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5 Films To Watch In April 2021

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April 2021 slate is highlighted by splashy of new releases; this month’s lineup is most exciting for the attention it calls to (a very small) handful of essential new and new-ish independent films that slipped under the radar and never received the attention they deserved.

As expected, this month would bring in several new films across all genres, and we can’t wait.

Below are five movies that you shouldn’t miss this month:

‘Concrete Cowboy’ April 2nd (Netflix)

Concrete Cowboy is an uplifting story that focuses on a little known corner American culture – urban African-American horseriding, specifically in Philadelphia. The film is based on the novel Ghetto Cowboy by Greg Neri, which is a fictionalized tale of the city’s Fletcher Street Urban Riding Club.

The film follows a young teen from Detroit named Cole (Stranger Things star Caleb McLaughlin) who is sent off to live with his estranged father, Harp (Idris Elba). It’s here that he learns about the local cowboys and they provide a safe haven from the poverty and violence that plague the area.

‘Thunder Force’ April 9th (Netflix)

In a world terrorized by supervillains, one woman has developed the process to give superpowers to regular people. But when scientist Emily Stanton (Octavia Spencer) accidentally imbues her estranged best-friend Lydia (Melissa McCarthy) with incredible abilities, the two women must become the first superhero team. Now, it is up to the newly founded Thunder Force to battle the super-powered Miscreants and save Chicago from the clutches of The King (Bobby Cannavale).

Filmmaker Ben Falcone has been working with Melissa McCarthy for years, directing her in films like Tammy, The Boss, Life of the Party, and Superintelligence, and Thunder Force looks to be another successful team up for the pair. While playing on superhero tropes and ideas, it also hopes to reimagine what superheroes can look and be like.

‘Tom Clancy’s Without Remorse’ April 30th (Amazon Prime Video)

Tom Clancy’s 1993 novel Without Remorse served as the thrilling introduction to John Clark, one of the most prominent characters in the author’s popular Jack Ryan franchise. The film adaptation will star Michael B. Jordan as Clark, with Italian filmmaker Stefano Sollima (Sicario: Day of the Soldado) directing.

The film follows Clark, a US Navy SEAL, as he seeks to avenge his murdered wife. He uncovers an international conspiracy along the way, and joins forces with fellow SEAL Karen Greer (Jodie Turner-Smith) and shadowy CIA officer Robert Ritter (Jamie Bell).

‘Mortal Kombat’ April 16th (Theaters and HBO Max)

Mortal Kombat has remained one of the most popular and successful fighting game franchises thanks to its unique roster of fighters and forever controversial depictions of absurdly graphic violence. The series has gone from arcades to the latest generation gaming consoles, so it’s no wonder that film adaptations were attempted back during the franchises’ peak. However, following the failure of Mortal Kombat: Annihilation, further movie plans were put on hold until now, over two decades later.

This new reboot is produced by James Wan and directed by Simon McQuoid, and it’s looking to breathe new life into the martial arts genre by leaning hard into the series’ more fantastical elements and of course, putting the games’ famous Fatalities on the big screen in all their gory glory. The story follows a washed-up MMA fighter named Cole Young (Lewis Tan) seeking out the world’s greatest fighters to defend the realm and his own family.

‘Stowaway’ April 22nd (Netflix)

Musician and filmmaker Joe Penna caught attention at the 2018 Cannes Film Festival with his directorial debut Arctic, a survival drama starring Mads Mikkelsen. His latest film, Stowaway, looks to maintain his sense of edge-of-your-seat thrills while moving into the realm of science fiction.

The film follows the crew of a spaceship headed to Mars, who discover an accidental stowaway (Shamier Anderson) shortly after takeoff. Too far from Earth to turn back and with resources quickly dwindling, the ship’s medical researcher (Anna Kendrick) emerges as the only dissenting voice against the group consensus that has already decided in favor of a grim outcome. The film also stars Toni Collette as the ship’s commander and Daniel Dae Kim as the ship’s biologist.

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Rachel Bakam: 5 Things You Didn’t Know About The Late Actress

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Rachel Bakam: 5 Things You Didn't Know About The Late Actress

Yesterday (Tuesday, April 13, 2021) was a sad day in Nigeria’s filmmaking industry, as actress Rachel Bakam passed away.

The film star died at the age of 39 after battling with anaemia.

While the film industry is still mourning the actress’s demise, Newsrand presents below five things its readers should know about her:

She grew up in Kaduna

Bakam was born and raised in Kaduna State where she had her primary, secondary, and tertiary education. She studied English and Theatre Arts at Ahmadu Bello University and Digital Filmmaking at New York Film Academy.

She was a brilliant student

Bakam was the best graduating female student and best graduating student of the Faculty of Arts in Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria. During her secondary school days at Kaduna Capital School, she was President of the Literary and Debating Club and also the Head Girl.

She once worked as a salesgirl

Her father died when she was 12 years old. At the age of 16, she started working, first as a salesgirl in a supermarket, later in a recording studio.

Bakam fought against human trafficking

Bakam was an anti-human trafficking ambassador. She joined the non-government organizations ― Devatop Centre for Africa Development ― in campaigning against sex trafficking and other forms of modern slavery in Nigeria.
After the Southern Kaduna crisis, where many people were killed, Rachel Bakam and John Fashanu joined Big Church Foundation to support the victims with relief materials.

Aside from being an actress, she was a media personality

She hosted ‘Trends & Rachel’ ― a popular television show that airs on some Nigerian television stations. She also produced and presented her show, Rachel the PIPER, and its Hausa version ‘RACHEL MAI KAKAAKI’ ― an entertaining, yet highly humanitarian television programme.

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How I Ended Up Marrying 4 Wives -Jide Kosoko

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How I Ended Up Marrying 4 Wives -Jide Kosoko

Nollywood veteran actor, Jide Kosoko has revealed how he ended up marrying four wives, saying it was never what he envisaged.

Speaking with Vanguard, Kosoko explained that though he’s a product of a polygamous marriage, being a polygamist was what his parents kicked against.

According to him, he married a second wife due to his craving for being married to someone who’s also an actor.

“I never envisaged being a polygamist though I am a product of one. My parents didn’t support it either. My first wife was a businesswoman. I craved for somebody who was in the same field as me,” he said.

Continuing, he added that he lost both women in an interval of 11 months.

“In those days, the best advice you can get is from your better half and that was how the second woman came to be. Along the line, I lost the two to childbirths within 11 months interval. I had seven children at that time, so I didn’t plan to remarry or to have more children again.

“But after much persuasion from my doctor and relatives, I decided to have a woman with the agreement of not having more children but a complete African woman will not agree to that. One thing led to the other and I got two women again. So being a polygamist is not intentional but God’s design which I do not have a right over,” he was further quoted as saying.

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Why I Refused To Do My Wedding In Lagos -Harrysong

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Why I Refused To Do My Wedding In Lagos -Harrysong

Alterplate record label founder, Harrysong has revealed that he deliberately snubbed Lagos for his wedding to avoid too much media frenzy.

Speaking with Punch barely a week after his wedding ceremony which held in Warri, a city in Delta, the music star explained that marriage is something personal to him, and he wanted it private.

“Being married is good. I feel complete. Now, I have a companion. I have someone that sincerely has my back and I am building my life with.  A lot of people were hoping or thinking that I would have a big Lagos wedding but I did not want too much media frenzy around us. Marriage is something very personal and serious to me, so I wanted it to be as private as possible. If I wanted to do a society wedding for status sakes, it would have held in Lagos and it would have been a funfair. But I chose to go to my home town in Warri to do it right and well.

“I don’t want to talk about my marriage too much because people become inquisitive and I don’t want to put our homes in the public sphere. That brings problems. I love to keep my home private. Once you bring your marriage on social media, it could breed unexpected things,” he was quoted as saying.

Harrysong, however, advised eligible bachelors to stay off social media in their search of a life partner.

“My first advice to any eligible bachelor is― get off social media when you want to be serious in the search for a life partner. Social media has destroyed homes and made it seem like there are no good people except homosexuals, homewreckers or people with questionable characters. Just be real and true with yourself, there are good men and women; not everyone is bad. Social media has cast a lot of people in a bad light,” the new groom added.

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