Moses Inwang is one Nollywood director famed for mind-teasing dramas with the films Stalker (2016), Alter Ego (2017) and Crazy People (2018) to his credit. His latest movie “Bad Comments” tows the same line, but it is also a message to trolls on the damning consequences their actions could have.
In the lead role is the man who some fans refer to as ‘Nollywood bad boy,’ Jim Iyke. Iyke, who is also the producer of the film, stars as Frank Orji a Nollywood actor with a successful acting career that has also earned him a variety of brand endorsement deals.
Orji is single and suave. He is also a considerate employer. His good nature caused him to give his pilot the day off while he decided to board a commercial flight from Abuja to Lagos on what became an ill-fated day. While waiting at the VIP lounge at the airport, Orji has an unfortunate altercation that ended up on the social pages of a notorious troll called “Truth Hurts.” Sadly, Truth Hurts is a sensationalist and does not tell the complete story. Consequently, Orji is embroiled in a PR nightmare. At first, he is depressed and disorientated until he meets other celebrities who went on a downward spiral and he realised that that could become his fate too. It was a wake-up call to Orji that he must clear his name.
“Bad Comments” makes for a good case study for PR students even though Orji’s personal assistant Hilda (Osas Ighodaro) doubles as his publicist, and the PR team whom Orji referred to as working to resolve the issue, never feature in the film. Instead, Hilda hires a bodyguard and hacker, Roma (Ben Lugo Touitou), as she tries to do damage control.
The story also explores familiar themes like love and betrayal. When Orji is at his lowest ebb, his friends and those close to him distance themselves from him except Sharon. In what could have ended as a crime of passion, Orji finds love with a teacher Tasha, whom he had mistaken for a troll. However, it is surprising how welcoming Tasha (Sharon Ooja) was to Orji. On their first meeting, the schoolteacher does not mention the accusations against Orji and rather presumes that he is doing some research for an upcoming role. That would be unlikely except she is not social media.
The film begins with Orji singling out his detractors and in the end, he tells them to use their knowledge and skill for good. In the concluding scenes of the movie, Ighodaro’s performance intensifies as Hilda becomes frenzied. For a moment, it seemed like one was watching her in a stage performance. It was captivating and the kind of performance one would like to see more of from the actress.
“Bad Comments” is not one of Inwang’s best, but the storytelling progresses meaningfully and it climaxes to a satisfactory end with an unexpected revelation.
“Bad Comments” is showing in cinemas.