Producer: Mary Lazarus
Screenplay: Stanley Isokoh
Director: Paul Igwe
Cast: Mary Lazarus, Joseph Benjamin, Kehinde Bankole, Mary Remmy Njoku, Toyin Abraham, Uzor Osimkpa
Nollywood actress, Mary Lazarus makes her debut as a producer with “Dance to my Beat”. For her debut, she goes the cinema route, but with support from Rok studios; we also envisage an iRoko release in the months to come.
“Dance to my Beat” is a romantic comedy, a genre which has enjoyed tremendous success at the Nigerian box-office; It’s Her Day, The Wedding Party & Isoken are all beneficiaries of this “Rom-Com” trend. There’s also something to be said about the cast of this movie, Mary chooses an array of famous actors and together they create a movie that offers surface laughter and nothing extra.
Mary Lazarus’ character (Olamide) reminds us of that annoying friend in every clique, who’s deceitful, a showoff and extremely competitive. Olamide is that friend who is desperate to show off, loves shopping, spends recklessly, and worse still doesn’t have the means to back up her extravagant lifestyle. From the start, we know Olamide does not have as much as she spends. It raises questions of where her income is from. It’s definitely not from her fiancé, Raymond (Joseph Benjamin).
In Dance to my Beat, Olamide craves a high-profile society wedding. After all, they say a wedding is for the woman, so she decides that this will be the right time to extort her friends. Her fiance, Raymond hardly has an opinion on any of Olamide’s antics. In fact, she is in total control. She uses her wedding to fuel her account by selling her wedding Asoebi at exorbitant prices. Soon, the lies pile up and Olamide and Raymond can hardly meet up to the image they have promoted to their friends. But it doesn’t stop there, the expensive Aseobi circle continues because Olamide’s friends get married in quick succession, and they have no choice but, to purchase their friends wedding Aseobi as well. “Dance to my Beat” mocks the situation of Aseobi and wealth obsession but offers no solution.
The acting is well above average & Joseph Benjamin does quite a decent job here as Raymond, he even adopts an Ibo accent.
The constraint on budget does not give us a spectacular wedding scene despite the expectations we have for what should be a flamboyant wedding.
Continuity also falters here and visually, the shots do nothing memorable for us. The lack of character and set development is quite worrisome. We see a moderate earning civil servant in a mansion and that is before he falls in the loophole of pretence. Believability is not an option here thanks to the set, and the mistakes made by continuity. However, we do agree that characters like Olamide and her friends exist.
What we enjoy in “Dance to my Beat” is the laughter. It will make you laugh through every scene.
About the Author
Rejoice is a 22-year-old aspiring Filmmaker and a big dreamer. She’s also a ‘Theatre and film’ arts graduate from the University of Jos, Nigeria.