (May 1)

2018 was the year singer, Davido, gave his girlfriend ‘Assurance’, proclaiming his undying love for her.

In the music video for the hit single, his girlfriend Chioma Avril Rowland, made a cameo appearance and the artist was seen professing his love for her, crowning it all by gifting a Porshe Car which was said to be between 45 to 50 million Naira.

The song had most people falling in love and seeking similar ‘assurance’.

Consequently, the lovebirds continued to trend for weeks on end.

While fans continued to show them love, some critics, however, called out the DMW crooner for flaunting his relationship despite having several ‘baby mamas’.

Meghan and Prince Harry’s Royal Wedding (May 19)

A picture released by Kensington Palace on behalf of The Duke and Duchess of Sussex on May 21, 2018 shows Britain’s Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, (CL) and his wife Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, (CR) posing for an official wedding photograph with (L-R back row) Master Brian Mulroney, Miss Remi Litt, Miss Rylan Litt, Master Jasper Dyer, Prince George of Cambridge, Miss Ivy Mulroney, Master John Mulroney and (L-R front row) Miss Zalie Warren, Princess Charlotte of Cambridge and Miss Florence van Cutsem in the Green Drawing Room, Windsor Castle, in Windsor on May 19, 2018. PHOTO: Alexi Lubomirski / KENSINGTON PALACE / AF

The Royal wedding had the whole world talking for weeks leading up the event and weeks after.

Read Also: Royal Wedding: Prince Harry Weds Meghan Markle

The new Duke and Duchess of Sussex exchanged vows at the altar in St. George’s Chapel in an emotional event that brought the bi-racial US TV star into the heart of the British monarchy.

Falz’ This Is Nigeria (May 25)

A cover for US Rapper, Childish Gambino’s This Is America, Falz’ This Is Nigeria, became one of the hot topics of the year as it highlighted major issues around the nation’s politics, security and economy.

The video sparked conversations and immediately gained up to 15 million views in the past seven months.

World Mourns ‘Queen Of Soul’ Aretha Franklin (August 16)

Raised on gospel, bathed in rhythm and blues and fluent in jazz and pop, Aretha Franklin came to be known as the “Queen of Soul” through seven decades of electrifying performances.

Read Also: ‘Queen Of Soul’ Aretha Frankiln Dies At 76

From her father’s church to the hallowed grounds of the US Capitol, Franklin sang for parishioners and presidents and left her mark on music fans everywhere.

She died in Detroit where family and friends had gathered during her final days, her publicist told US media.

Wizkid, Tiwa Savage Give Fans ‘Fever’ (October 24)

Another hot topic of the year was the purported sizzling romance between singers, Tiwa Savage and Wizkid.

While both singers kept mum on the issue, their chemistry in the music video for Wizkid’s Fever, seemed to fuel the speculations that they could be dating.

Read Also: Wizkid, Tiwa Savage Give Fans ‘Fever’ In New Video

Regardless of whether or not they were, they had us talking about them as well as enjoying their music and both singers quickly emerged as the top trends on social media at the time.

Stan Lee (November 12)

Hollywood lost the legendary Stan Lee, who revolutionized pop culture as the co-creator of iconic superheroes like Spider-Man and The Hulk who now dominate the world’s movie screens.

Read Also: Marvel Comics Legend Stan Lee Dies At 95

Lee rose through the ranks to become a comics writer, making millions of superhero fans dream of his fantastic universes and humans with extraordinary powers, and eventually led the Marvel empire for decades as its publisher.

He died in Los Angeles after suffering a number of illnesses in recent years.

Farewell to the ‘voice of Lagos’ Tosyn Bucknor (November 19)

Nigerians bade farewell to on-air-personality, Tosyn Bucknor, popularly known as the ‘voice of Lagos’ on November 20.

She died at the age of 37, following complications from the sickle-cell disease.

Read Also:   ‘My Darling Sister Is Gone,’ Funke Mourns OAP Tosyn Bucknor

Bucknor was reportedly found dead by her husband, Aurelien Boyer, when he returned home from work.

Known and loved by many, the OAP was buried amid tears and tributes.

Ras Kimono: Rub A Dub King Bows Out Under Pressure

Courtesy: Ras Kimono (Facebook)

Part of the loved ones we lost in 2018 is the Rub A Dub King, Ras Kimono who died of a heart attack in Lagos.  Sadly, before we could come to terms with the legendary musician’s demise, we heard the announcement that his wife, Efemena Okedi, had passed on also.

She died just three months after he was laid to rest.

Ras Kimono brought us the Rhumba style and for this, he and his lovely wife will always live on in our memories.

Funke Akindele Welcomes Twins (December 22)

It was a joyful year for actress, Funke Akindele, popularly known as Jenifa as she welcomed a set of twins with her husband, Abdulrasheed Bello, popularly known as JJC Skills.

The news went viral on social media after the actress shared some posts expressing gratitude to God.

Read Also:  Funke Akindele, Husband Welcome Set Of Twins

Funke and her husband got married in 2016 and the twins would be their first together.

Fans and well-wishers took to social media to congratulate the couple.

Concerts

Before we proceed into gigs and concerts, can we all but give it up for Burna Boy who is arguably the number one show stopper for the year 2018.

With ever-growing followership that seems sometimes like the fans practically worship him, Burna Boy lays claims to the throne as king for the year in review.

That said, you can be sure that there’s no better time to unwind than the holiday season when concerts and all the fun-fair is at its peak.

The commercial hub of Nigeria, Lagos in particular, comes alive as the year winds down.

Read Also: Dbanj, Tubaba, Wizkid, Others Thrill Fans At Burna Boy Concert

Although some notable events took place during the course of the year, some of the notable ones include Burna Boy’s concert tagged Burna Live.

The concert took place on December 26, at the EKO Hotel Convention Centre, Victoria Island, Lagos with thrilling performances from top Nigerian artistes including D’banj, Wizkid, Davido and Tubaba.

The ‘Gbona’ sensation performed his hit tracks such as ‘On the Low’, ‘Ye’ and ‘Wo Da Mo’ at the show.

Other concerts were that of Wizkid and Davido.

Top 10 Nollywood Movies People Loved In 2018

 

2018 was yet another big year for Nollywood as the industry continues to get better and better.

With a lot of movies increasingly hitting the big screens and receiving more recognition globally, many say the Nigerian movie industry is now truly coming into its own.

Here are 10 of the most liked and successful movies of the year according to Google’s viewer ratings, in no particular order.

“Merry Men”

 

This movie tells the story of four young men, considered to be Abuja’s most eligible, as well as notorious bachelors.

They have thriving businesses, fast cars, massive homes and the attention of women in no short supply.

While they are known as the Merry Men, the ladies call them the Real Yoruba Demons.

The movie stars, Folarin Falana, Ayo Makun, Ramsey Nouah and Jim Iyke.

Directed by Toka McBaror and produced by Ayo Makun, the movie was released in September 2018 and is liked by 98% of the viewers.

Read Also: 2018: The Year Of Wakanda, Assurance, Fever, And Hard Goodbyes

“New Money”

Starring Jemima Osunde as Toun Odumosu, the movie tells the story of a young lady, who goes from being a shop girl to a billionaire,after her absentee father leaves her his empire to run.

Directed by Tope Oshin, the movie was released in March 2018 and liked by 92% of the viewers.

The star-studded movie features Folarin Falana, Osas Ighodaro, Wofaifada, Daniel Etim Effiong, Adeolu Adefarasin, Kalu Ikeagwu.

“Lion Heart”

Veteran actress Genevieve Nnaji stars in this flick as Adaeze Obiagu, a young lady who has to step up to the challenge when her father is no longer able to handle the company due to health issues.

Her father Ernest Obiagu (Pete Edochie), leaves the company in the hands of an uncle and both of them have to fight to save the company from a huge debt or lose it altogether.

An inspiring drama which addresses issues around family values, succession, and female empowerment, “Lion Heart” marks Nnaji’s directorial debut.

“It highlights the various challenges faced by women, particularly in male-dominated industries,” she told Women and Hollywood.

Online movie streaming platform, Netflix, also announced that it acquired the worldwide rights for the movie.

According to Google, 96% of viewers liked the movie.

“Up North”

This movie tells the story of a young rebellious heir, Bassey Otuekong (Banky Wellington), who is sent to Bauchi for his NYSC assignment as a punishment and as a way of humbling him, while also being groomed to take over his father’s company.

It explores love, friendship and family politics, all of which collide, creating memories to last a lifetime.

Directed by Tope Oshin, the movie features Rahama Sadau, Kanayo O. Kanayo, Adesuwa Etomi Wellington, Hilda Dokubo.

It hit cinemas in December 2018

“Wedding Party 2”

The romantic comedy starring Banky W as (Dozie) and Adesua Etomi as (Dunni) is a sequel to ‘The Wedding Party’, which became a monster hit after its release in December 2017.

The story is about two people genuinely in love and the unnecessary interference of family members as well as the hassles of inter-cultural marriages.

While the first movie explores the flamboyant Nigerian wedding culture, the sequel, which is also full of humour and warmth, captures the concept of destination weddings, which is gradually gaining ground among Nigerians.

The movie has remained a favourite for many, despite being released on December 15, 2017, and is one of the top trending movies of 2018.

Directed by Niyi Akinmolayan, it was liked by 93% of viewers according to Google.

 

“Royal Hibiscus Hotel”

In this romantic comedy, a disillusioned London chef, Opeoluwa (Zainab Balogun), visits Nigeria and struggles with her matchmaking mother as well as in restoring the family’s rundown hotel.

She’s heartbroken as she discovers her new lover, Deji (Keneth Okoli), is working on a deal to buy the hotel.

An Ebony Life Films production, the movie which was directed by Ishaya Bako had its world premiere on September 9, 2017.

It was then officially released in February 2018 and is liked by 94% of the viewers.

“Esohe”

Nigerian Immigrant Gary Barbar (Jimmy Jean-Louis), works as a teacher in the United States and is quite successful.

However, from time to time, he suffers violent flashes of visions and nightmares of a past that he knows nothing about.

His entire life and aspirations eventually hinge on finding the truth and meaning behind the nightmares.

In trying to find answers, he returns home to Benin City but is totally unprepared for the complications that await him.

Esohe, directed by Charles Uwagbai, is an epic film that explores themes of reincarnation, love and the supernatural.

It features Jemima Osunde, Chris Attoh and Toyin Aiyemakun.

“King Of Boys”

This movie follows the story of Alhaja Eniola Salami (Sola Sobowale), a businesswoman and philanthropist with a promising political future.

As her political ambitions see her outgrowing the underworld connections responsible for her considerable wealth, she’s drawn into a power struggle that threatens everything she holds dear.

To come out of this on top, she is caught up in a game of trust and ruthlessness.

The movie was directed by Kemi Adetiba and is her second film after her directorial debut, The Wedding Party.

It was released in October 2018 and is liked by 97% of the viewers.

“Chief Daddy”

The movie tells the story of billionaire industrialist Chief Beecroft, a flamboyant benefactor to a large extended family of relatives, household staff and assorted mistresses.

He lives extravagantly, until the day he dies suddenly and the ‘bullion van’ stops.

“Chief Daddy” also explores the chaos caused by having numerous children from different women who were not aware of the existence of one another, until their father’s death.

Directed by Niyi Akinmoloyan, the movie was released on December 14, 2018.

According to Google, it is liked by 96% of viewers.

“God Calling”

This is a movie that explores themes of faith, spirituality, and self-discovery.

Starring Zainab Balogun, the story looks at the life of a young woman, Sade, her family, and her faith through the lens of an unconventional encounter with God in the modern age.

After suffering a personal tragedy, she is taken on a journey of self-discovery and faith which transforms the lives all those around her.

Directed by BB Sasore, the movie features Karibi Fubara, Nkem Owoh, Richard Mofe Damijo, Tina Mba, Onyeka Onwenu, among others.

It was released in December 2018 and is liked by 100% of the viewers.

 

“Lara And The Beat”

This movie tells a story about the young and beautiful Giwa sisters caught in the center of a financial scandal with their late parents’ media empire.

The sisters are forced out of their privileged bubble, and must learn to build their own future and salvage their family’s past.

Produced by Tosin Coker, the movie was released in July 2018 and it is liked by 94% of the viewers.

Cast: Seyi Shey, Vector, Somkele Iyamma, Sharom Ooja among others.