When discussing “Emotional Crack” we talked a lot about Camilla’s death and the way in which it seems to serve as some form of a warning against participating homosexual relations. We talked about how these Nollywood films employ these drastic endings to emphasize the immorality of these actions, and that in most Nollywood films the “evil” rarely go unpunished.
I think it’s really interesting to look at “Emotional Crack” and “The Master” from a comparative standpoint on this matter. The fact that Dennis is arrested in the end of the movie is in accordance with the theory that the corrupt are eventually punished in the Nollywood films. One would be unable to argue that “The Master” comes to an end without some form of a moral being projected. I think the degree, however, to which Dennis’ crime of corruption and 419ing is miniscule in relation to Camilla’s punishment – her death.
I wonder if Dennis’ arrest in “The Master” is viewed as necessary as Camilla’s death was in “Emotional Crack.” I found it fascinating that, though Dennis is arrested, he is given a chance at the end of the film to justify himself and his actions. Dennis is allowed to make the point that those who fall victim to 419’s are only those who’s greed consumes them, and in a way they deserve it. This speech allows the viewer to remain sympathetic with Dennis, in light of his crimes. Camilla, contrarily, is in no way justified and is, instead, vilified by the end of the movie. As one may pity Dennis at the time of his arrest, the audience lacks sympathy for Camilla by the time of her death.
I am curious as to why Dennis’ boss was never brought to justice for his acts of fraud. I understand the concept that his extreme wealth gives him a degree of invincibility, but if this movie was truly a commentary on how wrong it is to 419 others than I feel that he would have been punished too.
Is it fair to assume that homosexuality is viewed as much more severe moral crime than fraud and embezzlement in Nigerian society? Perhaps that is too broad of a generalization to make off of two movies? It just amazes me the humorous and almost light-hearted way that these 419ers were portrayed in “The Master.” I feel that the movie almost advertised the lifestyle more than the film condemned it.