A brilliant and emotional story written by Ifeoma Nkiruka Chukwuogo, "Bariga Sugar" is one that seizes your attention from its beginning, and doesn't relinquish until the credits roll.
Set in the mid-90s, the short film tells the story of an 8-year-old Ese, who lives in Bariga Sugar, a ghetto brothel owned by Madam Sugar in Lagos.
One day, 10-year-old Jamil and his mother Hanatu move into the brothel. Often neglected, lonely and socially awkward, Ese and Jamil begin an unlikely friendship.
"Bariga Sugar" is a masterpiece of a short film with no obnoxious scenes or cringe worthy scenes.
The film focuses on friendship and love. The relationship between Hanatu and Tina illustrates the ability of humans to show love amid hatred and pain.
The stigma that comes with being the child of a female escort is also explored.
The cast of the movie make their performances emotional. Halimat Olarewaju is stunning as Ese. Tunde Azeez as Jamil is impressive and they are both easy to watch.
Ese and Jamil share some funny moments, but, they offer more poignant moments with their friendship and conversations. They build their bond and make it believable with every heartwarming scene they share.
Despite some of its hilarious moments, "Sugar Bariga" is tear-jerking. It's heartbreaking at the end of the day, but it is the first realistic Nollywood production you will see this year.
Simply put, "Bariga's Sugar" conveys a deep sense of humanity. Its beauty is not in its 'high quality' production, but in its original story and setting, brought to life by the director, Nkiruka Chukwuogo.
"Bariga Sugar" is a short film worth your time and data.