It took another four years. The last time I watched a Nigerian movie which made a lot of sense was in 2008 and that was “Jennifer”. After an interminable wait, I eventually watched “The Figurine”. The movie was worth every second of the wait, it was of the first water, a master piece.

How I usually know that a movie has gotten to me is when it hangs like a sweet mist over the evergreen consciousness of my mind and refuses to dissipate with the winds of time. This flick was that and much more, about top-notch in every department. The blend of Yoruba and English is smooth on the palate of the senses like the taste of Kopi luwak coffee on the tongue (I love movies where traditional languages are mixed with English, they are usually a delightful cocktail).

Paradoxically I found Kunle Afolayan’s languid insouciance refreshing, Omoli Oboli’s uxorial personality was so endearing. I have never been a fan of Ramsey Noah but after seeing the ease with which he metamorphosed from a sick nerd to a stone cold gentleman, I can’t stop doffing my heart. But the butter icing on the cake for me was Funlola Aofiyebi-Raimi; she was like pounded fresh green pepper that makes a meal of fresh palm oil and roasted yam absolutely delicious. Her diction soothes the ossicles like a cool shower on a hot humid day. Needless to say, I fell in love.

The drama was a moving gallery exhibiting African art; I particularly liked the tie and dye “buba and sokoto” that Mr. Afolayan wore when he and Ramsey went into the jungles of Araromire to return the figurine to its resting place. The subtitling was also done pretty well, a resounding message to Nollywood Yoruba movie producers who cannot subtitle their productions to save their lives. I wonder how they are able to thrive in the international market since no one will be able to follow their story lines intelligently. We need to take a cue from other countries like South Korea where an epic/classic like “Jumong” has flawless subtitling.  You don’t have to understand the language to understand its unfolding plot.
The only blip on the scintillating screen of their performance was the club Ramsey and Funlola had their night out. The place was too juvenile and common for such a classy duo.

The figurine could also be likened to a flowing brook filled with precious stones and the nuggets below were some of the gems I panned out of it.

The god araromire was made out of the bark of a cursed tree and it ultimately brings pain to its worshippers after an initial seven years of prosperity.  The earth is cursed and irrespective of how much happiness we get from its endowments, the elation wears off after a while. Sometimes they even bring unhappiness. The euphoria of getting the latest car, phone or the best house in the neighborhood diminishes with time and by seven years might even cause embarrassment compared to the ones that are up to date then. That is why people who manipulate and kill others for earthly gains are so FOOLISH because they will eventually get their comeuppance.

From the onset it was so clear that Omoni Oboli was making the mistake of her life by marrying Kunle Afolayan. They were not compatible; he was too unserious for her. Till tomorrow, I still wonder why everybody but the lady who makes the mistake of marrying the wrong dude can see that she is walking into a dark pit occupied by a black mamba. She lost her life for that mistake. How many ladies keep losing their limbs, lives, destiny for this error? It is quite disheartening!
The flippancy with which ladies get into relationships with guys they don’t know diddly squat about the way Funlola Raimi threw herself at Ramsey Noah is mindboggling. This rush in the name of an increasing age number is as foolish as a prospector leaving everything he has acquired in a life time for an imaginary gold rush and ending up with nothing but sand trickling through his fingers. For some it’s like committing suicide at twilight after waiting for so many years with your knight in shining armour galloping in to see you dead at dawn. It is not worth it. Ask Funlola Raimi, she almost paid with her life for the desperation of having a marriage ring on her finger.

What was wrong with my brother Ramsey Noah, why could he not just go for the ring of the Saturn of his heart? He watched the light of the castle of his affection dim without trying to ignite her fire. His love rode into the sunset with another man until all he had in his embrace was the cold feeling of regret. For crying out loud, what makes some homies not go after the ladies they love? Ramsey’s inaction was what led to all the trouble in the first place. This is not just all about love though, in every area of life, please folks, let’s seize the day! CARPE DIEM!

One other thing that struck me was how the Afolayans ran from pillar to post in search of a solution to the problems plagueing them but could not zero in to the panacea of liberation. That’s is so typical of life where dehydrated people settle for dwindling streams of brackish water instead of slaking their thirst with the crystal clear Spring of living waters.

But most importantly, what kind of god will make its people flourish for seven years of plenty, then destroy them. That is how the gods of this world are; they give with one hand and collect with another. They are evil and mean, ugly and wicked. They demand for human sacrifices, feed on blood and revel in destruction. Thankfully our God is not like that. He drips with love, his affection for us is overwhelming, all His gifts are good and perfect. An ancient Hebrew king said the Lord is good and he doeth good. His mercies endure forever. His thoughts towards us are precious, we can never number them, and beside them the numbers of the sands on the seashore seem countable. While others seek for the sacrifice of their followers, He readily sacrificed Himself. Behold what manner of love this King has for us. It is totally amazing. What great devotion from He who is so uncontainable that He can never be captured by a figurine.



28 thoughts on “THE FIGURINE

  1. Now I have to see this movie that made such an impression on my kindred! I hear you but how come I am the oloyinbo when I have to use Google to understand your writing? What I mean is, poetic for the educated mind…..iLike!


  2. This is beautiful! Most especialy that part were u mentioned……. while other gods seek d sacrifice of their followers our king laid dwn his 4 us! So amazing


  3. i never watch Nigerian movies.Last one i voluntarily watched after much persuasion by a friend,was Mainframe's Thunderbolt(Magun).In that interval,i have come across a lot of IQ-lowering rubbish tagged movies.Figurine……class….quality


  4. 1st time i've seen ur blog, and I would just like to ask….who is your target audience?

    Despite all the years I have spent in law school dissecting journals and statues, I still had 2 look at the dictionary in an attempt to confer the intended meaning of your language. Thus, I can only wonder how the general public would understand it.

    As Azubbie said, great writing, but not so great read, i didn't enjoy going back n forth to look at the dictionary!


  5. Thanks for your contribution Sir. I would look into it. But my take is that life is also about learning new things. The words i use today were words i learnt yesterday through someone's speech or another's book. I might be wrong though and stand to be corrected. Thanks once again.


  6. Excellent write-up my fellow medic. For me, you join a growing list of medics who heal with both the art of our profession and their excellent command of the written English language. Keep it up…and now I must watch that movie!


  7. I'm not so sure what this piece was; a good write up, an easy read, a personal perspective or a professional critic of the movie? If its a perspective perspective, then I get it; its basically the angles from which you see the movie, the areas that allign with morality etc. But if this was a professional critic, I must say it did a very poor job indeed. For one; no one wants to read a journal with an oxford dictionary and for two; it failed to do any literary justice to the profession of literary criticing on a movie. Asides all that, you seem to have applauded the efforts of Kunle Afolayan good justice if in comparison to the truckload of injustice our movies does to the efforts of likes like him.


  8. That was a wonderful preview! You've really changed people's minds about some yoruba films and i hope this would motivate them for better performances. Pls don't mind my text it's incompared to urs!


  9. I am not a professional critic ooo. i don't know diddly squat about the profession of literary criticism. Like you said it is a flow from a personal perspective. Thank you for your take.


  10. An outstanding share! I have just forwarded this onto a friend who was conducting
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  12. Hello Dr. Swag, I’m not a film watcher but you’ve just piqued my interest in the film. Thanks for this brilliant, really expository piece. Liking it in more ways than one. Thumbs up Doc.


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