Coming From Insanity (DVD) Review

March 18, 2024

In 1995, Kossi was a 12-year-old kid who had been trafficked to Lagos and sold into domestic slavery—a common fate for thousands of children who end up serving in family households whose treatment ranges from disinterestedly kind to emotionally brutal. He would live there for fifteen years until he was finally ejected from his ‘owners’, who gave him severance and a ticket back to Togo.

But Kossi was a smart dude and he knew that his only way out of his situation was to start making money. So he did something that only someone with a ton of bravado and a pinch of luck could pull off: he started printing counterfeit dollars.

Director Akinyemi Sebastian Akinropo’s feature debut is based on the awe-inspiring true story of Kossi “The Bear,” a notorious currency counterfeiter with genius-level intelligence. Gabriel Afolayan is a revelation as Kossi, whose focus and brilliance contrast with immaturity and an almost painful innocence.

Adeolu Ayorinde shines as the wise house boy who tries to help Kossi; Bolanle Ninalowo lends depth to his bouncer-turned-bodyguard Rocky; Sharon Ooja brings an irrepressible charm to Sonia, the object of Kossi’s affection; and Odunlade Akola delivers a memorable scene as a loquaciously aggressive cab driver. But despite its gripping plot and cast, Coming from Insanity is still an uneven film. Several characters are presented as one-dimensional sketches, and the plot leans too heavily on broad strokes.


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