#Nollywood Movie Review: The Grave Dust

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Clara (Amaka Chukwujekwu) ditches Johnson Okwuozo (Ramsey Noah) after her sister pronounces that Johnson’s family is accursed because members of the family die in their prime.  Her marriage to Jordan (Joseph Benjamin) is constantly menaced by a ghost, which is invisible to everyone else, but Clara.

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It is pleasant surprise to see Emeka Edokpayi, the mortician, and Emeka Okoro, Chijioke – the ghost, after donkey years.  Clara and her sister bear a resemblance to each other just like Chijioke and Johnson – good casting.

Ikechukwu Onyeka (Mr. and Mrs.) now seems to have a knack for stories, in which people are haunted by spooks.  However, the narratives (The Duplex and Grave Dust) are trivial round and hardly enliven the viewer contrary to the very nature of thrillers.  Worse still, the screenplay for Grave Dust is appalling – laced with constructions that fail to maintain the integrity of the English language, the chosen language for telling the story.  Apart from the fact that tenses are incorrectly used; simple words like concern, concerned, listen, death and anything are wrongly pronounced.

The visual effect during the inferno is not convincing in any way.

In Grave Dust, Onyeka serves his audience a film that not only moves at snail’s pace, but one that has been told time and again.  The characters and situations created by the screenwriter are very familiar: an overbearing mother who interferes with her son’s choice of wife; a grown man who is tied to his mother’s apron strings and a marriage which, like every other, faces challenges, but one where the people involved think that parting ways and remarrying is the best solution to the problems they face.

Most followers of Nollywood are constantly in search of fascinating films that will thoroughly entertain them and also task their imaginations at the same time.  Indeed, there are a couple of horror flicks and thrillers that fit this bill.  People were thrilled by Diamond Ring (RMD, Liz Benson, Bimbo Akintola, Teju Babyface), a 1998/99 Tade Ogidan movie on a young man whose life is immensely threatened after he joins a secret cult in the university.  Granted that there is nothing new under the sun, Diamond Ring was preceded by at least two other Nollywood films on secret cults in universities: Another Campus Tale and Rampage.  However, Diamond Ring told its story remarkably well.

Recently, Eric Aghimien directed A Mile from Home; another movie on savagery in universities; whose greatest strength lies in the visual effects that show the distressing violence these young people mete out to their rivals.  A Mile from Home probably has the best visual effects ever seen in a Nollywood film.

Amaka Igwe’s To Live Again (Uche Macaulay, Nobert Young, Stella Damasus, John Njamah, Fred Aseroma) is another 1999 thriller, in which a typical story of infidelity is turned into a monster hit.  Who will forget Aquila Njamah’s The Untold (Emeka Ike, Hank Anuku), where a pastor with powers from the occult unleashes mayhem on unwary victims?

Therefore, Grave Dust woefully falls below expectations in almost every regard.

Amarachukwu Iwuala

Amarachukwu Iwuala

A writer ... in pursuit of excellence

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