18 December 2019
Four reasons to watch Joba, Biodun Stephen’s film of faith
Biodun Stephen’s genius is her ability to tell complex stories in a simple, relatable manner. She did it in Ovy’s Voice, a heartbreaking tale about a mute makeup artist that explored the distressing effect of rape. In her movies Tough Love and Tiwa’s Baggage, the lasting effects of pain are examined.
In Joba, her most technical film yet, Biodun continues her simple approach to tackling intricate subjects. The central issues here are barrenness and faith. The film follows a young Christian couple, Lamide and Oreofe, who, after years of marriage, still haven’t been blessed with a child. While struggling with their childlessness, they are attacked by armed robbers, who assault Oreofe.
Worse, Oreofe becomes pregnant after the ordeal. Her plight puts a strain on their marriage and tests their faith in God. However, there is a light at the end of the tunnel.
Although Joba is a heartbreaking story, it would be more of a pity to miss out on watching this excellent film. Here are four reasons to add Joba to your watchlist:
1. Storytelling at its best
Biodun Stephen is a master storyteller. Her simple stories evoke tears, shock and laughter. She immerses you in the lives of this couple who love each other but have to deal with many forces that seem determined to pull them apart.
2. It examines faith
Biodun has never shied away from her beliefs. On social media, she often talks about how God influences her writing and how she wants the viewer to receive a message from her film. In Joba, she focuses on the need to have faith.
3. It tackles everyday issues
From Ovy’s Voice to Looking for Baami, Biodun has always preferred relatable stories of ordinary people. Joba is no different. She dives into the subject of infertility delicately, addressing the pressures a woman faces when she struggles to conceive.
4. Enado Odigie and Blossom Chukwujekwu’s performances
The legendary director of The Godfather, Francis Ford Coppola, said, “Good acting and writing are the oxygen and hydrogen of cinema. If you have both of them, then other weaknesses, such as production design, can be compensated for.”
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Joba, like many Nollywood films, suffers from budget constraints. But the strong performance Blossom Chuwkujekwu and Enado Odigie bring to their layered characters more than makes up for it. Odigie, especially, is unbelievably excellent in a role that requires her to dig deep into her emotions. Her performance is devastatingly heartbreaking in sad scenes and charming in lively scenes.