In 22 minutes, Lola Okusami delivered a great short film that made me so angry I nearly cried. I loved every minute of it. Gone Nine Months chronicles the soon to be changed life of a Nigerian family riddled with various circumstances both good and bad. Okusami navigated this space through the on screen relationships between various members of the family, establishing a character profile from the get go.
Tunde Olajuwon played by Ola Ebua serves as the film’s main antagonist, a man set in his ways and made uncomfortable by his wife’s desire to do more with her life. He attempts to rule over his wife and family, portraying marriage as an unhappy chore (I don’t think I saw him smile once) and a one-sided effort. Agnes (Najite Dede) and her daughter, Isha Olajuwon (Zoe Favour) made the movie coupled with the actions of second child Oumou (Inimfon Iniama).
We’re moved by the infuriating and stifling interactions Agnes has with her husband, made better though by her relationship with her children. It screams of perceived typical marriages and the grooming of daughters for future roles. Agnes as wife and mother is seen keeping the house, despite being a university lecturer like her husband while her oldest daughter is raised to do the same.
Coupled with an early 90s backdrop on a university campus, Gone Nine Months encompasses events that make you ponder and reflect. It pushes you to review traditional roles in society, question what marriage is about, what family and individuality means, it makes you want to do and be more. In 22 minutes, Lola Okusami does a lot and I applaud her for this.