City to City

The Wedding Party

Kemi Adetiba

A lavish wedding escalates into pure Lagosian chaos, in this wild romcom produced by media mogul Mo Abudu.

Love, laughs, family, intrigue, and a big old wedding. Romantic comedies offer particular pleasures, and no one does them like Nollywood: brighter, more colourful and often more outrageous than its Hollywood counterpart, the Nigerian romcom is something to behold. So here comes The Wedding Party.

Art gallery owner Dunni (Adesua Etomi) is the cherished daughter of Bamidele Coker (Atunyota Akpobome, popularly known as Ali Baba) and his wife, Tunuade (Sola Sobowale). When Dunni and her fiancé Dozie (Banky Wellington) elect to marry, the Cokers decide to throw the wedding of the century. Success in Nigeria's oil industry has given them new wealth, so why not splash out for their only daughter? Besides, their reputation is at stake. While Dozie's parents, Felix (Richard Mofe-Damijo) and Obianuju Onwuka (Ireti Doyle), believe their son is marrying beneath him, for the sake of tradition they're willing to leave the big day to the bride's parents. Barely.

The Wedding Party is the latest from producer Mo Abudu, who has established her own film and TV empire in Lagos: she's been compared to Oprah Winfrey and is the mind behind the box-office hit Fifty and the drama series Desperate Housewives Africa. Abudu sought out acclaimed music-video director Kemi Adetiba to give the comedy the sizzle it demanded.

As in Hollywood romcoms, this film is a feast for the eyes: lavish sets, gorgeous costumes, and a high-gloss polish befit the fantasy of the perfect wedding day. But as the groom faces the return of an ex-girlfriend, the bride confronts wild embarrassments, and village guests turn up to topple the parents' carefully laid plans, this wedding party escalates into pure Lagosian chaos.

CAMERON BAILEY

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