Igba Ewa starts on an inquisitive note and keeps up the suspense till the end. After the first five or so scenes, the viewer still doubts what the storyline is; and this is what drives this thriller.

Having honed their acting skills over the years, players like Fathia Balogun, Muyiwa Ademola, Laide Bakare, and Idowu Phillip put up good accounts of themselves in this work.

The character, Bolu, in a bid to discover the true nature of the occupation of her husband (Tade), is ‘lovebeaten’-as opposed browbeaten-into becoming an important ‘tool’ in the business. Initially resenting her assigned role, she tries to convince her mother about the need for a divorce by telling a fabricated story. But Bolu’s mother insists that her daughter’s society wedding, once the talk of the town, must not be tainted by divorce.

Tade and his associates have it all good until one of them, Badmus, goes all religious and wants out of the business. This does not go down well with the gang and they set Bolu after him.

Tade’s family think the world of him, and blame Bolu for the apparent childlessness of the couple. The family is bent on making her life miserable. Bolu’s mother, on the other hand, consults the water priestess in the hope of ensuring her daughter conceives. She is shocked to discover that Bolu is not interested in becoming a mother just yet.

There are some comedic scenes to offset the shadowy tone of the movie, but they do not distract from the theme.

The first pass mark for this film is that it is one of the few Nigerian movies made compact in a single VCD, with no sequel; this is a credit to its focused editing.

The picture quality is good; however, it could have been better, and the producers could take a leaf from Tunde Kelani’s Mainframe pictures.

Unlike the average Nigerian movie, Igba Ewa does not start off by showing loads of movie trailers which take up much viewing time; still, there is a spate of previews of other films from Corporate Pictures’ stable, on disc 2.

The English subtitling was well done, with relatively few grammatical errors. However, the VCD version carried no warning against piracy, which comes across as a tad amateurish. The English version of Igba Ewa should have been translated as ‘The Calabash of Beauty’ rather than ‘The Make-up Kit.’

Although the film has a hurriedly-put-together feel to it which shows more in the last scenes, it is nonetheless a good choice for family viewing. It might also be a good cautionary tale for ladies in the dating phase.

This is a good film to keep on the lower shelf for people to refer to from time to time, because of its advisory import.