If the aim of Eyin Oka (cobra’s fang), is to discourage viewers who expect much from it because of the quality of Nollywood artists it parades, it succeeds.
Funsho Adeolu, Lere Paimo, Saheed Balogun, Taiwo Hassan and Abiola Adebayo are some of the renowned artists in this film which also features popular Igbo actress, Patience Ozokwor. Her presence, though, does little for the film once the excitement of her acting in a Yoruba flick wears off.
Filled with suspense and subtitled in English, Eyin Oka pokes fun at desperate people who resort to money rituals in their bid to become rich. Chief Afilaka (Lere Paimo), an elderly man mismanages official money by spending it recklessly in his effort to blend with his super rich friends.
He gets into trouble and turns to the same friends to bail him out. They offer him a way out of his predicament by offering him full membership into their money-making cult. Everything comes with a price and Afilaka is charged accordingly.
Patience Ozokwor, who plays a prominent role in the movie as a gluttonous Yoruba mother, executes her role well; she even speaks passable Yoruba to boot! Ozokwor points her daughter in the wrong direction but enjoys the proceeds from the girl’s activities.
She goes as far as twisting the meaning of the Yoruba proverb, ‘Ohun ti a ba fi ara sise fun, lo n pe l’owo eni’ which means one enjoys the proceeds from a job s/he sweats over, to encourage her daughter to prostitute.
A plus for this movie is the absence of previews of other films usually advertised at the beginning of Nigerian movies. Some are shown before Eyin Oka ends though.
Apart from the scene transitions not being smooth, the poor picture quality obvious mostly in night scenes detracts from Eyin Oka. Its suggestion that there is something sinister behind ordinary jobs like being a cobbler, commercial bus driver and food vendor is also a fallacy.
The film also seems to unknowingly reinforce some people’s belief that artworks are evil by portraying a particularly beautiful sculpture as a tool used by ritualists.
While the general background music is irritating, the music accompanying some horror scenes is quite pleasing unlike that used in other Nollywood horror scenes.
The decision of the movie producer to incorporate an Igbo presence in the film by using Igbo costume generously is a step in the right direction. The fact that not a word of Igbo is spoken however is a shame.
Furthermore, the two part movie which runs for two hours, forty-five minutes exasperates more than it entertains. Besides its badly thought out theme, the good acting skills of the artists is not enough to save Eyin Oka.
-By Ireyimika Oyegbami