A movie that lacks, inspiration, motivation, wit, direction and basic sense of reasoning – could we say it was almost depressing? Did it give the society a reason to reason? Directed by Daniel Ehimen, ‘Sergeant Tutu’ tried to be satirical in nature.
After a long day with a lot of work done and more to be done, we at the Crithood decided to go see a movie. At the box office, we singled out ‘Sergeant Tutu’; one of the most captivating posters so far this year. It got us wondering if it was going to be another Nollywood attempt at a ‘wanna be’ James Bond movie. Apparently, we were wrong to have thought so, not necessarily in a manner you feel or perceive, trust me, I will get to it soon.
Walking majestically into the theatre, we soon realized it was going to be a sort of private screening as not one soul was found inside the theatre, we took our favourite seats of course as we had a multiple of choices to choose from. Eventually, the movie began and these three friends strolled in all excited to see the movie, only to leave in annoyance long before the credits could roll. They severally spoke loud, saying “Why would they allow this movie on their cinema screen?” they asked, but we laughed, as a wise man once said life is Comedy for those who think and Tragedy for those who feel. Well, this movie was neither here nor there, not necessarily attaching importance to whether it falls to the latter or former, rather to the fact that these individuals didn’t know what or how to feel towards the movie.
A potentially good story, if only it was scripted by a good hand. Although, this takes nothing away from the unique prose style adapted into film, as it took a narrative form, through the presence of an omniscient voice that told the story from time to time. The scenes were divided into chapters with individual unique titles that introduce each set of scenes. It didn’t do wrong for a bad beginning, as they tried to make it fun and engaging. So unfortunate that this attempt only had effects for just a couple of minutes.
One could refer to this movie as a failed attempt at a satire but in all honesty, one could also say the message was faintly perceived but not achieved, as the theme of the movie, dealt with ridiculing the level of Corruption in the society, even at homes where corruption should be referred to as a bastard child, The Nigeria Police in particular. Down to the lives of the everyday man is the theme of Greed. This greed that has taken over the mind of the masses so much that they begin to engage in all sorts of antics in an attempt to make ends meet, as a result of the poor economic situation. People taking to arms and becoming false prophets who device means to con people of their earnings all in the name of salvation.
Moving on, anyone would wonder why these friends from earlier were so appalled by this movie, even before getting the message. Well, this was majorly due to the fact that the picture quality of the movie was not the best. It could have been sold as content to a television station or a cable network, anywhere but for a cinema screen. The lead Sergeant Tutu himself, tried to be funny, although scored a few points here and there, but overall slapstick, which may not necessarily be bad in the real sense itself, if it conformed to the style intended, only that in this case, it was comedy trying to be forced. The script itself had a problem of dramaturgy, as it was unnecessarily long and the lines lacked wit and the subtle comic effect a satiric work would live as an impression in one’s mind.
A particular dialogue got me thinking, when a man refers to his child as ‘Pikin’, does that word automatically qualify the child as a ‘Son’? In plain words, the script writer had a message to pass, but the delivery was not good enough for the style intended. The sound tracks were predictable and over used, frankly it sounded nothing different from those in our so called ‘Home Videos’. The lights were shaky, making it feel like an extremely low budget production. Some of the sets were over utilized, as in the case of the unfinished building. The story presented our Police as hungry, desperate, disloyal, undisciplined, under paid, greedy and self-righteous, to say the least. Which are not necessarily lies, but is that always the case?
This review can go on and on pointing out these errors, but these would be of no use as we have already reached our verdict. This movie was not depressing. True, it lacked a clear sense of direction, inspiration in terms of screening, motivation in terms of message, a reason to reason as it lacked the foundation of which a satire is built. Maybe it did not lack a basic sense of reasoning, only that the reasoning could be more elementary, more like the base needs more base. It is not a must watch, definitely not good enough for the pedestal at which it was placed and of course a failed attempt at a satire.