Movie Review; ‘Alter Ego’ Has A More Powerful Message Than The Hyped Sex Scenes
The much talked about Alter Ego is finally out and we have gone to see it. We are sad however to announce that it came with a pinch of disappointment. Two things made me anticipate this movie, Omotola, and the hyped sex scenes both which failed to impress me. But what annoyed me more was the fact that the producers of this movie thought it wise to create a buzz around the sex scenes rather than the deeper message it had.
Alter Ego tells the story of Ada Igwe (Omotola Jjalade), a lawyer and activist t who would hold no bars in her quest for justice. Abused by her teacher at a young age, she fights in and out of court to ensure child molesters are punished for their crimes. However, she is still fighting the demons that came along with her abuse. She has an uncontrollable urge for sex and tries to find redemption by paying them off but life isn’t always just black and white. She finds love in the arms of philanthropist Mr. Timothy (Wale Ojo), little did she know that he was part of the demons she has been trying to fight.
Directed by Moses Iwang, this movie has a beautiful story. Dark yes, but its beauty comes with the way it was told. The after effects of rape and the demons survivors have to fight. we see that sometimes not every fight is won. But we all find ways to survive. Ada Igwe found her coping mechanism in having control over who she decides to sleep with. This story successfully breaches the barrier that we have so much found difficult to break or talk about. It exploits the vulnerability, betrayal and emotional struggle that rape survivors face. these are issues we should tackle head on.
As with many other movies, Alter Ego failed to pay attention to details. The shabby dressing of Ada Igwe in her legal regalia. We see the collars of her shirt out many a time. Her makeup running as she cries. The character under development too was a big set back for this movie. We are introduced to Mr. Timothy and Ada Igwe’s romance in a ridiculous way. He supposedly made her a better person but we do not see how. There was a big plot hole in the story of Aisha and the hostel/hotel incidence. The pictures she provided as evidence. A little rewrite should have wrapped that up nicely.
Some scenes dragged on for so long. Why was the walk into the school made dramatic? The slow motion effect that was used built up an anticipation that was not fulfilled. The sex scenes were supposed to be raunchy and dark. But, all we get is a glimpse of Daniel (Kunle Remmy) butt and the gardener’s groin. Do not misinterpret me. They were well executed, yes but the hype around it prepared us for something more powerful.
Alter Ego would have ended with a perfect scene. Ada finally meets the man who abused her and is left without closure. This scene had Ada Igwe on her knees, hands outstretched towards the sky. Until that scene dragged on for too long. I was almost expecting her to burst into a cry for help song. The last scene where Daniel and Ada’s sister walks in with a gun was totally unnecessary. If the intention was to make us angry then the job was well done.
Two characters that stood out in this movie was Jide Kosoko and Tina Mba. Jide did a lot in the few scenes he appeared in with his facial expressions. I keep saying Tina Mba is being under utilized in Nollywood. She dazzles in every single role she takes. Giving it the right attitude and emotion. Omotola gives us an average performance here. Nothing we haven’t seen before. Wale Ojo is comfortable and does little to get out of his comfort zone. Ada’s sister staggers with her lines and unimpressive performance. A little more coaching would have helped the girls who testified against Mr. Timothy. In all, there is something intriguing about the girl who played Aisha. I want to see more of her.
Alter Ego may have failed to impress me but it does highlight the fact that most sexual offenders do not get convicted. It brings to the fore that we should be aware of the issues that plague our society. Rape survivors have their demons to face. Not everyone is able to pass through such trauma and not need help. Parents should be more watchful and yes we should be more human.
I wish Alter Ego had an end that would leave survivors with closure, with answers. It provides no solution to their trauma. This leaves you with the taste of half done food.