Gut-Churning Nigerian Horror Will Make You Question Meeting Your In-Laws


  • Aniunoh and Franklin shine as Nikiya and Luc, delivering exceptional chemistry in moments of love and terror.
  • Ogunlade’s chilling score enhances the genre-bending atmosphere, keeping the tension high throughout.
  • The explosive finale unveils shocking family secrets, challenging the audience’s patience for the reveal.

You never really know someone until you meet their family. It is a crucial step towards building a lifelong, forged bond before entering into matrimony. But what happens when the in-laws-to-be hold a nightmarish secret? Director Daniel Emeke Oriahi tackles the consequences of meeting a family-to-be in his Nigerian horror film, The Weekend. With a team of creative writers including Egbemawei Dimiyei Sammy, Vanessa Kanu, and Freddie O. Anyaegbunam Jr., Oriahi’s feature comes with genre bending and overwhelming suspense capable of entertaining and shocking its viewers.

The story follows Nikiya (Uzoamaka Aniunoh) and Luc (Bucci Franklin), recently engaged and happy. Nikiya is desperate for a family after her mother’s death left her orphaned at a young age. She turns to her fiancé’s family and finds their engagement to be the perfect opportunity to connect. Unfortunately, Luc is estranged from his family, though they mostly keep in contact by phone. His reluctance towards seeing them is built on a family grudge he can’t seem to release. Nikiya is convincing, however, and he finally agrees to take her to his parents’ house for their anniversary.

The Weekend’s Tactful Storytelling Is What We’ve Been Missing In The Horror Genre

The Weekend’s suspenseful script pulls no punches on the intrigue from the moment the couple decide to visit Luc’s hometown village. There, his parents, Meki (Keppy Ekpeyong Bassey) and Omicha (Gloria Anomie-Young), await their arrival. The discomfort built in from Luc’s dismay about his childhood memories offers a suspenseful environment that will have you questioning the source of his grudge. We eventually find out, but the lead-up to the finale is what provides the entertainment. The mere fact that the truth comes later is what keeps us glued to the screen in wonder.

Michael Ogunlade’s chilling score works wonders for the genre-blending atmosphere, keeping a consistent ambiance of terror lurking in the shadows.

During the anniversary party, Oriahi does a great job incorporating Nigerian culture into his filmmaking and character dynamics. Here, we also meet Luc’s sister Kama (Meg Otanwa) and her abusive boyfriend Zeido (James Gardiner). As tension rises due to reasons I won’t dare spoil, a natural curiosity progresses. The narrative is no longer about meeting his in-laws — it leads to the discovery of their secrets and why they’re behaving as if the entire village lives in fear of them. Michael Ogunlade’s chilling score works wonders for the genre-blending atmosphere, keeping a consistent ambiance of terror lurking in the shadows.

The Weekend Finally Reveals The Secrets Of The Story In Its Third Act

And they lead to an explosive finale that is pure entertainment

Luc greets his family in The Weekend movie still

With a story like this one, it’s important to play its cards right and at the optimal times. Luckily, fans of the genre finally get a taste of what the script has been building towards in the third act. The result is an explosive showdown of unraveling secrets and violence. For Luc, his biggest fear becomes Nikiya’s reality, which is everything he’d hoped to avoid by not returning to his village. When all is finally revealed, his psyche takes a turn for the worse. Everything we’ve known about this family up to this point comes crashing down in gut-churning fashion.

A chilling script that relies on character dynamics over jump scares, The Weekend is the kind of nail-biting horror/thriller the genre needs more of. Overcoming its budget limitations was no easy feat, but Oriahi did it by relying on his screenwriters to tell an entertaining story about family lies and secrets. Aniunoh and Franklin are exceptional as Nikiya and Luc, and their chemistry is outstanding in moments of love and terror. Thanks to Oriahi’s directing style and Ogunlade’s emotionally penetrating score, this horrifying tale of family secrets will have you questioning if it’s ever really worth it to meet your in-laws.

The Weekend premiered at the 2024 Tribeca Film Festival.


  • Aniunoh and Franklin are exceptional as Nikiya and Luc.
  • Michael Ogunlade?s chilling score works wonders for the genre-bending atmosphere.
  • The third act is an explosive finale.

  • The secrets aren’t revealed until the third act, testing the audience’s patience.

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