Acrimony: A pity party I refused to turn up for

Tyler Perry was high on something hotter than the sun to be able to pull off such nerve racking movie.

All of them had genius buried in the DNA of the movies.

Tyler knew exactly what he did in that movie. From the narration by Taraji who played Melinda— a narration that was steeped in brokenness, helplessness and most importantly an unconscious appeal to the sympathy of the target audience.  You cannot help seeing the movie and story from her standpoint.  You may try to maintain a straight line of thinking while watching but I bet you won't know when you stagger off the line and plunge into a mucky water of her story.

Before you notice what had happened to you, you must have turned into a model of pity.

Tyler Perry and his crew studied the human emotions thoroughly not because they had an exam to pass but because you cannot manipulate what you don't understand.  They had to understand the ‘why’s’, the ‘WTF's’, the ‘Awwwwws’, the ‘YES!’ the ‘this is cute’ and every other thing in relation to the anatomy of the human emotion.

The movie had everybody thinking about what they will do in that case, it had some people interpret their relationship with that script; it had some other people on the sidelines of love say "You see why love is Bullshit?  You see why I am incapable of love?  Acrimony is why"

Lol

Bitterness, Hatred, Animosity, Enmity.

Acrimony is such a nice word that it barely even fits its description compared with the words above and other cruel sounding ones.

The reason the movie is raising eye brows is simply because Tyler tweaked the ending and instead of the conventional love story “Awwwwwns”,  he said "let's give them some WTF moments". And Boom!

He did it and a conversation ensued: who is wrong and who is right?

It became an irritating exercise of side taking and a festival of generalizations. It became a reminder to women that men were scum.  The movie made them forget that the art of "scumry" is like breathing.  Everybody owns a scum side that always shows or rarely shows.

Melinda.  A young pretty girl mistakenly runs into a young man Robert on a rainy school day and her books scatter across the wet floor like bottle covers in a pub. Her first reaction is what ruined her—anger.  Not normal anger—an abnormal violent anger that encouraged her to hit a sturdy black man who she didn't know anything about.  She threw logic to the wind and managed to land few punches on him.

Robert picks up the papers and tracks her down with the INTENT of apologizing. He went to her room to apologize and just like many "one night stands" that ended in marriage; he fell in love with her.  The way he looked at her changed. He saw a glow that was never there when she hit him. She saw a walking and talking sexiness stand before her door armed with a chocolate skin and a broad smile.

I wouldn't say who fell before whom. I want to believe they fell together. Like an on-your-marks kind of falling.

Now, on their first date, he didn't hesitate just like everyone else with a big dream to tell her his lofty dreams.  I am sure that at the time Mark Zuckerberg was building facebook, the conversations he had on date nights must have had boring tales of how was going to bring the whole world together with a single application.

Robert was that and more.

He shared HIS dreams probably expecting reciprocation but it never came.  She didn't have something she was chasing, like a dream job or something.  She had interest in just graduating from school.

They were direct opposites.

Now, men or women who are given to inventions and great ideas stay either SINGLE or they are married to SOMEONE (Male or female) who completes them. Someone who they can run to and ask "hey, I'm trying to fix X but Y is popping up.  What should I do? Should a make an x out of the y? "

Someone who supports the dream with something more tangible than money!

Moreover, take this to the bank: Money didn't do half of the things sharing of ideas and criticisms of ideas did when facebook was a baby idea. I say this with a wonderful amount of conviction because money doesn’t birth ideas.

I honestly think people didn't watch this movie with an understanding of how society works.

She gave him an idea of a better name to call his battery.  It was a naming ceremony that involved lovers, like lord Lugard and his wife who after sex named the largest country in Africa Nigeria

Good.  Great!

But it wasn't the name that made it buyable or appealing. The name didn’t save that idea for the entire 18 years that it suffered rejection and neglect.

Let's digress a bit to the incident that marred the relationship at first.

Robert being a prostitute decided not to nurture his common sense by at least being faithful to a girl that just got you a car.  Now, I’m not even saying that you can cheat if you are not given a car.  I am saying that it takes a higher level of disregard to cheat on someone you love who sacrificed thousands of dollars to get you a car.

Robert was a fool by letting the thought of cheating linger in his mind.

We humans have two sides: physical and emotional sides. Melinda’s emotional side was damaged already. Yet, Melinda wasn't reasonable enough to guard her physical side which was at least healthier than her emotional side.

She decided to be impaired emotionally and physically by deciding to run into his caravan attempting to kill him.

I won't defend her actions with "oh, she's got anger issues that she couldn't manage." I'm not doing that!  If not, it'll be cool to say "Oh, ISIS terrorists have a terrible anger problem.  If only they can be treated they'll stop bombing.” You see how stupid it sounds?

Now, small praise for Robert:

It is bad to hurt someone you love or better still someone who loves you.  On the other hand, it is also bad to attempt to kill someone you love because he cheated.

Like, Robert would have lost his life midway into orgasm.  She saw them having sex and then she decided to screw them too by attempting to kill them—a threesome gone wrong.

Robert and Diana ran out unscathed and she was already bleeding from her nose.

Scratch that.

Robert didn't even think of how he almost got killed when he was begging her for forgiveness. He didn't bother thinking of how she would have moved on to another guy had he died.  He just wanted one thing: A second chance to prove he could be faithful.

Had Tyler Perry turned the table of that scene where she hit his caravan house and let's say he gets injured and finally becomes a cripple, you'll be shocked at how the tone of the arguments will change.  We'll hear sermons of how karma is a wonderful soldier that defends the defenseless.  We'll have women trying to be employees of karma by attempting murder tomorrow.  And you'll be shocked at the percentage of people who wouldn't give a single damn about the dead fella.

When she was running into that caravan with her car, she didn't mean to hurt herself.  She wanted him DEAD. She was pulling the bow so hard she didn't know the arrow was aimed at her forehead.

She wanted him back.  She would have averted further misery by letting him go but she didn't.  She wanted to love him with his brokenness and his obvious imperfections.

Anger, third party and assumptions are the tripod on which their wrecked marriage stood on.

I've discussed anger lengthily. Let's talk about third party and the role it played in Melinda's misery.

Melinda's sisters NEVER liked Robert. I remember her telling her sisters that they must like him.  Of course they tried but it wasn't cake walk.

When a third party is involved in a relationship, they are mostly foolish. The eldest sister of Melinda ticks all the boxes of foolishness.  She was selfish.  She just wanted to be able to say "Yo, I told you years ago to live his battery-inventing-broke-ass alone but you was in love.  Now see what has happened?”  This was her aim all through the movie.  To prove to her baby sister that she made a wrong choice.  Such undiluted bitterness deep seated in her heart.

She saw a purse that belonged to the girl that cost her sister her womb and all a grown woman thought about was running to her sister whose marriage has been standing on one leg because Robert didn't want any job.  He wanted his battery to replace the sun.  She ran to her sister with fulfillment in her eyes. Her dream had come true.

Robert DIDN'T cheat. They had just coffee and discussed his battery— a productive discussion that changed the cause of his life forever.

Melinda, a wreck rushes to the house to complete the beating she started years ago in school.  They created a scene.  He was already on his way going for the presentation of what will be the genesis of her dreams of luxury.  She almost stopped him but he staggered into that company and had a deal of 800 thousand dollars turned down.

People argued on twitter that he was selfish by not taking that 800k. I didn't blame them for being so sincere with their Myopia. I blame social media that has replaced looking at the "big picture" with scampering for dope pictures that’ll illicit likes.

Robert invested 18 years of his life in this project.  No family.  Not one member of his family to tell him that all was going to be well. He was ALONE with his confusions and frustrations. You may say "He had a wife" and I'll tell you that you are estranged to reality.  As a man or woman in love,  no matter how you try to spin it, there are certain frustrations you go through that your spouse will know about but only your family will understand you a hundred percent. No disrespect to the marriage institution but it is what it is.

Robert didn't have anyone to run to—Just his wife who he wouldn't blame for giving up on him before he struck gold.

He was not going to take that meager amount all because of a house.  He will be doing himself a great disservice by doing that. There is a stubbornness that accompanies greatness and focus—a reckless disregard for desperation no matter how bad you want it. Robert had that stubborn trait which made him slam the door against 800k dollars. This was someone who didn't have 50 dollars on him at the time.

To some, that was stupidity. To few people who can relate to such stubbornness, cheers.

Getting home and announcing to his raging partner that he turned down such deal came off as insensitive to me. I think that there were other things to say apart from that. I mean, in a house that was choking with confusion and impending depression, you waltz in telling them that you turned down 800k that could easily barter their confusions.

Make no mistake; "Roberts" of this life do not think the way others do. He might have turned down that deal because of its pointlessness.  800k wasn't going to fulfill his promises to his wife. It wasn't going to get the diamond ring or the boat or even one engine of a private jet.  It doesn't even come close to what he had gone through for 18 years.

It is easy to label him "selfish" because of democracy of words but I feel that selfish is rather a harsh word. I feel focusing on the big picture was used interchangeably with selfishness a lot in the conversations I've seen on twitter.

Melinda defiantly puffing smoke to his face and wishing she could squeeze the life out of his neck.  She walked him out of the house that she sacrificed for his project.  He begged but he knew the woman he got married to. She even bragged about her madness once or twice in the movie.  She even said “You know me. I can be the devil

Robert left and wandered into homelessness.  No job.  No wife. No family.  No love.

Melinda stayed. At least she had family—her sisters and their husbands who played roles in their divorce. Talking about the divorce; Robert walked into that room crestfallen, he was forced out of his will to sign those papers.  He resisted by begging her before the lawyers and her family but Melinda was hell bent on that. The divorce meant a lot to her eldest sister whose dream finally came true.

He left the room he had walked into as a married man divorced.

Melinda got busy that night under the sheets moaning with eyes closed trying to see heaven. She went down with another man hours after divorcing.

Now, girls support this with an argument that it was her way of moving on from Robert.  I honestly do not understand how people maltreat their brains by saying things like this.   Sleeping with hundred men with the sole aim of moving on from one man is never logical and rather looks like choking the universe with all the promiscuity that being in a relationship didn't afford you.

Diana replaced the woman who had made sure that Robert was frustrated resigned from Prescott and that felt like God working according to Robert.  After she had met with Robert seconds after leaving her car, she got to the office and asked her secretary to get her all the files that had Robert Gayle on it.

She spent her time going through the videos from the first one he sent to the last one. She sat there watching the man she once had inside her frolic with his lover amidst hugs and mushiness.

People argued that she wanted Robert for herself and that was why she helped in the first place. I didn’t see an ulterior motive in her actions and inactions. When she helped him get an appointment with Mr Prescott, he was still married. As a matter of fact, he had rubbed it in; “Diana, I am married. I don’t cheat on MY wife”. Of everything he had wanted to do at the time, cheating wasn’t on the list because of the turn he life had taken.

Robert according to the judge was way too kind out of his own free will. He came to Melinda’s office with a bouquet of rose flowers just to tell her “Our battery hit”. He didn’t have to after all, I mean; she had forced him through a divorce and had thrown him out of their house. Yet, Robert deemed it necessary to come give her the news without contempt.

It was then that she knew that she had messed up. I can boldly argue that she left him because the battery dream seemed dead and she didn’t want to “Waste” more years with a loser. Now, let’s get something straight; I’m all for equality of the both sexes and I find this statement cringe worthy; “After wasting my time with you all these years…” You can hardly see a man that uses that statement.

It always comes from the females. When they say that, you can see the regret in their voice, you can see the unconscious plea for a refund of all those years as though the relationship didn’t involve two people. Melinda wanted a refund of all the money she had spent on Robert. Robert gave her a ten million dollar cheque with the keys to her mother’s house. The generosity level he showed was stratospheric even the judge said he hadn’t seen such in his court.

Honestly, I think demanding for all the money you spent on your lover after the love goes sour is as stupid as any other person asking for a refund of all the laughter’s, blushes, cuddles, butterflies and even orgasms.

Melinda realized she was a loser already and went ballistic. She created a pseudo account and stalked Diana as though Diana had her placenta. She threatened, she cussed, she promised to be a thorn in the flesh of Diana. Let us not forget how she believed that coming to Roberts house with lingerie will bring them back together after she had promised him at her office; “We are not getting back together Robert”.

Now, it is her that desires the comeback but sadly, he had moved on.  Make no mistake; she still loved him and he still loved her. I mean; who gives his enemy a 10 million dollar check? But, just as we have seen countless times— we almost never get to marry our one true love. We know them, they know us but there is something somewhere that makes it completely impossible to happen.

Melinda blamed her sisters, she said that they got into her head and messed up their relationship. She wanted to seduce him with her strapped lingerie and Diana walked into them and kept her calm until Robert did an introduction that ran Melinda out of the house.

The reason I refused to turn up for the pity party Melinda threw with her narration was simple; she was playing the victim. The narration was her point of view. Had Robert handled that narration, we would have seen and understood the anatomy of pain, rejection and frustrations. He would have taken the viewers down the dusty road of neglect and disregard.

If Melinda claims that Robert wasted her time and destroyed her life, Robert can claim that she was a bad omen in his life because it was after the divorce from her that his dream came true. Post relationship claims are full of crazy sentiments and well tailored blackmail. I stay out of conversations that see to a verbal brawl of people who once loved themselves.

Everything Melinda lost in Acrimony was her fault. Everything!

She lost her womb because of her anger. There was no point in trying to bring down that caravan house. She lost her marriage because a grown woman like her let her disgruntled sisters to advice her to leave her husband while they lived with theirs.  Losing her own life was her fault too. She didn’t pay heed to the judge’s instruction.

She found her way into the boat she claimed was hers. In fact, Melinda was a mad woman. She was an insane woman! I won’t exhaust the little sympathy I have left on Melinda. She doesn’t deserve the effort of pity. I will not feel sorry for her because of her anger issue. It was her duty to fix her life and not my duty to share pity when things go south as a result of her not seeking help.

Melinda ruins a boat cruise with her bitterness. Shoots at Robert and axes his leg. She dies and he dies. At least she had succeeded in killing him after trying years ago.  This was her only success in the movie—killing and Robert and ruining his new found love with her new found insanity.

Finally, I feel a certain level of gratification knowing that I have penned down half the way I feel about Acrimony and most importantly throw my weight behind the conversation. You may want to see my submission as insensitive or wicked but I promise not to budge because you won’t understand how I dislike being generous with sympathy. I use it sparingly like a foolish man uses wisdom.

Written by Mark Anthony Osuchukwu.

Mark Anthony Osuchukwu is a writer, social commentator and critic. He is on instagram as onye_mark. He can be reached via obumnemeosuchukwu@gmail.com

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