Written by Manoj Kumar R
| Bengaluru |

Updated: December 9, 2020 8:47:42 am


Trance is streaming on Amazon Prime Video.

A depressed man with god-complex, a naive girl at the edge of hell, and two men willing to die or kill for their pride, Malayalam filmmakers and actors continued to inspire respect and admiration of movie buffs with vivid, captivating and meaningful stories in 2020 as well.

Here is a list of the best Malayalam movies that released in 2020:

Ayyappanum Koshiyum: The premise of late director Sachy’s Ayyappanum Koshiyum is quite similar to Driving License (it was written by Sachy). Two individuals of different social and class backgrounds, who have no prior history of enmity, engage in a fight to the death feud, largely stemming from their bruised egos. But, Ayyappanum Koshiyum is ten times more entertaining than Driving License. Sachy was at his prime as a storyteller while exploring the possibilities of what happens when two men of some consequence are forced into a difficult situation, where both of them can’t get out with their reputation, ego and life still intact. Ayyappanum Koshiyum signalled the arrival of a filmmaker with a great aptitude to use all the tents of mainstream cinema to make a meaningful movie with solid entertainment value.

Varane Avashyamund: Director Anoop Sathyan’s romantic comedy is about a modern-day girl trying to find herself a match in an old-fashioned way: matrimonial services. The film offers a lot of feel-good moments and addresses the social stigma around single older men and women trying to find love again. Also, Shobana as a single mother and hopeless romantic looks stunning in the movie. And the film also gives Suresh Gopi a memorable role after a long, long time.

Kappela: Newcomer Muhammad Musthafa’s Kappela had a limited release in cinema halls in Kerala in March. However, it became a huge hit and garnered positive reactions when it dropped on Netflix. The film, starring Anna Ben, Sreenath Bhasi and Roshan Mathew, showcases how unsuspecting young girls are wooed and trapped in human trafficking.

Trance: One cannot help but be thankful for having had the opportunity to experience director Anwar Rasheed’s Trance in cinema halls before all things went south due to the pandemic. Vincent Vadakkan’s dense script is a scathing indictment of religious dogmatism that feeds off people’s fear. And Fahadh Faasil delivered one of the best performances of his career.

CU Soon: Mahesh Narayanan’s computer screen-based movie, which mainly plays out between three characters played by Fahadh Faasil, Roshan Mathew and Darshana Rajendran, explores how the idea of privacy has become obsolete in this age of information. And what’s more, the film was entirely shot with an iPhone. Now, if that’s not path-breaking in mainstream Malayalam cinema, then what is?

Halal Love Story: After his wonderful debut film Sudani from Nigeria, director Zakariya Mohammed again impressed the audience with Halal Love Story. The film is about a bunch of religious men who set out to make a movie that would fit their description of ‘Halal’, which means “permissible or lawful” in the Quran. And what follows is a close examination of a community which is obsessed with conservatism. And Zakariya examines it without rush or judgement.

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