A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Nigerian drama is a modern retelling and exploration of the prodigal son story and lesson.
Positive Role Models
Sam is a musician who is a womanizer and hedonist. He has rejected his church family and background due to his father's physical abuse as he was growing up; he later uses religion as a way to get rich. A girlfriend ends up making money smuggling drugs and human organs on the black market.
Movie is a production from the Nigerian film industry, or "Nollywood." Nigerian culture and music is on display, as is pervasive impact spirituality and evangelical Christianity has on the country.
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Violence & Scariness
Sam is beaten in the back with a rod by his strict Christian minister father. Sam is accused by a church member of "sexual misdemeanor with young female members."
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Talk of sex. Implied sex between Sam and his girlfriends and wife. A younger woman accuses Sam of getting her pregnant, sends him pictures of her ultrasound.
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"F--k" often used. Also "bulls--t," "s--t," "bitch," "ass."
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Cigarette smoking. Cigar smoking. Wine drinking.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that The Man of God is a 2022 Nigerian drama in which a musician finds success as a minister but struggles with temptation and his abusive past. While the movie is in some respects a modern faith-based retelling of the prodigal son story from the Bible, there are adult themes and situations throughout. "F--k" is often used, and there's cigarette and cigar smoking. The lead character, Samuel, is a womanizer who, in addition to being involved with the three most important women over the course of his life, is implied to be having affairs with other women on the side, including an incident resulting in a pregnancy that he denies causing. One character makes money on the black market through drug dealing and human organ trafficking. The movie shows a lot about Nigerian culture and music, as well as the spiritual, social, and financial prominence religion holds in that country. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
This is a "Nollywood" take on the prodigal son story. The Man of God is the somewhat unwieldy story of Samuel, a man who escapes his family and his father's abuse in order to pursue being a musician in the mold of his hero, Fela Kuti. While he attends church, he's also a womanizer who breaks hearts and also gets his own heart broken. It can be quite melodramatic at times, and there's a rawness to this unorthodox faith-based story that's likely to be a bit much for faith-based viewers who are accustomed to a much more sanitized reality conveyed in their entertainment.
In the middle of all of this are some wonderful musical sequences, live Afrobeat-style performances that are entertaining in and of themselves. The story itself isn't a love triangle so much as it is a love octagon among Samuel, three women, and at least four of the seven deadly sins. Some of the transitions in time are not the smoothest, and the ending comes across as more than a little forced to fit the overall theme. And yet, the acting is solid across the board, the story mostly holds together, and it's a fascinating glimpse into the social and political power that religion wields in this country's culture.
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