Published on: January 23, 2023

Shanty Town, the latest Netflix original series, explores the gritty and violent world of sex workers, gang leaders, and corrupt politicians in Lagos, Nigeria. The six-part series is the first original Netflix project of 2023 and has high expectations placed on it. The production focuses on a common theme of a powerful politician being the mastermind behind illegal activities in the slums, specifically the drug and prostitution rings in the shanty towns. However, the use of suspense and mystery is overused and the plot is somewhat difficult to follow.

The audience is constantly left guessing who the real villain is and what their ultimate goal is, which can be both intriguing and frustrating at the same time. The acting performances in the series are also mixed, with some delivering outstanding performances, while others fall short. Chidi Mokeme, who plays the role of a corrupt police officer, stands out as a standout performer. He brings a sense of complexity to his character and manages to convey the internal struggle of a man who is torn between his duty to uphold the law and his desire for power and wealth. On the other hand, Ini Edo's acting seems forced, and her portrayal of a sex worker does not feel authentic.

RMD's portrayal of a drug lord is not convincing, as he seems too polished and refined for the role, and Nse's perfect English does not fit with the environment. Peter Okoye's acting debut is not a strong performance, but as a debut, it is not bad either. One of the main criticisms of the series is the fast resolution of conflict, which feels rushed and does not do justice to the build-up. This is a common issue in Nollywood movies and series, where there is a long build-up to a conflict, but the resolution is rushed and unsatisfying. This can be frustrating for viewers as it insults their intelligence. Shanty Town does a decent job of not rushing the resolution, but most of the resolution is talked through, which can be a bit tedious. The audience is left with a lot of unanswered questions, and the ending feels somewhat unsatisfying.

Overall, while the production is decent, there is a lot of room for improvement in terms of plot, acting, and resolution of conflict. The use of suspense and mystery should be more balanced with a clear and concise plot. The acting performances should be more natural and not forced, and the resolution of conflict should be more satisfying and not rushed. The series should also be more explanatory, providing more background information and context on the characters and the setting. With these improvements, Shanty Town could be a truly gripping and engaging series that would leave a lasting impression on viewers. The show displays the depth and complexity of the criminal underworld and the lives of the people who inhabit it, but it could benefit from a more cohesive and well-structured narrative.

Producer: Taiwo Adebayo, Judith Audu, Ini Edo, Uche Jombo, Charles Okonkwo, Chichi Nworah

Director: Dimeji Ajibola

Actors: Richard Mofe-Damijo, Sola Sobowale, Nse Ikpe-Etim, Nancy Isime, Lilian Afegbai, Toyin Abraham, Ini Edo, Ali Nuhu, Chidi Mokeme, Peter Okoye, Zubby Michael, Shaffy Bello, Uche Jombo, Regina Daniels, Mercy Eke

Country: Nigeria

Runtime: 50 minutes per episode

Genre: Crime Thriller

PG Rating: 18

Written by: Amarachi Ndukwe

Aggregate Rating:  


Amarachi Ndukwe wrote: If the movie didn't feel rushed, it would have had a higher rating. We expect better from Nollywood.

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