Director : Kunle Afolayan
Producer(s): Kunle Afolayan
Starring : Ayo Ogunshina, Dayo Akinpelu, Simi Ogunleye, Femi Adebayo, Ayo Adesanya, Faithia Williams and Charles Okocha
Genre : Drama
Release Date : May 31, 2019 (Nigeria)
Awesome-O-Metre : 6.0/10
Revue of Mokalik
Mokalik (Mechanic) tells the story of Ponmile (Ayo Ogunshina) a 12-year-old boy from the middle-class suburbs whose father takes him to a mechanic workshop to serve as mechanic’s apprentice for a day to scare him straight.
If you have been (un)fortunate to spend some time at a mechanic garage, you will agree that it is one of the most humorous places to be because you will come across different characters with varying perspectives on different issues from social issues to politics and sports. Nigerian Mechanic workshops are to Nigerians what Barbershops are to the Americans—a watering hole of laughs and humor and it is these humorous standpoints that Molakik (a pun on the word Mechanic) explores from the point of view of a novice apprentice.
The charm of Mokalik rests on the shoulders of the cast who did a splendid job interpreting their roles. All types of characters that are usually in mechanic garages were represented in Mokalik- there were the troublesome ones, the diamond in the rough, the mentally unstable ones, the humorous ones, the crooked ones and of course an albino for the culture. All the characters are so genuine and authentic just like ordinary people going about their day to day lives. By the way, I have noticed that Kunle is always sneaking his kids into his films just like he did in Roti, and I think it’s so cool introducing his kids into his craft.
The technical dexterity that pervades Kunle Afolayan productions were very much in play in Mokalik. The cinematography in the film was very great with my favorite being a shot of the Ajentina, the chief mechanic sitting in the engine of a car working like a surgeon in the operating theatre. Also, that the film was entirely shot outdoors has its own challenges especially with light and sound but Kunle Afolayan did a great job managing the challenges that come with shooting predominantly with natural light and also managing ambient sounds.
Although the highlight of Mokalik is the cast, I was unconvinced with Ponle the novice apprentice and main character of the film whose acting is wooden and flat. He seemed uncomfortable with the role and almost like he didn’t want to be there. I think this is a problem with Nollywood that we aren’t grooming enough child actors to shoulder significant roles in films. I do hope we fix this soon. Another issue I had with Mokalik are the errors in the subtitles. Even though the mistakes weren’t so much but since the film was predominantly in Yoruba language and audiences who don’t understand the language rely heavily on the subtitles this reduced the enjoyment of the film. Please Nollywood need to double and triple check the subtitles of their films especially as some of these films may make it to international audiences.
Another let down of Mokalik is its plot because despite the great subplots, the main underlying plot was underwhelming and there were times in the film when I just wasn’t sure what the direction of the film was.
Anyways, Mokalik is a good film and shows why Kunle Afolayan is a master in his craft and I do recommend it for a good viewing experience. Let me know what you think about Mokalik or my review in the comment section below or on my Twitter and Facebook.
Have a great weekend!