Director- Biodun Stephen
Producers- Toyin Abraham
Writer- Joy Isi Bewaji
Cast- Mercy Johnson, Toyin Abraham, Jim Iyke, Kunle Idowu, Bayray McNwizu, Ken Erics, Sola Sobowale and Akin Lewis.
After my first search for a feel-good movie ended with disappointment from Lara and the Beat, I gave another new Nollywood movie the chance. I walked into the cinema hall to watch Seven and Half Dates reluctantly and I must say, it wasn’t half bad as the latter movie.
Seven and a Half Dates follows the life of young, hardworking lady, Bisola (Mercy Johnson) who is engrossed in her passion for her career and finds herself in a seemingly unending quest for love. Her father, Mr. Gomez (Akin Lewis) comes to the rescue and inspired by the game of chess, sets Bisola up on ten different dates which he hopes one of them will yield a good prospect.
Just the thought of having a father hook his daughter up especially in our Nigerian setting, which isn’t the norm as father’s usually leave that sort of worry to the mothers to handle, was a welcome perspective. Not only did he try to hook her up with 10 dates, he also wanted to know the details and feedback after every date now isn’t that a nosey and involved dad.
The story was unique and resonated well in the room as we watched with kin interest, Mercy going on her dates trying to align with her dad, back pedal on some of her standards and make her old man happy. Her potential suitors where a mix of the downright crazy, talkative and smelly mouth. Mercy played ball, going for a fitting, makeup and hair, she took her time to meet the suitors arranged for, however Mercy in search of a suitor seemed out of place and not believable especially her facial expressions. The costumes did nothing to change that stance as she looked more like a fish outside water than the character we were interested in.
Enter Jim Ikye, and all the other cast members that where meant to prove to us, that the grass is typically not greener on the other side. Jim brought his lover boy moves of yester years back and he didn’t disappoint, some of his lines seemed improvised or maybe just inaudible, as his jokes fell flat, but he seems sweet and welcome. There were some awwww, moments from me during the scenes of them getting to know each other. But they took me back to the hay Nollywood days where to get to know someone was to go to a beach and have the love run around.
The adamant sister and mother played by Bayray McNwizu and Sola Sobowole, felt like the writers were trying to hard to cash in on a different plot while dealing with one however, their aim didn’t seem out of place as it tied nicely together. Once daught searching for love another trying to die for it.
While the production held it down on the story front, I can’t say the same for some of the scenes and grammatical sentences. Some scenes seemed to drag on and inevitable began to bore me, while sentences/language especially during the fitting scene and some of the suitor scenes made me wonder if the editor was paying any attention as they could have been easily picked and corrected.
My search was complete for a feel-good movie, Naija style even though it struggled with it gremlins and sentences, but for its story, the movie earns a 5/10 from Xplorenollywood.
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