It’s the last week of December and it’s the time we take stock of the things we did the whole year. To take a note of the good things we did and the things gone wrong. And hoping to improve we take resolutions for the New year. Many people, take resolutions for the new year, but I’m not sure that how many of them are able to hold on for it at least 2 weeks, let alone 52 weeks.
So, lets start the count down to the Top 5 Movies of the year.
It was a fruitful year for the Malayalam cinema. We had both big films as well as small films making their mark. Around 150 plus releases happened this year. And more 20 plus movies went on to make profit, which speaks for the good situation we have. As in the past only a handful of movies would make the cut. So it’s an improvement on that front. The blooming of the multiplex and converting the Big theaters to small theaters, have helped in making more films profitable. And also bringing crowds to small films. Take the case of Joseph and Sudani from Nigeria, which were small films (in terms of budget and not in terms of content) becoming big hits. And it’s the sign of the positive wave continuing and creating small beautiful films.
Catch my list of the Top 5 Malayalam Movies
5. Njan Marykutty
This movie stars Jayasurya as a transsexual. It tells an inspiring tale as she braves all the odds stacked against and comes out with flying colors. Jayasurya shines as Mary as he make us sympathies with her, on the trauma the society forces her to go through. Though the movie is simple and predictable, but it stands apart form the rest as the director dealt with the subject with perfect control and made aware of the movie goers with the mentality of these special persons.
The M Padmakumar directorial is a thriller and has many similarities with police movies of the past. But the tight screenplay and the amazing performance of Joju George ( which was a bold casting) as the lead made it an exciting thriller. Malayalam cinema used to churn out many Police crime thrillers but now the number has come down, and now enters the finely crafted Joseph. It won the hearts of the audience and critics alike.
It was one heck of a movie. It combined historical period drama on the first half and then a mass masala in the second half bound by satiric storytelling. This genre was never attempted in Malayalam cinema nor in any other film industry. Murali Gopi’s finely nuanced screenplay and along with the director’s effort in presenting the historical characters made it an interesting watch. Also the creators toyed with the idea of cinema in a cinema. And they could take full creative freedom to a level never seen before creating a meta movie, which was also a one of a kind. And the detailing of the movie along with the action sequences was a audio visual treat, esp the fight on top of the moving train was something of which was seen in Bond movies. Making the Rathish Ambat’s debut directorial, one of the best cinematic experiences of the year.
Also a word about the other two big budgeted movies, Kayamkulam Kochunni and Odiyan. And the reason why they don’t fit into my list while Kamarasambhavam does.
Kayamkulam Kochunni, the retelling of the famed robber. It had every ingredient to be great- Roshan Andrews-Sanjay-Bobby team, Nivin Pauly as Kochunni, Good cast, Good technicians. But the tepid screenplay made it worse. Mohanlal’s cameo and the last action sequence helped the movie to be a success.
Catch my Review of Kayamkulam Kochunni
Odiyan, the hype the movie created was a Tsunami and what translated to the screen was a ripple. The director and the writer couldn’t utilize the myth well and ended up giving us a half baked attempt.
Catch my detailed Review of Odiyan
Though both movies had great premise and everything but Kammarasambhavam exceeded as a cinematic marvel and finds itself at third spot in my list.
Though it’s baffling, why this movie failed in the BO while the other two minted gold. And I know many brickbats will be thrown at me for keeping this movie in the Top 3. But whatever be the opinion of others, I rate this movie highly.
2. Sudani from Nigeria
The heart warming tale of a sevens football manager Majeed (Soubin Shahir) and his foreign footballer. It starts as a slow football drama, but the twist happens when the Nigerian striker gets injured. The situation forces Majeed to invite the Nigerian to his home. The sparsely English speaking Nigerian and Soubin’s mother strikes a bonhomie. And then the movie goes onto offer one of the best heart warming and emotional tale we have seen in recent times. The last scene when the Barcelona fan Majeed swap shirts with Sudani who’s wearing a Real Madrid jersey was a goosebumps moment for the football fans. And director Zakariya and the team deserves kudos for making this small movie an endearing watch.
1. Ee Ma Yu
The best movie of the year, by far. And the awards the movie is grabbing is a testimony of the masterpiece it is. The movie has funeral as its premise and the hassles the son faces when his dad passes away. The movie follows as his son (Chemban), tries his best to give a befitting funeral as that was his father’s last wish. A clout of mystery is in the air on how the father died and the audience is made to keep on guessing. Lijo Jose Pellisery’s continues his top form as he finds a perfect balance with magical realism. The movie criticizes the greed of man and the agony of people while in difficult situations. Also it makes some serious situations looks so funny. And all these make this engrossing dark comedy my favorite pic of the year.
Honorable mentions – Movies with merit but failed to make the list
Eeda – A new take on Romeo and Juliet set in Political Kannur
Captain – A perfect Sport Biopic of the late footballer VP Sathyan
Movies which stood out because of theme or relevance or portrayal
Ente Mezhukuthiri Athazhangal
Kuttan Pillayude Sivarathri
Movies which I couldn’t watch but have heard rave reviews about it
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Gautham Jayan GopiKrishna