Taxi Driver: Oko Ashewo is the story of a naive mechanic, Adigun, who moves to Lagos after he gets word that his father has passed away. In Lagos, Adigun meets Taiwo, a sly and cunning man who claims to have been his father’s friend. Taiwo gives Adigun his late father’s taxi and tries to help Adigun adjust to his new life as a taxi driver. Adigun quickly discovers that he has to cope with the many abnormal people he encounters in Lagos at night. Taxi Driver: Oko Ashewo is an exciting comedy thriller that exposes the strange and disturbing underbelly of Lagos life.
Odunlade Adekola and Femi Jacobs were the two main characters in this film. Odunlade plays the character of Taiwo, while Femi Jacobs is Adigun, the unfortunate taxi driver. Femi Jacobs is a Nigerian actor, speaker and singer. He came into prominence after he played the role of Makinde Esho in the film The Meeting, alongside Rita Dominic and Jide Kosoko. For his role in The Meeting, Femi received a nomination for Best Actor in a Leading Role at the 9th Africa Movie Academy Awards. Odunlade Adekola is arguably the most popular Yoruba comedian and actor in Nollywood. He has won several awards for his roles in indigenous films and is currently a nominee for Best Actor of the Year at the 2019 City People Awards. A few of the other actors in the film are Hafiz Oyetoro, Ijeoma Grace Agu and Kelechi Udegbe.
Taxi Driver: Oko Ashewo gives refreshing diversity to the usual Nollywood trend of glamour, power and wealth. Instead of affluence, we see the simple life and struggles of a taxi driver trying to survive in Lagos. The story is relevant and relatable. There are more and more people flocking to urban areas in search of greener grass, and we’ve all struggled in one way or another to adapt to Lagos life. On a deeper level, the film is about finding yourself, and the dangerous realities of trying to make a living in a fast-paced society. Commenting on the film, the director, Daniel Oriahi, stated:
“Taxi Driver: Oko Ashewo is a personal journal of my admiration for Lagos Island and its popular streets, from Igbosere road to Broad street, CMS, Obalende and vibrancy of its people. I relied on my own experiences as a foreigner to Lagos to influence my approach in telling this story of a man’s journey in search of purpose.”
Taxi Driver: Oko Ashewo grossed over ₦20 million at the cinemas, making it the third highest-grossing Nigerian film of 2015, behind Road to Yesterday and Fifty. It also made history as the highest-grossing film in its opening weekend at the time of its release. The dialogue of the film switches between Yoruba and pidgin English, but the lines are engaging and very well written. The plot is fast-paced and energetic, and the storyline is unique. Popular alternative singer Terry Apala and the award-winning rapper Falz co-created the soundtrack for Taxi Driver: Oko Ashewo. Terry Apala’s song Starring, in particular, received some praise.
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