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Movie Review: The Royal Hibiscus Hotel

Don’t get confused that we are reviewing “The Royal Hibiscus Hotel”, yes it is not the season of love but considering the fact that  this Nollywood Romantic Comedy Cinema movie “The Royal Hibiscus Hotel” genre is not what we are used to in the Nigerian movie industry, hence the need to review the movie. So here we go!

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The movie; “The Royal Hibiscus Hotel,” a star-studded romantic comedy that tells a love story is from the stables of EbonyLife Films. The executive director of the production company, Mo Abudu delved into something new different from the norm.

The movie was written and directed by Ishaya Bako, whose movies include “Road to Yesterday” and “Braids on a Bald Head”.

The Royal Hibiscus Hotel features Zainab Balogun, Rachel Oniga, Jide Kosoko, Deyemi Okanlawon, Kemi Lala Akindoju, Ini Dima Okojie, Joke Silva, Olu Jacobs, Akah Nnani and Charles Inojie.

The storyline: The movie follows the life of Opeoluwa (Zainab Balogun), an international chef and daughter of the owners of the badly-run Royal Hibiscus Hotel, Chief Segun, and Rose Adeniyi.

After failing in London to create an Afro-fusion restaurant of African cuisines, which has always been her dream, Opeoluwa leaves London for Lagos, Nigeria, much to her parents delight, to resume as the head chef in their family hotel and see how this reflects on her dream board.

Opeoluwa’s Mom wants her to get married while her Dad needs her signature to sell the hotel for a  incredible price. Martin, the buyer, invites his friend and investor, Deji, from London to lodge in the hotel for a week, giving Mr. Adeniyi the chance to get all the signatures he needs to finalise the sale of the hotel.

Opeoluwa falls for Deji, a dashing young businessman with a secret that could kill their young relationship. In the middle of the chaos of sabotages and tension, true identities are revealed, true intentions are doubted, and the beautiful budding love story falls apart. But in the end,the Ope-Deji love defies the obstacles.

The characters: The lead characters, Deji (Kenneth Okolie) and Opeoluwa (Zainab Balogun) were adorable to watch. Their on-screen chemistry is one to root for. The type of on-screen love that gives you butterflies and make you want to feel love, the Cinderella kind of love. Unlike Deardre and Nonso in “Wedding Party 2”.

The supporting characters are given too little to work with.  Jide Kosoko and Rachael Oniga play the Adeniyis, Ope’s exuberant love-struck parents and they killed the roles though.

Real-life couple Olu Jacobs and Joke Silva also pulled a wonderful acting, although they make cameos as couple and friends to the Adeniyis. Deyemi Okanlawon plays the bad boy yet again, and it is phenomenal. Kemi Lala plays Chika, the receptionist who would rather chew gum, file her nails and drool over good-looking guests, than do the job she is paid for. Toni Tones plays Esther, Ope’s childhood friend and confidant. Ini Dinma Okojie plays hotel guest and music star. Charles Inojie and Akah Nnani play cooks which they played perfectly well applying humor.

Although the movie has a good storyline but it is not that spectacular as it is a simple one with a twist ending. The plot is as simple as a normal nollywood movie, a man meets a woman, they encounter obstacles along the way but in the end, love conquers.

However, the simplicity of the plot conveyed with great humor may be its strong point.

The plot can be said to be pleasing. Aside comedy, The Royal Hibiscus Hotel has a lot going. It has good music and terrific acting with wonderful casts.

The Soundtrack by Cobhams is superb and tracks from Nonso Amadi, Simi and Johnny Drille helped to keep the romance alive. The movie is a standard nollywood film that should be seen by movie lovers.

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Updated: July 26, 2018 — 3:05 am

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