I doubt if English can give vivid interpretation of the Yoruba production of Femi Adebayo’s King of Thieves, “Ageshinkọ́lé”.
This film should not only be subtitled in English, it should be translated to reach wider audience and promote the culture of the Yorubas as it depicts the current political situation of this country.
Every scene of this Adebayo’s epic movie opens the tap of my aqueous humour and rolls down tears from my eyes uncontrollably.
It speaks about deceit, lies, vengeance and justice in an ancient town ruled by corrupt people.
Adebayo himself is the hero of this movie but there are other legends; Odunlade Adekola, Ibrahim Chatta, Dele Odule, Ibrahim Yekini also known as Ìtèlé, Lateef Adedimeji, Toyin Abraham, Adebayo Salami popularly known as Oga Bello.
Each of these legends represents one spiritual group or the other that must endorse the enthronement of a king. These groups include the witches and the wizards; the Sango and the Ogun; the Egungun and the Hunters and the Ogboni fraternity.
Apart from the king who is a deity in his own class, there are other forces plus the traditional chiefs who make laws not actually to grow the society but to satisfy their personal lives.
They perverse justice, they deceive citizens and climb the ladder of corruption to the top where they can perpetrate greater evil.
In the King of Thieves, Adebayo alongside Itele expose these atrocities in their transmigration, telling how their forefathers deceived them to commit crime and later betrayed them. They were buried alive. They reincarnated and became bandits that tormented the town for years.
All military and spiritual efforts to stop banditry prove abortive until the dead reveal themselves and announce the new rules to the kingdom to follow.
Today’s Nigerian bandits were once deceived by the political class. Many of them had been killed but their offsprings are around who are daily tormenting us.
Nigerian government cannot kill all the bandits. These are zombies. Men who only exist but their spirits are long gone. Fighting them is like fighting a dead man. They are dead and no one can kill them again unless a new leadership will come that can form a better structure and follow the path of justice.
I recommend “Ageshinkole” for you. It summarises my essay.