Director: Daniel Emeke Oriahi
Assistant Director: Ronya Man Arts
Producer: Ijeoma Grace Agu
Writer: Gbenga Adesanya
Cast: Kelechi Udegbe, Belinda Effah, Kenneth Okolie, Ijeoma Grace Agu and Rita Edwards
I love a good flick that promises a lot of street madness, a film that strips human beings of advantages, and instead takes inspiration from the less glamorous part of life, “Stranger than Ever” does that. The first few minutes into “Stranger than Ever” seems like a regular story, but the writer twists events and leaves us with an enjoyable film.
Mary (Belinda Effah) is a prostitute and on a night out, a client offends her, she nags through her journey home. Anger makes her abandon her phone in a cab. The taxi driver, Abel (Kelechi Udegbe) picks another client, the client takes the phone.
Fred (Kenneth Okolie) is a bored banker. He is considering quitting his job in the bank. His life is dull and without any social activity, when Abel picks him, he finds Mary’s phone. He picks an incoming call; the call comes from one of Mary’s client who says something that brightens Abel’s day. In need of some entertainment, Abel decides to keep the phone. When Mary calls to get her phone back, Abel gets intrigued by her aggressive approach and decides to meet her.
He calls her with the pseudo name, Sam; they meet up and start an affair. His sole aim is to be entertained, and Mary is all about the money. Perfect match! Things get awkward when he threatens her with a sex tape. As a pastor’s daughter, she does not want this to get out. As the scandal brews; Mary finds out that Sam is not really Sam but Fred. The threat coming from him and the realization that the man she was beginning to like was all in it for revenge, makes her quit prostitution. In the midst of all this Abel serves as the middle man to both of them, while also facing pressure from his wife (Ijeoma Grace Agu)
Stranger than Ever is a well-written story with a social message, romance, as well as comedy. Abel is there to offer some humor while serving as the middle man to both Mary and Fred. The story is well acted, even though Mary’s excuse for being a prostitute is a strange one. She cannot imagine taking the 9-5 job because it will bore her. She needs freedom, she wants to be rebellious and enjoy being adventurous, and prostitution offers her all of that, so she chooses it.
Belinda Effah has acted as a prostitute many times before, but this time around; she will give you a thousand more reasons to love her as an actress, while Kelechi Udegbe will make you question why you have never given his talent more attention. They both sustain the film with great acting. Kenneth Okolie does a good job. He is a strange character in this one. He moves from an unsatisfied man to an excited man and it is intriguing to watch all the gestures he makes in this film.
Stranger than Ever is a great film. Exceptional directing and sustaining dialogue makes this one a must watch.
About the Author
Rejoice Abutsa is a 22-year-old aspiring Filmmaker and a big dreamer. She’s also a ‘Theatre and film’ arts graduate from the University of Jos, Nigeria.