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Journey of Love 18+ director Arun D Jose: There’s a definite shift from realistic films to larger-than-life movies

Director Arun D Jose’s latest movie Journey of Love 18+ is gearing up for its OTT release on Sony LIV

Journey of Love 18+ director Arun D Jose: There’s a definite shift from realistic films to larger-than-life movies
A still from Journey of Love 18+ and (R) Arun D Jose

Last Updated: 03.29 PM, Sep 11, 2023


Amid the realistic films, family entertainers and ‘mass’ action entertainers, filmmakers such as Arun D Jose and Gireesh AD have managed to tap into the space for the young-adult genre in Malayalam. With films such as Thaneer Mathan Dinangal and Jo & Jo tasting success at the box office, it’s also got makers pushing more such content.

Arun’s latest movie Journey of Love 18+, which had Naslen, Meenakshi and Mathew Thomas in the lead, is now gearing up for its OTT release on Sony LIV. In an exclusive chat with OTTplay, the filmmaker tells us that he is happy with the feedback of the film after its theatrical release as it had “gone on to become a hit”.

Naslen K Gafoor and Mathew Thomas in Journey of Love 18+
Naslen K Gafoor and Mathew Thomas in Journey of Love 18+

Arun D Jose on exploring the young-adult genre

What makes Arun’s films different is how he has used the young-adult genre to tell impactful stories that would appeal to a large section of the audience, and not just the youth. “I had tried that with both Jo & Jo and Journey of Love 18+. Apart from skin-deep issues, I believe we can communicate deeper issues through these young characters and these films were a result of that,” he said. Journey of Love 18+ revolved around two youngsters who elope after their families oppose their relationship.

Ask him if just targeting the younger audience comes with its set of risks and he says, “It’s the same for every film that releases; the youngsters are the first group of viewers to watch any movie in theatres. Our first priority is to reach and entertain the youth audience. It’s only after that that the subject we are trying to convey travels to the other audience.”

Poster of  Journey Of Love 18+
Poster of Journey Of Love 18+

Malayalam cinema’s shift to larger-than-life movies

Given that his films have a largely younger cast, thereby a limited audience, does it make it challenging for such films to work at the box office, especially when there are multiple releases each week in Malayalam?

“People now prefer going to theatres to watch larger-than-life movies. That shift is evident. They are willing to wait to watch the smaller films on OTT. So, there needs to be some element in these films to attract them to theatres. It’s a Herculean task for smaller films now to attract the audience to theatres. You can only do this through entertainment. I believe the season of realistic films is over now, and it's the turn of ‘mass’ movies. It’s a cyclic process,” Arun explains.

Arun D Jose
Arun D Jose

On whether he is taking the shift into consideration for his next script, the director says, “I also think that there is a space for these young-adult films in between the larger-than-life movies. People always wish for change. That said, I haven’t decided what my next project is even though I am working on a script and there are also ongoing discussions about a few other projects.”


Journey of Love 18+ OTT release

Arun says that he is eagerly waiting for the feedback of the audience after Journey of Love 18+’s OTT release. “We couldn’t release the movie in other states due to some issues. A platform like Sony LIV is known for its quality content and we are hoping the subject will also connect with a wider audience,” he says.

Apart from Naslen, Mathew Thomas and Meenakshi, the movie also has Saafboi and Nikhila Vimal in pivotal roles.

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