For starters, making a movie about Nigerians running internet scams doesn’t sit well with me because even though the country isn’t on the top 20 list of countries with the highest rate of internet fraud, the stereotype by Hollywood and the American media practically labels us as number 1 (even though the USA is number one on the list).
And when making a story like this, it should at least have been done right.
Nigerian Prince was a very confusing movie for me and the 5 reasons listed below explains why.
1. A professor living like a poor woman
I don’t get how a law professor in Lagos, lives like someone who can’t afford 3 square meals. She has no internet connection (on both her phone & general life), no generator, no car, uses kerosene lantern, etc. That doesn’t make sense.
2. A law professor openly talks about her son running scams
The professor’s son, Pious, is the scammer in the movie and when asked what her son does for a living, she actually opens her mouth to say “He does internet scams”. She even goes as far as talking about it openly in cyber cafes and cracking a joke about her son not liking cybercafe computers cos they’re slow.
3. “Eze goes to school”
Eze was ‘scammed’ by his mum who told him he was coming to Naija to learn about his heritage when instead she wanted him to spend a year in a Nigerian school… because he got into a fight in his American school. He wasn’t suspended nor expelled, she just wanted him to school in Nigeria? 🤔
4. Secret Service/EFCC Scene:
The EFCC and the United States secret service caught Pious, the scammer, in the act of scamming a US operative. There was video evidence of the scam and a ton of witnesses. But all that didn’t matter because a policeman bribed an EFCC official out of his own pocket to secure Pious’ release. No lawyer involved, just pure bribery? Again, there was video evidence.
5. Using someone else’s passport to travel out:
At the end of the movie, Pious wants to run away and uses Eze’s passport to book a flight ticket. Now, here’s the real issue; Eze’s passport photograph was still on the passport. Fine, Pious bribed the ticketer to give him an airline ticket, but what was the plan to pass through US immigration?
The name and picture on the passport clearly belonged to someone else. An American citizen for that matter whose name would no doubt be in the country’s database.
Overall, Nigerian Prince was confusing for me and then I felt the storyline was fundamentally flawed. We’ve seen Hollywood movies and shows like Black-ish make fun of the “Nigerian Prince” online scamming thing… And with a movie of that title, it was the perfect chance to turn that story on its head and show how officials are working to curtail scams and make the American media bite their tongues in silence, not give them even more ammunition to use against Nigeria.
Ah well, at least the movie gave us some good memes.