Hi, I’m Growing Up Image

Hi, I’m Growing Up

By Bobby LePire | May 13, 2024

Hi, I’m Growing Up is the feature-length debut of its writer, director, and star, Funmi Adetola. Adetola stars as Mike, a recent high graduate. Now, he’s biding his summer break by doing very little. Instead, he would be if it weren’t for his mom (Ejibunmi Adetola) and dad (Motunrayo Adetola) having him and his sister, Ayo (Dipo Adetola), do a majority of the household chores. As if that wasn’t enough, Mike needs to write a speech for his upcoming going away party at the behest (nagging) of his mom.

Unfortunately, Mike is having a severe case of writer’s block. So, he spends this day doing anything else but writing the speech. Make his father a cup of tea? Sure. Annoy Ayo and her friend? Why not? As Mike distracts himself, he begins to understand more about his place within his family. Will Mike be able to write that speech, or does he unravel the frays at the edge of his family’s dynamic?

Let’s get the negative out of the way first. The audio quality throughout Hi, I’m Growing Up is utter s**t. The music, often classical, is almost always drowning out the dialogue. If the person talking is not directly behind the camera, then they sound muted, even unintelligible at times. Proper subtitles weren’t a viewing option, and the closed captions were definitely incorrect at times, though what was meant could be figured out within context.

“…Mike is having a severe case of writer’s block. So, he spends this day doing anything else but…”

Plus, the story has very little stakes. The importance of the impending going away party is never truly felt. Is Mike the first one to go to college? Well, considering his dad is a doctor, the safe answer is no. To be fair, the reason Mike must write a speech, even though it’s for him, is abundantly clear and delivers some of the best jokes in the film.

Speaking of humor, the screenplay for Hi, I’m Growing Up is spot-on. Specifically, the interactions between Mike and Ayo are hilarious. The opening sees Ayo throw a glass of water onto Mike to wake him up. His response to this startling and uncalled-for action is hilarious, as is her retort as to why she did it. Of course, this is helped by the real-life siblings’ chemistry as well as their ability to inhabit their roles. I don’t know how close their characters are to their actual personas, but they feel natural in their respective parts.

Directing-wise, Adetola keeps things running smoothly, audio aside. The cinematography is simple, but the edits are clever. The integration of an anime-inspired daydream (hallucination?) is a genius move. It breaks up the style, is fun, and is action-packed.

Hi, I’m Growing Up is a cute trifle of a film. The actors have good comedic timing, and the screenplay is filled with genuinely funny parts. While the low-stakes story and the audio issues prevent this from being great, it is a fun and funny one-time watch.

For more information about Hi, I’m Growing Up, visit its official Facebook page.

Hi, I'm Growing Up (2024)

Directed and Written: Funmi Adetola

Starring: Funmi Adetola, Ejibunmi Adetola, Motunrayo Adetola, Dipo Adetola, etc.

Movie score: 7/10

Hi, I'm Growing Up Image


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