Aki & Pawpaw memes (taken out of their movies as pictures or videos) are pretty big on the internet right now because the world has finally realized the duo’s comedic genius. It’s great that Chinedu Ikedieze and Osita Iheme have become internet meme gods because it feeds into the “Naija to the world” thing we’ve got going on right now. But I’m here today to talk about another underrated classic Nollywood comedy that should get the same love.
Let’s get into it.
So the movie starts with Apollo (played by Kate Henshaw) and her friend on the way back from church on a Sunday. They see a group of people by the side of the road consoling a crying elderly woman. They go over to find out what’s up and find out that someone stole the woman’s bible. The first thing that comes to your mind after this revelation is:
In the middle of being consoled, the elderly woman lays a super heavy curse on whoever stole the bible.
This is when we find that Apollo was the one who stole the bible. We know this because the elderly woman’s curse hits her right there, in the form of terrible powerpoint CGI stars entering her eyes.
What follows this scene is (what should’ve been) a montage of Apollo going about town stealing everything she can lay her hands on. First, she goes to her friend’s room (while the friend is taking a shower) and steals money and underwear. Like, a ton of underwear. To sneak them out, she wears them all at once.
Next, Apollo goes to a boutique and attempts to shoplift a cheap bracelet by hiding it in her underwear. The feisty store attendant catches and embarrasses her outside the store, causing a mob to gather. A nice woman appears and tries to settle things quietly inside the store. The nice woman sticks her entire arm down Apollo’s underwear and finds the bracelet. The store attendant then runs outside to inform the waiting mob that Apollo did steal the bracelet. The mob proceeds to beat the shit out of Apollo. A nun shows up out of nowhere and tries to help Apollo but the mob just beats her up too.
It’s freaking hilarious.
The nun snitches on Apollo by reporting her to parents. And after they tell her how Apollo’s thieving habits have gotten worse over time, the nun reveals that she’s the mother superior of a convent and offers to take Apollo in as a sister.
I’m pretty sure that’s not how people become nuns but this is a Nollywood movie from the early 2000s so let’s cut them some slack.
Apollo spends three months in the convent and seems to have gotten over her klepto tendencies. That’s until her mother shows up to visit with provisions and THE STOLEN BIBLE from earlier in the movie. When Apollo sees the bible, this happens…
…causing her to immediately steal Mother Superior’s wallet.
With her kleptomania back with a vengeance, Apollo goes through the convent like a thieving tornado and gets caught when she steals a fellow sister’s expensive crucifix and loses it before she can return it. This means having to pay back the money for the cross (N10,000) in seven days.
Don’t worry, though. Apollo has a plan.
She takes some stolen food to visit three of her friends in town. The friends are suspicious of the food’s origin and accuse Apollo of stealing it but go ahead to eat it anyway because they’re poor and hungry. This is where it’s revealed that Apollo’s kleptomania (because of its spiritual origins) is contagious. After a few bites of the food, this happens to her friends:
And Apollo is like:
And they do.
They return a few hours later with a stolen briefcase they think is full of money but just contains a very surprised snake. In a move very reminiscent of Oceans 8, one of her friends comes up with the idea to steal the church’s offering box. They do, but take the prayer request box by mistake. Then there’s a hilarious dream sequence in which Apollo tries praying in front of Jesus and Mary’s statues but they both come to life and chase her away because she’s sinned so much.
The movie’s batshit crazy finale sees Apollo and her friends steal N50,000 from a powerful babalawo’s shrine. That leads to this happening:
The results of this are funny because of the body parts the money ends up touching. A hand:
A butt and a leg:
And then the movie ends with this:
A thing that bothers me about this movie is how it leaves many plot threads unattended to by the time it ends. The crucifix Apollo stole belonged to a fellow sister named Judith, who we later find out stole it from a Father Joseph (a character we never see). It’s heavily implied that an affair between Judith and Joseph is how Judith got her hands on the crucifix but we never get a resolution to that.
In a random scene in the middle of the movie, we find out that the friend Apollo stole underwear from earlier gets kicked out of her father’s house for telling him that he’s going to burn in hell for not being a good Christian. We never see or hear of her again after that.
Also, I genuinely started this movie thinking that Apollo’s parents named her after the Nigerian name for Conjunctivitis (Apollo) but we find out later that Apollo is short for Apollonia. To that I say LEE-MAO.
There is a sequel but I’ll cover that another day because local man is tired.