Here’s a list of some of the critically-panned Malayalam movies to release this year
Last Updated: 07.50 AM, Dec 16, 2022
Since the pandemic, Malayalam movies have been feted across the country with some of the biggest filmmakers such as RRR director SS Rajamouli and Vikram helmer Lokesh Kanagaraj picking films from the industry as their favourites this year. But it’s not all peaches and cream in the industry, which brings out over 120 movies a year and the number has only gone higher in 2022, with a long backlog of releases that were pending since the pandemic finding their way to the theatres.
As the year ends, OTTPlay picks some of the worst Malayalam films to release this year – that offered no entertainment value despite the expectations accompanying them and also set a template of what not to do in the future.
Aaraattu, in the minds of its filmmaker B Unnikrishnan, scriptwriter Udaykrishna and its star Mohanlal, was the kind of movie that would have brought people back to the theatre in hordes. But that sadly didn’t happen with the movie having all the trappings of a Udaykrishna entertainer, which by 2022 had already become too stale. As a spoof the movie would have worked better but the makers’ bigger ambitions only led to a greater fall and a colossal disappointment even for die-hard Mohanlal fans.
Streaming on: Amazon Prime Video
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It should have been a sign for the team to revisit the content when even OTT platforms had turned down the offer for a direct-to-OTT release for Mohanlal’s investigative thriller that dealt “with a theme that has never been shown in mainstream cinema before”, according to its filmmaker Vysakh. If Monster is how a leading director would highlight the issues faced by the LGBTQ community, then it’s better that Malayalam filmmakers don’t ever venture there. The movie was again a huge letdown, especially considering that it came from the same team that brought Pulimurugan a few years ago.
Streaming on: Disney+ Hotstar
Director Rosshan Andrrews, who has been behind some great films such as Udayananu Thaaram, Mumbai Police and How Old Are You?, probably had his worst film in his career with Saturday Night. The movie had a stellar cast in Nivin Pauly, Siju Wilson, Saiju Kurup and Aju Varghese, and on paper their chemistry in previous films also should spell magic. But the writing is so shoddy and the sequences even more dreary that the actors were trapped in a film that extracted their most soulless performances yet. We doubt after seeing the rushes, if even the filmmaker was convinced whether his film would connect with the audience. In case you are wondering, it didn’t.
Streaming on: Sun NXT (Release date to be announced)
Jack N' Jill
Ace cinematographer Santosh Sivan, who previous Malayalam directorials Urumi and Ananthabhadram transported the audience to some of the most beautiful locations through riveting storylines, seems to have lost all that trust built up over the years, with his latest film Jack N’ Jill. The movie had some of the best actors in the industry – Manju Warrier, Soubin Shahir and Basil Joseph – almost clowning around for the entire duration of a film that was whacky to the point of being inane. It's no wonder that the audience deemed it a waste of talent, time and ticket.
Streaming on: Amazon Prime Video
Coming from the pen of Thaneermathan Dinangal scribe Dinoy Paulose, the expectations for this small film was high. But it’s a clear example of how redundancy can be a writer’s worst enemy. The jokes in the film land flat and acting even from actors such as Naslen, Sharafudheen and Grace Antony seem forced. Dinoy tried to repeat it again with Vishudha Mejo months later, but it was met with the same result.
Streaming on: ZEE5
This year had several veteran Mollywood filmmakers bringing out their movies including Shaji Kailas and Joshiy. While those films also had the backing of some young writers who infused some fresh ideas, Autorickshawkkarante Bharya was basically a textbook of how unimaginative a film’s screenplay can be. Writer M Mukundan’s effort to script the movie doesn’t yield the expected results but for the audience it’s one expected scene after another, testing the limits of their patience.
Streaming on: Manorama Max