Every time a Nigerian Movie makes it to Netflix, it definitely garners high expectations from viewers. When I saw ‘The Man of God’ and its dazzling trailer, I immediately got into a frenzy. I saved the date and started waiting. Needless to say, the trailer is a masterpiece. The movie? Not so much. Don’t get me wrong, if you’re looking for a good ‘Nollywood’ movie to see, this movie is good. The movie beats a lot of movies and you’re not going to see any annoying Ramsey Nouah Cameo in it. But let’s get into the details of why ‘The Man of God’ got ruined in its glory.
Release date: April 16, 2022
Runtime: 1hour, 51 minutes.
Location: Lagos, Nigeria.
Director: Bolanle Austen-Peters.
Cast: Akah Nnani, Osas Ighodaro, Atlanta Bridget Johnson, Patrick Doyle, Jude Chukwuka, Shawn Faqua, Dorcas Shola Fapson, Olamide Oworu, Eucharia Anunobi, Prince Nelson Enwerem, Mawuli Gavur, and Ayo Mogaji.
If you have not seen this movie, there may be spoilers ahead!
The Plot: A Great Story, Shoddy Execution
The plot of ‘The Man of God’ is nearly almost biblical, the Prodigal son, leaves home, enjoys the world and when it bites him where it hurts, he returns home and begs his father. Well, that’s almost it in this movie too. The movie follows the life of the protagonist Samuel, (Akah Nnani) the first son of an elderly renowned prophet. Due to a harsh upbringing from his father, the prophet who has set expectations for his son; he runs away from home and begins to live his own life. In the middle of that life, he finds himself wallowing having constantly made one poor decision after another and it leads him to
Just like in the Bible, the main character has a brother too.
Samuel’s upbringing is considered harsh because, for every time he failed to meet the expectations of his father, his father beat him. You know that kind of beating where your mother will have to step in, so you don’t meet your maker. Samuel’s father did not hesitate to change it for him. And after a few scenes, we meet the adult Samuel (Yes, we have made a time jump!), who for some reason is making music reminiscent of Fela. And the movie does not fail to point that out, from being called “AbamiTo dressing the part, to even performing like the OG afrobeat legend, Akah Nnani plays the role and it suits him. Apparently, Samuel is in University and is skipping classes to sing and dance with the first woman we see in his life (romantically) ‘Rekya’. (Dorcas Shola Fapson)
That’s not all Samuel and Rekya are doing sha. They are knocking boots and Rekya seems like the money plug in Samuel’s life. At this point, Rekya’s financial contribution to their dynamic Bonnie and Clyde situationship is not officially defined. At least not yet. Calm down small. But Rekya is definitely the fast-money woman.
A little after the performance we meet Tej (Osas Ighodaro) who later introduces Sam to Joy who is a church girl and, the bad boy falls for the good girl. One thing leads to another and the two are in love. Joy graduates and for a few months, Sam loses contact with her. Did I say that Sam has refused to go back home, despite letters from his mother? That happens too. This one is sha mentioned in a few scenes and his anger towards his parents is something that I feel should have been explored more. A road not traveled? Maybe. Anyways back to the gist. Apparently, Joy had gotten married to Pastor Zach Agu (Mawuli Gavor) who as we all know is the same guy in every movie. He has the official uniform of pastors on. A tie and a tightly fitting suit.
You might be wondering where Rekya is? Rekya had somehow purchased a house from one of her many mysterious deals and offered it to Sam. Then she said she was going abroad to live the good life. I think Rekya deserves a spinoff. Nothing would hit better than seeing Dorcas Shola Fapson enjoying on a yacht and flexing. Anyways, Rekya goes abroad while Sam is loving up. When Joy runs off and Sam finds out that Pastor Agu had married the love of his life, he goes into some sort of depression. But he is not alone for long as Tej finds him in his room. She helps him recover as they pray together and go to school and he begins to live again.
(Big Time Jump)
Teju and Sam are married. Thanks to whatever magic, we can all believe that Sam has graduated with some sort of Degree. New cast members are showing up, Nonso (Shawn Faqua) who is obviously cast for appearances is looking good. This guy should have some sort of lead role in a movie soon. Eucharia Anunobi also shows up as the wife of the General Overseer of the ministry where Sam is their music minister. Sam has not left his musical genius in the world as he brings it into the body of Christ. Only this time it’s Davido’s ‘E choke’ that he is peddling in church.
Mummy GO is definitely not pleased and she voices concerns about the music he makes. Samuel throws a tantrum and continues his way. The said Reverend is played by Patrick Doyle. For some weird reason, Samuel is investigated by the church over sexual misconduct, next thing we see is Samuel telling someone to terminate a pregnancy and the next thing we know, the babe is dead. Shoddy execution but okay. The babe sha sends a letter to Samuel over the abortion and Teju receives it. Teju doesn’t show Samuel but she is aware.
Rekya comes back to the country and links up with Samuel, who tells her the problem with ministering in the church, then Rekya advises him to start his own church. She offers him capital and said the business is lucrative. Soon enough, Samuel starts his own church and Rekya ensures constant availability of cash flow. Life is good. Samuel becomes one of those shiny ‘gods of men’ and crowds throng his church as he preaches at the ‘Vineyard of Love’.
But like with everything about this movie, something happens, that we did not see and Samuel’s brother shows up to inform him that their mother has passed on. Maybe he mourned that we did not see him oh, but from what I saw, Oga moved on. Joy resurfaces with her husband, and aside from the fact that they have not aged, Pastor Zach Agu is no longer a pastor. So, we’re back to having the same Mawuli Gavor in every movie, playing himself with a different name. Pastor Samuel begins to make moves towards Joy but she rejects him. A while later, Samuel gets a call that Rekya has passed on and she was participating in human trafficking and that his name was mentioned. He has a big fight with Tej and says he is done with the marriage and finally he gets arrested (We don’t know if it was for abortion, or human trafficking or everything, but he gets arrested)
The movie ends with Samuel returning to his father looking tattered, the prodigal son looks older, as the only person that aged throughout the film.
That’s the end.
- The Casting is amazing, first of all, young Samuel is played by the same actor who plays young Alechenu in Africa Magic’s Ajoche. The Adult version of both Characters is played by Akah Nnani.
- Akah Nnani made headlines as the Nollywood actor who took a placard to church when Fatoyinbogate (That’s what I want to call it) happened. Acting as flashy blinged up pastor would have come natural to him.
- Eucharia Anunobi came through and did her thing! In case you don’t know, Mummy GO in the movie is a real-life pastor but she came through with her old school persona and brought her vibe.
- The Story:
- The idea was good no doubt. The execution was a problem but we definitely needed a movie that was in line with a pastor’s perspective. Particularly one that would not be accused of ‘Traumatising’ anybody considering how much heat the Mount Zion guys are taking over Trauma. Plus, this one gives us a break from the blood money movie crew.
- The acting
- Akah Nnani did not come to play, neither did Dorcas Shola Fapson. True, Mawuli was just acting like himself in the whole flick but aside from his bit, these actors ate!
- Their daddy! This one looked good. My tailor is currently working. Peter Jev Collection 2022 becauseeee… This was litty.
- Aging: How is nobody getting old? Okay, Samuel had a younger sibling that showed up with a beard and Samuel that was flexing different kinds of joint beard so it probably meant he was aging, nobody else aged. When Joy and Pastor Zach returned years after to meet Sam as a pastor, they didn’t age. And because of the constant time jumps, we don’t even know how long it took but for some reason, nobody got old.
- Mawli was Mawuli-ing: I was hurt. How does this guy get cast for doing the same roles in every movie. Oga just needs to be himself and everything works.
- Time jumps: Please can we be calming down? Our imagination was doing more work when seeing this one than it should have. One minute we are here, the next minute, something happened, and boom we are someone else. I was tired at some point. One minute Pastor was arrested, the next minute, big beard, the next minute, repentance. Some people go to jail and don’t repent, couldn’t we have gotten a scene with introspection or something?
7/10. The Man of God is a good movie to watch once and forget about it. It doesn’t give you a second invite on the rollercoaster again. However, the constant time leaps give room for Spinoffs and new stories that can be made better. Bonus point awarded for the absence of a Ramsey Nouah/Richard Williams Cameo.
“The Man of God” is exclusively streaming on Netflix.