Review of Shanty Town, a 2023 Netflix Limited Series: A decent work, with room for improvement

Synopsis: In the 6-part limited series, ShantyTown, a group of courtesans attempts to escape the grasp of a notorious kingpin – but political corruption and blood ties make freedom a near-impossible goal.

Advertisements

Shanty Town: The Cast 

  • Richard Mofe-Damijo              
  • Sola Sobowale  
  • Nse Ikpe-Etim     
  • Nancy Isime
  • Lilian Afegbai     
  • Toyin Abraham  
  • Ini Edo      
  • Ali Nuhu   
  • Chidi Mokeme   
  • Peter Okoye       
  • Zubby Michael   
  • Shaffy Bello 
  • Uche Jombo      
  • Regina Daniels   
  • Mercy Eke

The Crew

  • Dimeji Ajibola: Director
  • Taiwo Adebayo: Associate producer
  • Judith Audu: Associate producer / line producer
  • Ini Edo: Executive producer
  • Uche Jombo: Associate producer
  • Chichi Nworah: Executive producer
  • Charles Okonkwo: Executive producer

Review of Shanty Town, a Netflix Limited Series:

Shanty Town: The Review

Shanty Town is an ode to blood, gore, violence, and very little sex, and it shows that Nollywood is truly pushing the envelope. The production focuses on a theme that we have seen quite a bit. A powerful politician is the real brain behind the drugs and prostitution rings in the slums, but 3 episodes in and I was still struggling to understand what the plot is. The use of suspense and mystery is over flogged, and I almost got bored with the build-up.

I am so glad to see Chidi Mokeme; he practically carries the series on his bare back. Ini Edo gives a fair performance, but she is not fully in the flow and her acting seems forced. We love our Zaddy, RMD, but he is not a convincing drug lord. He is too polished for the role. As good as Nse’s acting is, I think should have completely let go of the perfect English. Her upbringing flies in the face of the environment. I understand Ini’s English: she is working undercover. This is Peter Okoye’s debut acting, so, I do not have an opinion yet on his acting, but this outing is not a stellar performance.

Hearing the Ibibio language featured prominently is refreshingly different from the usual, but a lot of the scenes and acting leave a lot of loose threads.

The fight scenes are not totally believable and attempt to replicate Hollywood a little too much. We don’t fight like this. I don’t know if it’s an Indian style of fighting, Chinese or Nigerian.  The costumer gives the Dame such lovely costumes, but Chief Fernadenz’s clothes look too much like Gen Z clothes. He is a respectable member of the society, a chief, his costume ought to reflect it, and those beads on him are too cheap and in a very obvious way.

One of my main challenges with Nollywood movies and series is the fast resolution of conflict. It just grates to have such a long build up and then a rushed resolution. It insults the intelligence of the viewer. Shanty Town does a decent job of not rushing the resolution; however most of the resolution is talked through. This is a decent production, but there is a lot of room for improvement.

Nollyrated Score: 3/5 (Okay Production)

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

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

Join Our Tribe on Twitter: For updates on new Nollywood movies, series, reviews, cinema reviews, and Nigerian movie personalities, join our tribe on Twitter @NollyRated.

6 thoughts on “Review of Shanty Town, a 2023 Netflix Limited Series: A decent work, with room for improvement”

  1. This movie shouldn’t have got the 3 stars. Neither should they do a Season two. I struggled to see the plot and when you are like a cheaper version of KOB, it was like, come on, you can do better.

    Reply
  2. All that you have described is well said 👏.

    But how come no one talks about Mercy Eke’s (Jackie) stellar performance. It almost felt real and I hated having her go off in the movie.

    PS: not a BB fan. It’s just my observation from watching the movie.

    Reply
  3. Yo bro your review is great, I love it a little but for the Chief fernandez costume you said looks like Gen Z’s clothing Would bluntly disagree with you on that. Why not look closely and see the real face behind the costume, this isn’t Peter Okoye’s Debut as well. Go check Lion Heart.

    Reply

Leave a comment