Movie Review: Ijogbon (2023) on Netflix is a good story that is weak in the telling

Synopsis: In Ijogbon, four teenagers from a rural village in Southwest Nigeria stumble upon a pouch of uncut diamonds, but before long, others come looking for the bounty.

The Cast 

  • Fawas Aina                 
  • Ebiesuwa Oluwaseyi                  
  • Ruby Akubueze                
  • Kayode Ojuolape      
  • Yemi Shodimu                  
  • Yemi Solade                     
  • Bimbo Manuel                  
  • Sam Dede        
  • Femi Branch      
  • Femi Adebayo                 
  • Gabriel Afolayan       
  • Funky Mallam                   
  • Bolaji Amusan                   
  • Tana Adelana                  
  • Adunni Ade

The Crew

  • Directed by – Kunle Afolayan  
  • Produced by – Kunle Afolayan
  • Written by – Tunde Babalola 
Ikohbon, a 2023 movie on Netflix

The Review

I enjoyed Ijogbon, but it is not up to the usual standard we have known to expect from Kunle Afolayan. I kept waiting for the Ijogbon to fully start, but it didn’t until almost one hour into the movie. It took too long establishing the plot and background. There is a good mix of veterans and new actors, but there is not a lot of chemistry between the actors. A lot of the acting is disjointed.

The story is straight forward, but the telling and acting leaves you wondering if something is missing. The village where the story happens is a throwback to the eighties, but why are they buying iPhone 13? How is the chief, who is a trader, allowed to display guns with his thugs?

The story surrounding the diamonds itself is watery. The plot is not tight, and the old woman telling the story appears to have no actual place in the movie.

The quirks and mannerisms given to some of the veteran actors appear not to sit well on them. The young actors give their best and they are a delight to watch. However, I do not understand Adunni Ade’s acting in this movie.  Of course, Gabriel eats his role for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert. Yemi Solade is a veteran, but his acting in this movie appears to not have the ‘it’ factor.

Yemi Sodimu is one of the best actors in Nigeria, but the role given to him does not sit well, and his mannerism of speaking outlandish grammar in the wrong circumstances does not have the comedic effect it should have. Bimbo Manuel as the king is a great cast and he executes his role flawlessly.

The search and rescue scenes are totally chaotic, and appear forced, but I enjoyed the ending where the children and the Chinese man got their stories together and successfully deceived the whole town.

One thing I have noticed recently is the new wave of soapboxing in movies – moralizing and forcing lessons. It is in JagunJagun; it is Agensikole; and now Ijogbon. I don’t think there is any need to force a moral lesson in every movie. The hallmark of great movies is for the viewers to deduce their lessons from it.

NollyRated Score for Ijogbon

Score: 3/5 (Okay Movie)

NollyRated uses a 5-level scoring system, as follows:

  1. Poor
  2. Sub Par
  3. Okay
  4. Great
  5. Outstanding

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