By Tomilola Coco Adeyemo
I was at the premiere of Hell Or High Water two days ago, Sunday, 6th of June, 2016. Before the premiere, after I had been sent my Invitation, I researched everything I could about the film and the filmmaker and of course, the Actors involved in the project.
It is what I normally do; find out every single thing I can about a particular topic, subject, filmmaker or event before I get involved with it in any form.
However, I hadn’t searched for long when I realized Hell Or High Water was tackling a particular theme; Homosexuality in a country like Nigeria. A Country that has made its stance on Homosexuality known numerous times and by passing a law against Homosexuality that attracts a jail term if broken, a jail term of 14 years.
First thing that came to my mind? These people get mind o, eh! But after that, I thought, whoa, people have started tackling this issue openly, finally. Since Ishaya Bako’s Braids On A Bald Head (2010), I am not sure anyone else has had the balls to shoot anything on homosexuality in Nigeria/Nollywood.
You see, Hell Or High Water tells the story of a married Pastor, Gbolahan Jinadu, who spends a day with his ex male lover and unfortunately gets caught by the male lover’s ex wife. The male lover, played by AMVCA Winner Daniel K Daniel tries to plead with his ex wife but fails. The wife then goes ahead to release a sex tape between her ex and the Pastor.
The release of the sex tape of course becomes the beginning of a lot of issues for Gbolahan Jinadu.
Say what you may about this movie or why it got made in the first place, but this is an issue that will get more people talking about it as time goes by.
At the premiere, I heard five different Actors turned down the role of Gbolahan Jinadu, before Enyinna Nwigwe (Surulere, Couple Of Days) chose to play it.
And what does this tell us? It says, no matter what happens, no matter how much rules or laws are made against a valid topic in this country, there are some people who will be willing to lend their voices to the cause.
I am not here to preach or say that Homosexuality is good or not, I am here to say there are homosexuals in this country and, there are people willing to lend their voices through the arts to the minority.
And whether we like it or not, whether the government likes it or not, there are homosexuals, there are people who believe their voices should be heard and, there would be more films like Hell Of High Water.
Watch Trailer below