Lionheart and the other Nigerian Movies on Netflix
While Genevieve Nnaji’s love letter to Enugu, Lionheart, is the first Netflix Nigerian original; it is not the first Nollywood movie to appear on the streaming platform. There have been several Nigerian movies on Netflix long before the Lionheart deal.
Netflix is an option for Nollywood filmmakers to make more profit off their art.
It is also home for movies rejected by the Nigerian cinemas as in the case of Abba Makama’s Green White Green. Making it one of the best platforms for fans at home and in the diaspora to enjoy Nigerian movies.
So, if you are looking to Netflix and chill, below is a list of all the Nigerian movies on Netflix.
NB: Click on the title to go to the movie’s page on Netflix.
The 20 Nigerian Movies on Netflix
Lionheart is Genevieve’s directorial debut. The movies generated international buzz for being the first Nigerian movie acquired by Netflix for global distribution.
It is a feel-good movie that has been welcomed by the Nigerian audience. It received mostly positive reviews from critics, especially for Yinka Edward’s brilliant cinematography.
“When her father falls ill, Adaeze steps up to run the family business – alongside her uncle – and prove herself in a male-dominated world.”
Cast: Genevieve Nnaji, Nkem Owoh, Pete Edochie, Onyeke Onwenu, Kanayo O. Kanayo, Kalu Ikeagwu, Jemima Osunde, Phyno, and Peter “P-square” Okoye.
Director: Genevieve Nnaji
Abba Makama’s critically acclaimed directorial debut, Green White Green, was rejected by Nigerian cinemas because they thought it was not fit for the Nigerian audience.
Makama, who claims not to be hard done by the decision, said he “made a film that is accessible to anyone in the world.” Irrespective of their nationality.
“Green White Green is a tale about the shenanigans of three teenagers, from the three major Nigerian tribes, during their interminably long wait for admission to the university.”
Cast: Ifeanyi Dike, Jammal Ibrahim, and Samuel Robinson.
Director: Abba Makama
Road to Yesterday is a romantic drama that marked the return to acting by star actress Genevieve Nnaji. The movie also marks Ms. Nnaji transition to film production.
“Road to Yesterday follows the story of an estranged couple, Izu and Victoria, trying to fix their marriage while en route a relative’s funeral.”
Cast: Genevieve Nnaji, Oris Erhuero, Majid Michael, Chioma Omeruah, and Ebele Okaro-Onyiuke.
Director: Ishaya Bello
The Visit is a unique 4-cast movie which was praised for its excellent screenplay – credited to the brilliant Biodun Stephen – and strong performances.
All four actors were outstanding in their roles.
“The film focuses on the life of two couples with different lifestyles – the uptight, conservative Chidi and Eugenia and the loudmouthed, hard-partying Lanre and Ajiri – living in the same apartment block and how they handle conflict when their lifestyles collide.”
Cast: Blossom Chukwuejekwu, Nse Ikpe-Etim, Femi Jacobs, and Bayray McNwizu.
Director: Olufunke Fayoyin
The Wedding Party is one of the few Nigerian movies to have both commercial successes – it sits second on the list of highest grossing Nigerian movies – and critical acclaim.
It is also one of the two Nigerian movies on Netflix among the top ten highest grossing Nollywood movies.
The film, which premiered at the prestigious Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), was mostly loved by critics.
Writing for Pulse Nigeria, Chidumga Izuzu called it a “comedy movie that sets out to entertain.”
“As their big day arrives, a couple’s lavish wedding plans turn into a nightmare of exes, fighting parents, and uninvited guests.”
Cast: Adesua Etomi, Banky Wellington, Ireti Doyle, Ali Baba, Richard Mofe-Damijo, Sola SObowale, Zainab Balogun, Enyinna Nwigwe, Beverly Naya, and Daniella Down.
Director: Kemi Adetiba
6. Fifty (2015)
Fifty is the first movie from Mo Abudu’s EbonyLife Films. The movie focuses on the lives of four women – Tola, Kate, Elizabeth, and Maria – approaching fifty and with unique problems.
“Tola is a popular reality TV star with a complicated marriage; Maria has a secret affair with a married man; Elizabeth, a successful obstetrician with a taste for men half her age, has a disastrous relationship with her daughter; Kate’s battles with a life-threatening ailment has turned her to a devout Christian. “
Cast: Ireti Doyle, Omoni Oboli, Dakore Akande, Wale Ojo, and Nse Ikpe-Etim.
Director: Biyi Bandele.
What will you do if your husband is comatose for months? Move on? Stick with him with the hopes that he will come back to you?
What if a dashing, caring young man walks into your life during this period, will you be able to resist?
“Muna’s love for her husband, Imoh, is put to the test when an accident lands him in a deep coma and a new man walks into her life.”
Cast: Adesua Etomi, Kunle Remi, Blossom Chukwujekwu, Desmond Elliot, and Tamara Eteimo.
Director: Niyi Akinmolayan
Out of Luck is another terrific movie that did not get much love from the Nigerian cinemas.
It was written by prolific screenwriter and Nollywood executive, Chinaza Onuzo. The movie explores the lottery culture in Nigeria; the slums of Lagos to be specific.
“A lottery operator tries to pay off a local gangster by taking him on a thrill ride from the slums of Lagos Island to the mansions of Ikoyi and back.”
Cast: Tope Tedela, Femi Branch, Jide Kosoko, Adesua Etomi, Sambasa Nzeribe, and Linda Ejiofor.
Director: Niyi Akinmolayan.
Want a piece of action, crime, and romance in one movie? Then Netflix and chill with The Department. The movie is one of several collaborations between screenplay writers Chinaza Onuzo and Uduak Isong.
“The film tells a story of a secret department in a business conglomerate, as its gang members blackmail top executives into selling their companies to the leader of the conglomerate. The department wants one of their former members for a job but she is now married. Her husband disapproves but she accepts anyway. Now, he must sabotage the department to save his marriage.”
Cast: Majid Michael, Osas Ighodaro, Desmond Elliot, Oc Ukeje, and Jide Kosoko.
Director: Remi Vaughan-Richards.
Long before they collaborated on big-budget, box office record-breaking comedies, Niyi Akinmolayan, and Inkblot Production released some interesting movies.
The Arbitration is one of them. The film explores sexual harassment in workplaces.
It is a nod to the #MeToo movement and while it fell short in execution, it was praised for its effort in pushing a different kinda story to our screens.
“The arbitration panel is formed after a company CEO in Nigeria is sued for wrongful dismissal and rape by an employee with whom he had an affair.”
Cast: O. C. Ukeje, Adesua Etomi, Ireti Doyle, and Somkele Iyamah-Idhalama.
Director: Niyi Akinmolayan.
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11. The Duplex (2015)
The Duplex is a supernatural thriller produced by Emma Isikaku.
“A cash-strapped man and his pregnant wife got a good deal on a new home only to learn they are not the only living in the house.”
Cast: Mike Ezuronye, Omoni Oboli, and Anthony Monjaro.
Director: Ikechukwu Onyeka.
A Soldier Story drew out an award-winning performance from Daniel K. Daniel, who played Bossman, a savage war criminal who has a special love and smell for rats (snitch).
Nollywood is not a conducive environment for war dramas and of all the Nigerian movies on Netflix A Soldier Story is the only one that explores the genre. The story packs a lot of promise but falls short in execution. However, it is still an enjoyable ride.
“After a battle between peacekeepers and rebels, one injured soldier is found comatose but alive by a scavenger who slowly nurses him back to health.”
Cast: Linda Ejiofor, Tope Tedela, Daniel K. Daniel, and Adesua Etomi.
Director: Frankie Ogar.
Gbomo Gbomo Express is a gritty crime drama by Walter “Waltbanger” Taylaur.
The movie is a spin-off of EbonyLife’s TV series Married to the Games, also written and directed by Waltbanger. Gbomo Gbomo Express centers on kidnapping which is a common Nigerian trade.
“The night spins sinisterly out of control when incompetent kidnappers hold a club-hopping record executive and a socialite for ransom in this dark comedy.”
Cast: Ramsey Nouah, Osas Ighodaro, Gideon Okeke, Blossom Chukwujekwu, Kiki Omeli, Gbenro Ajibade, Alex Ekubo, and Ikechukwu Onunaku.
Director: Walter Taylaur.
Couples of Days is a cute romantic comedy with a storyline resembling Tyler Perry’s Why Did I Get Married.
The movie was not received well in the critics’ circle and but you know a rom-com is always enjoyable with bae.
“Three couples, each in different phases of romance, head to Ibadan for a fun and frisky holiday. But secrets soon spill, causing trouble in paradise.”
Cast: Ademola Adedoyin, Lilian Esoro, Enyinna Nwigwe, Kiki Omeili, Okey Uzoeshi, and Juliana Olayode.
Director: Lord Tanner.
15. Head Gone (2014)
EbonyLife Films’ Chief Daddy featured all of Nollywood, Head Gone featured everyone in the Nigerian entertainment industry; from a-list comedians to star musicians.
The movie is a goofy comedy which is “mildly funny” according to film critic Wilfred Okichie.
“While being transferred to a new hospital, several psychiatric patients escape their guards and become entangled in a series of comic misadventures.”
Cast: Zack Orji, Basorge Tariah, Akpororo, 2Face, Ali Baba, Basketmouth, Eniola Badmus, Sound Sultan, Wale Ojo, Hafeez Ayetoro, and IK Osakioduwa.
Director: Dare Fasisi (Baba Dee).
Invasion 1897 is an ambitious, historical drama by Lancelot Oduwa Imasuen. The film tells the story of the events that led to the forcing out of the powerful Oba Ovonramwen of the old Benin Kingdom by the British colonial forces.
“Aiming to seize control of coveted rubber trees, British colonial forces move into West Africa’s Benin Empire to depose its powerful ruler.”
Cast: Mike Omoregbee, Paul Obazele, Rudolph Walker, Annika Alofti, Charles Venn, and Segun Arinze.
Director: Lancelot Oduwa Imasuen.
Taxi Driver is a comedy thriller directed by Daniel Oriahi (Sylvia) and produced by Ayobami Macauly.
The film explores working at night in Lagos as a taxi driver; it introduces you to the hustle and grinds nature of Nigeria’s busiest city – Eko.
“After his father dies, a young mechanic moves to the city to drive the old man’s taxi, and encounters assassins and a motley crew of urban weirdos.”
Cast: Femi Jacobs, Odunlade Adekola, Richard Akinladen, Ijeoma Grace Agu, Oyetoro “Saka” Hafeez, and Kelechi Udegbe.
Director: Daniel Oriahi.
Mothers have a strong bond with their sons; that bond is even stronger when it is the only son and this can make some mothers intrusive. Mummy Dearest explores such relationship and how it disrupts the son’s life.
“When a colleague’s mother dies, a man who has been avoiding his own intrusive mother travels home for a visit that changes their relationship forever.”
Cast: Daniel K. Daniel, Liz Benson, and Wendy Elenwo.
Director: Willis Ikedum.
Everyone with an early heartbreak understands how much it can affect relationship life going forward.
When Love Come Around follows the story of Love, a girl who had an early heartbreak and closed her heart towards true love because of it.
“Much to her distress, Love (played by Zynell Lydia Zuh), has long put her guard up by dating only wealthy men for their money suddenly finds herself falling in love for real.”
Cast: Zynell Lydia Zuh, Jim Iyke, Eku Edewor, Edward Kufour, and Mikki Osei Berko.
Director: Afe Olomuwe.
When Love Happens is one of the many romantic Nigerian movies on Netflix. It is produced by Kene Mparu and Moses Babatope.
The story is centered around a Mo Bankole-Smith, an event planner with difficulties in getting into a relationship. She plans weddings for others but has no luck in getting one for herself.
“Fed up with coordinating weddings for everyone else, unlucky-in-love event planner Mo turns to the internet to see if she can find her own Mr. Right.”
Cast: Weruche Opia, Gideon Okeke, Oreka Godis, Beverly Naya, OC Ukeje, Wale Ojo, and Bassey Ekpeyong.
Director: Seyi Babatope.