Reviewed By Ajibare Abioye
It’s not every time I get to capture a gospel movie in one word, but “30 Pieces” for me is simply BEAUTIFUL. Everything about it – the story, acting, cinematography, music, resolution and editing – is just beautiful. These are the moments I as a reviewer live for – a synthesis of the art, the eternal and the critique of filmmaking. Right from the first second, I felt I was about to watch something special. And I believe this can be the narrative for all gospel films, because I know it is the Lord’s Spirit that gives inspiration; it’s neither by our power, nor by our might.
Another word that may be used to describe “30 Pieces” is EXEMPLARY. Firstly, it’s a case study on the art of Opening Scenes – how to make them catchy. I almost shed a tear after seeing it because it was so well-executed. Also, it’s a sample of intelligent and purposeful sound design. Furthermore, there’s an element of filmmaking used in this movie that I consider genius – the art of misdirection. It was successfully applied on multiple occasions, and I think it’s a vital lesson to screenwriters (and editors) that films are made for audiences: The screenwriter should be in control of what the audience sees per time, so, we have to choose correctly. Screenwriting requires quite a lot of meticulous story crafting, which was given here, asides the DPO’s seeming ignorance of the first raid on Alade’s lair. These and many more enhance not only the watching experience, but the way in which the messages hit the heart.
One of the trivia stated about “30 Pieces” is that it’s the first Mount Zion motion picture that centres on the Nigerian Police Force, and it’s a welcome entry which shows us that even in that profession, a true believer would find expression of a divine sense of purpose, as portrayed wonderfully by Damilola Mike-Bamiloye’s Officer Emma. He ministers to his ‘next-door neighbours’ which gives an eternal edge to his job. Obi Pius Chioma’s Officer Collins is a worthy antihero and it’s rather sad to see what the devil does to his family; of course, he and his wife are culpable for aligning their choices with their enemy’s wishes.
Emma is not portrayed as a perfect man, as we see when he doesn’t obey the Holy Spirit’s voice. And he suffers for it for a while, before the seed of selflessness he has planted in the lives of others begins to speak for him. This showed me more vividly that the instructions God gives us are for our own good; they’re to keep us from danger, to teach and guide us in the best pathway for our lives. Standing on the side of righteousness in the midst of corrupt colleagues came with rewards for Emma, which makes us see that as long as we’re walking in God’s purpose for our lives, He’ll cause all things to work together for our good (Romans 8:28).
Since the release of “Abejoye Season 6”, there has been the novel insertion of logos in the end credits. These acknowledge the ministry, the production outfit and the music studios, which I believe, is a good move. At that point, I said to myself: this is what gospel movies should be – a production filled with moments that bless your spirit, touch your heart, and make you feel – cry or smile. “30 Pieces” is filled with many instances as these.
In conclusion, “30 Pieces” is worth every single minute of its runtime and is a rewarding viewing experience.
The link to the movie is https://youtu.be/JEXm0YN70MQ
30 Pieces (March 19, 2023)
Mount Zion Film Productions
Damilola Mike-Bamiloye as Officer Emma
Obi Pius Chioma as Officer Collins
MoromOluwatiketike Abolaji as Sharon
Omolara Ayoola as Meg
Jide Ogunmilade as DPO
John Oguntuase as Officer Babatope
Adeola Jerry-Oluwagbemi as Officer Nwabueze
Joseph Opadele as Alade
Samuel Obikoya as Tega
Damilola Mike-Bamiloye and John Oguntuase
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