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L.I.F.E. Warms Hearts and Opens Minds With its Thoughtful Portrayal of Contentment

In L.I.F.E., the grass isn’t always greener as fanciful dreams become sobering realities. Uyoyou Adia’s latest project explores the age-old “be careful what you wish for” fable with emotional authenticity.
February 22, 2024
2:08 pm

The story follows two women – Ema and Yinka – who have their deepest wishes unexpectedly granted with sobering consequences. Through their emotional journey, the film underscores how happiness rests not in material success, but in appreciating the present and the importance of loved ones.


We first meet Ema (Omowunmi Dada), an advertising creative director admired for her lucrative career. But behind closed doors, Ema feels detached from the dancing talents she abandoned long ago for corporate stability. Haunted by dreams of her dancing on the stage, she wonders whether a more meaningful life exists beyond boardrooms and closing deals. This inner turmoil contrasts with her outward projection of confidence at the office, where she manages anxious employees like her assistant-turned-friend KV.


Parallelly we encounter passionate dancer Yinka (Efe Irele), continually struggling through dancing and gigs to keep bankruptcy at bay. While pouring her spirit into every pirouette, she fantasizes endlessly about the wealth and renowned fame she should have achieved despite all her hard work.


At the fateful axis of their diverging fortunes, Ema and Yinka share a strange encounter with a seemingly mysterious old woman. What next? You have to see the movie to find out!



Dada’s performance as Ema is a tour de force, offering a nuanced exploration of a character navigating the resurgence of abandoned dreams. Irele’s depiction of Yinka, struggling with the turbulence of aspirations amidst adversity, stands out, overcoming the challenge of delivering lines in Yoruba with admirable skill.


The on-screen chemistry between Dada and Irele enriches the film’s exploration of friendship, resilience, and the relentless pursuit of happiness. The supporting cast, featuring talents such as Olarotimi Fakunle, Eso Dike, Mr. Macaroni, Tope Olowoniyan, Jay Paul, Kate Adepegba, Mena Sodje, and Fehintola Olalekan, contributes significantly to the film’s narrative depth.


“L.I.F.E.” unfolds with a captivating narrative, strategically setting the tone within the first 10 minutes, and capturing the audience’s attention. The film maintains a seamless execution, delivering a clear message without unnecessary detours. The adept use of visual language and an evocative soundtrack heightens emotional resonance, drawing viewers into a detailed exploration without unnecessary delays.


Breaking away from conventional storytelling, “L.I.F.E.” introduces a captivating choreographic element, elevating the film beyond the usual. This unique addition not only serves as a visual spectacle but also invites viewers to contemplate a foray into the dance world, adding layers of inspiration to the narrative.



Cleverly satirizing societal complexities, the film also integrates real-life trends, such as the menace of loan apps, into Yinka’s character arc. The thematic richness of “L.I.F.E.” imparts moral values, emphasizing the importance of friendship, love, and contentment.


Despite a minor undercurrent of predictability, the film skillfully sidesteps unnecessary subplots, maintaining a measured pace that enhances the gradual yet steady journey through character development.


Also, while avoiding showy excess in plot, camerawork, or editing, L.I.F.E. instead wins our investment through intimate performances and universality in its elegant message: happiness is an inside job. Despite trends toward predictability, graceful execution stays focused on awakening viewers to life’s meaning lying not in fame and fortune, but in how we connect to personal purpose and people who matter.



Release Date: February 15, 2024

Runtime: 1 hour, 47 minutes, and 53 seconds

Streaming Service: Amazon Prime Video

Director: Uyoyou Adia

Cast: Efe Irele, Debo Adebayo, Omowunmi Dada, Olarotimi Fakunle, Eso Dike, Tope Olowoniyan, Jay Paul, Kate Adepegba, Mena Sodje, and Fehintola Olalekan

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