The Effect by Derick Lamnyam was screened last night at the Yarha 1st International Film Festival. Let’s take a look:
A lady and her two kids flee an armed conflict to the city where they struggle to navigate the rough terrain and travails in order to survive.
They soon realise life in the city is only different in that you die slowly. A plethora of negative stories from back home only makes their efforts to survive more painful and mentally challenging.
– Now, the movie is laced with intense sorrow. Ble Ble proportions of sorry. We see how Derick uses this sorrow as consequence of teenage pregnancy, food insecurity, hunger, death, deviant behaviour, all results of the Anglophone Crisis.
Also, the movie has subtitles in French, providing ease of reach to wider audiences.
The aspect of music and sound too came in handy, including the use of Jovi’s Don 4 Kwat.
General Toxic and X Virus also make appearances in the movie. It was when I tried rethinking their roles again that I realised they are probably the two most popular members of the cast despite the fact that they did not play lead roles.
Derick would definitely do better with a more experienced cast and a bigger budget.
It is a 67-minute tearjerker and call to action on the armed conflict. But like they say, even eye wey d cry, d see road.
So, what else did I see?
The Effect builds up so much emotion but doesn’t provide an outlet. Basically, it is void of any comic or joyful scenes to for once, relief the audience. So it is just emotions piling up until they basically are about to hoke you. When you expect to have a breath of fresh air it ends somewhat abruptly.
Understandably, it is a running story and the crisis is not over. But it is a movie and an instrument for societal change. I would have loved it if he imbibed in it, some form of solution or at least, a recourse to all the pains. At the end of the movie he promised us part II, so I pray to see that.
Again, another theme clearly visible throughout the movie, is God. The belief in God. The mother who took her two kids to the city, fleeing the war, prayed and cried to God all through. While it expresses the firm belief in a supernatural power for solution, I think it also demonstrates vividly the fact that ‘God alone’ as a concept is fast becoming sinking ground.
The character who portrayed the role believed in God alone but failed to take any other action. It is safe to say she cried like 2 liters of tears throughout the movie and yet, we never for once did see her lift a finger to work or find work.
Someone got the arrangement for them to leave the village. Someone else fed them. And when it was bleak, she cried to God while her kids were out getting corrupted.
We never for once saw her out there seeking work or using her hands to work. Relating it to the Anglophone crisis portrayed by the movie, it becomes very self-explanatory why a lot of aspects remain the way they are – inaction.
Like Derick said, many people are unaware of what is truly happening to victims of the armed conflict. It is a sad situation and I am pleased he is telling the story. Part II, he promised would be out before 2024.
Meanwhile, it is not too late to watch The Effect screened at Yarha. Today’s schedule: 4 p.m. at the Yaounde City Council.