TRENDING: This Nigerian Movie On Netflix Is A MUST WATCH

When I saw the movie poster for “Black Rose”, I instantly made my predictions. However, if this were some sort of betting game I would have lost woefully.

After I saw the poster on Netflix, I assumed the movie would be about a girl who ‘suffers’ and then makes it in life. Rose, played by Lilian Echelon, had this innocent look that makes you think of the slum and the suffering in its wake.

And a typical Naija movie would always take the slum girl from grass to grace-dom. So, let’s say I was yawning even before I started…I guess I yawned too soon. Being an Africa magic snub does that to you and it takes a great story, fantastic cast, and top-notch cinematography to keep my type glued to a TV Screen.

Also, growing up in the ‘watch out for part 5’ era makes you a somewhat snub of all things Nolly. But over the years, filmmakers have taken the crown and placed it back on their heads.

If you’re like me then you most likely read the synopsis of movies first. That’s what I did after checking out the poster.

Black Rose Synopsis: Rose has a firm understanding of the virtuous woman as imparted by her mother, not so practiced by her sister. Her desire for a better life without selling her dignity seems to be in the person of Desmond, a man she fell in love with at first sight regardless of their differences. He introduces her to everything he knows rather untimely and before she can stop herself, she is wrapped in his world, a place she would rather not be.

One thing that came to mind instantly was my old Nollywood favourite ‘World Apart’. It was about a village girl who is taken to the city where she meets a Prince who falls in love with her. After all the obstacles they face, they eventually live happily ever after.

This was a Nigerian fairy-tale that still resonates in many minds. So, reading the synopsis of Black Rose made it seem like a remake of World Apart. However, I was shamed! This shame of mine is not to be spoken of but written, hence the purpose of this review of Black Rose – the movie.

Black Rose Review

The movie begins with this bubbly plot that has you on a high. Beyond all the prostitute sister drama, your sole focus stays on Rose (Lilian Echelon) who has a crush on Desmond (Blossom Chukwujekwu).

Her innocence is so evident, yet you can’t help but foresee disaster ahead. There’s always that cold splash of reality in any jolly movie – especially one set in the slum.

What’s to come of love between the daughter of a local food seller, and a dark, handsome and rich man? But despite how cliché direction this beginning seemed to be headed, the second half of the film just throws you off balance.

Even when you try to guess what Desmond’s true intentions are in the beginning, nothing prepares you for what it eventually is. The story writing and interpretation technique were really impressive.

Another hook in the movie was the cast. There’s nothing like terrible acting to cause you to lose interest but from the opening scene, I thought, “Yo! These people can act.”

There was a bit R-rated scene in the early stage that threw me off because I was watching it with my family. It was just one of those awkward moments where you start checking your phone to divert your attention so your mom doesn’t question your morales. If you have kids around, there’s no moral lesson in this scene plixx, just send them on some errand until it ends. It was probably 30 seconds of shenanigans in the bush between a mechanic and the prostitute sister – I wouldn’t know.

Blossom Chukwujekwu aka Desmond aka Demon

Although I’m not a big fan of Blossom Chukwujekwu, I was willing to watch the movie because Ebele Okaro’s name was on the poster. Ladies, gentlemen, and dear Blossom, I take it back. This man can act o! Not to give too much away, he played the character “Desmond”, a man who looks like a sheep but ends up being the wolf. For lack of better words to describe this character, I would opt for ‘Demon’ even if Mr. Desmond doesn’t like being referred to as one.

I actually feel my skin crawl when I recall the glare Desmond was fond of giving. Initially, I figured he was just a mentally deraigned man after I realized he wasn’t so angelic anymore. Then I thought he was a paedophile, but Desmond is just a Demon.

Betty Bellor and JKA Swanky in Black Rose

Two other characters that surprised me big time were Betty Bellor and JKA Swanky. I had no idea who Betty was until I watched the movie – I honestly still don’t. But she will forever remember as that sister who I underrated but got to respect. Her acting was anything but pretentious. She has a way of getting you to believe every word she says. It was no surprise she sold me on her role.

Last but not least is JKA Swanky. He is best known for his portrayal of Nnamdi Okeke in Living in Bondage. However, if you decided the watch Black Rose expecting a Nnamdi-related character then don’t bother. JKA Swanky played the role of the mechanic with a crush on Rose. He did it so well I had to wonder if it was the same JKA that played Nnamdi. He is the comic relief of the movie and I looked forward to seeing more of him.

It goes without saying that Rose (Lilian Echelon) stood out as the centrepiece of this fine dining. Her character went from innocent to curious, scarred, and then strong. I will absolutely love to follow her trail in the industry as she climbs up to join other success stories like Jemima Osunde.

Generally, the cast sold it for me because they kept my eyes glued by how well they interpreted their roles. Even the boys – Rose’s brothers – played their roles right (I lie not, I’ve seen some annoying child actors in my time). The younger brother’s act seemed a bit forced, but the older one did a better job.

Eyesores in Black Rose

Initially, things were on a very high and impressive note but it took some dialogues to cause me to pause and question the writer’s motive.

The mother, played by profound actress, Ebele Okaro appeared toxic at some point. Rather than calmly caution her daughters on a couple of occasions, she seemed to be on the attacking end. Some would argue that it’s exactly how some parents are, but there should be a moral lesson in a story told and I wouldn’t say the characters learned anything. Unfirtuanegky, some mothers watching this movie would believe it’s right to slut-shame your daughter before her siblings.

Another issue was the end (no spoilers). The end got me dancing and giddy, but after the credit rolled by, I started justifying the end howbeit unrealistic it seemed. Still no spoilers, but how did ……. NO SPOILERS!

More on Black Rose

I was a bit shocked to have missed out on the release of this movie. Black Rose is a 2018 movie written by Beth Rogers and directed and produced by Okey Oku. So, if you’re like me wondering how you ever missed this movie, then read on to find out more reasons to pinch yourself awake.

Honestly, whoever wrote the synopsis on Netflix kept a lot back because the movie was anything but cliché. Netflix really downplayed the story and it could be on purpose to throw viewers off-balance.

Netflix: Struggling in poverty with her single mother and siblings, a principled young woman meets the man of her dreams but soon finds he’s keeping secrets.

We were never told that Jack wouldn’t climb the floating door with Rose after the Titanic ship sank, were we?

It’s quite understandable that the real gist would be held back and that’s why I will end this right here. There would be no more spoilers (that’s if I’ve given any away).

Waste no time, head over to Netflix now to watch Black Rose, and remember to drop your review here.

Meanwhile, here’s my actual review in four words.

It. Was. Mad. Oh!

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