Trini people ain’t easy – they ain’t easy at all. Films starring cutesy puppets are typically light-hearted, good-natured family themed entertainment. Leave it to Trini puppets to bring nuttin’ but bacchanal to the big screen. Lust, infidelity, and murder-for-hire are just a few of the many vices that peppered the plot of Lexo TV’s first full-length feature I Am Santana – The Movie. Despite some very noticeable production shortfalls, the mix-up-and-blend-up drama driven plot made the brilliantly scripted I Am Santana – The Movie one hell of a hilarious film!
I Am Santana – The Movie is about the epic love story of Janice and Santana…and their nosey neighbor Narine, his abusive wife Patsy, the lecherous Pastor Stewart, man-tiefin’ Kizzy, Sookdeo the ‘bad Indian,’ prickly old Miss Millie, a surprise marriage proposal, a cutlass attack, a shooting, a kidnapping, a faked death, and an unexpected pregnancy…in a nutshell. Oh yes, and Miss Millie’s “Jones and Wuk Up” contest, can’t omit that one. Puppet masters Roger Alexis – also the film’s director and the creator of the Santana puppet series – Gyasi Gonzales, Karrysa Babwah, Kevin Matturine, Avis Holder, and Arlene Williams did a fantastic job bringing these distinctly Trinidadian characters and uproarious story to life.
Where I Am Santana – The Movie clearly won in content, it lost in production. One of the films’ production handicaps, which in this case added significantly to the humor, was the ridiculously cheesy special effects. Since the puppets didn’t have legs, they sloppily (and most hilariously) morphed puppet heads on human bodies for running, dancing, and action scenes. Other production issues were that the sound wasn’t always level, and there were segments, especially in the beginning of the film, in need of color correction and sharpening to eliminate blurriness.
Overall, I Am Santana – The Movie was a riot! Lexo TV did a fantastic job with the characters and a most hysterical script. Despite the production flaws, I give this four out of five stars, and encourage anyone who wants to see an excellent Caribbean comedy to see this film.