‘Sylvia’, starring Attoh and Balogun, explores mental health struggle in relationships
Almost a week before its official release in Nigeria, Sylvia has created a heightened sense of expectation among die-hard fans of Nollywood.
‘When we are asleep in this world, we are asleep in another’, written in typewriter font on the movie’s poster, suggests that Sylvia explores an individual’s complication of two worlds: real and surreal.
Paying attention to the presence of mental health challenges in relationships, Sylvia also makes a statement in exploring the themes of love, lust, obsession and the struggle between the real and surreal.
Sylvia’s trailer leaves us with cherry at the top of a cocktail with its highlights following the two main characters, Sylvia and Richard.
Richard Okezie, played by super talented actor, Chris Attoh, has bonded from his childhood with an imaginary friend. He has formed a certain type of rapport with his friend Sylvia, played by Zainab Balogun.
Time goes on and the two friends graduate their friendship into a deeper love requiring commitment from both parties.
As life will happen to him eventually, Richard moves on from his fantasy affair to commit to a real-life love, Gbemi played by Ini Dima Okojie.
Of course for Richard, his decision to transcend the surreal world lands him in trouble with his surreal lover, as the movie takes a shocking and disastrous turn. Richard is caught up in a dilemma between the happiness of real life and the monstrosity of the surreal.
Directed by Daniel Oriahi, written by Vanessa Kanu, with executive producers Babatunwa Aderinokun and Uche Okocha and distributed by AMVCA award recipient TRINO Motion Pictures, Sylvia promises to keep us on the edge of our seats and set our minds racing.
Sylvia debuted at the Nollywood Week Paris and was entered for the competition to win the ‘Prix du Public’ (Audience Awards) based on the filmmaker whose film scores the highest among the audience.
It is indeed refreshing to know that Nollywood movie makers are interested in real-life issues like mental health.
The presence of mental challenges has long been underplayed and seeing Sylvia explore such sensitive theme is a welcome idea.
We wonder from the official trailer, Richard’s fate and how the protagonist’s conflict becomes resolved as the movie climaxes.