The Malayalam film industry, also known as Mollywood, is known for producing well-made movies that often address a wide range of social, political, and cultural issues. The films are known for their strong performances, well-written scripts, and realistic portrayal of society. Their realistic approach to social issues such as poverty, corruption, and discrimination draws attention of movie lovers irrespective of language barrier. Deepicting the lives of ordinary people with an excellent way of storytelling is the highlight of Malayalam movies. Out of many worth watching movies, we have picked the top 25 best Malayalam movies on Amazon Prime.
1) Ustad Hotel (2012)
Ustad Hotel is a heartwarming story that showcases the bond between family, the power of tradition and culture, the love of food, and the search for one’s own identity. Directed by Anwar Rasheed and written by Anjali Menon, the film stars the handsome Dulquer Salmaan, talented Thilakan, and the beautiful Nithya Menen.
Ustad Hotel is the story of Faizal, a young man working in a five-star hotel. However, his grandfather, a Muslim scholar, wants him to take over the family’s traditional hotel, the Ustad Hotel. The film explores the relationship between Faizal and his grandfather, and also the love saga between Ustad and Shahana. It also deals with the theme of food and how it brings people together, regardless of their backgrounds.
2) 22 Female Kottayam (2012)
22 Female Kottayam is a women-centric Malayalam movie showcasing the issues faced by women such as sexual violence and its aftermath. It is the story of women who migrate for work and the difficulties faced in an unknown land. The film is a strong critique of the patriarchal society and its attitude toward women and their rights.
22 Female Kottayam tells the story of Tessa, a nurse working in the Gulf, who returns to India after being sexually assaulted by her employer. She decides to take revenge on the perpetrator, but her plan goes awry and leads to a series of unexpected events. The film explores themes of sexual violence, gender discrimination, and the plight of women who are forced to migrate for work.
3) Thondimuthalum Driksakshiyum (2017)
It is proven that movies starring Fahadh Faasil are worth watching! The versatile actor chooses his script carefully and presents them on screen by living through the character. Thondimuthalum Driksakshiyum deals with issues of morality, justice, and power. It also highlights the issues faced by the common people in the society.
Set in a small village in Kerala Thondimuthalum Driksakshiyum tells the story of a young couple, Sreeja and Prasad. They are traveling to the city to register their marriage. On the way, they are stopped by a police officer, who accuses Prasad of stealing a gold chain from the couple. The couple then caught in a legal battle to prove Prasad’s innocence.
4) Drishyam (1 &2)
After the successful hit of Drishyam q, part 2 of the same movie is released which kept its promises and met all the expectations of the fans. It continues the story of the first part and delves deeper into the characters and their emotions. Drishyam 2 is one of the most-watched movies of 2021 on Amazon Prime because of its psychological thriller screenplay and the legend Mohanlal.
In the sequel, Georgekutty and his family are living a peaceful life, but their past comes back to haunt them when new evidence comes to light in the case of the murder they were falsely accused of committing. The film explores the themes of family, guilt, and redemption as Georgekutty fights to clear his name and protect his family.
5) Lucifer (2019)
Lucifer is a 2019 Indian Malayalam-language action crime film directed by Prithviraj Sukumaran and starring Mohanlal in the lead role. It explores the themes of politics, power, and crime, in a well-crafted screenplay that keeps the audience engaged throughout. Great casting and good performances are the plus factors of the movie.
Lucifer tells the story of Stephen Nedumpally, a former MLA who is forced to take over as the leader of his political party after the death of its leader. Stephen’s life takes a turn when he’s forced to confront a powerful underworld don named Lucifer, who is determined to destroy his political career and personal life. The story is a battle between good and evil, as Stephen fights to survive and protect his loved ones.
6) Charlie (2015)
‘Charlie’ movie is a beautiful saga about chasing love and keeping memories alive. It makes you feel young as you watch Tessa, a young woman falling in love with a man named Charlie, who has a short memory. Dulquer Salmaan and Parvathy have out performed the role. It has been remade into Tamil as ‘Maara’.
Tessa is a college student struggling with her studies and her personal life. One day, she meets Charlie at a bookstore, and they start talking. They quickly fall in love, but Tessa soon discovers that Charlie has a rare disorder that causes him to forget everything that happens to him within a short period of time. Despite this, Tessa is determined to make the relationship work and does everything she can to help Charlie remember their moments together. She chases him in all those places he wanders but every time she keeps missing him in just the blink of an eye.
7) Home (2021)
‘Home’ is another beautiful Malayalam movie with a great message. Written and directed by Rojin Thomas, Home received massive appreciation for its story, background score, cinematography, social relevance, characterization, and performances of the lead cast.
Home is a simple middle class family drama that tells us the importance of the family. Oliver Twist wants to be tech-savvy because he wants to stay updated with the current trends and also be connected with his kids who are always busy on their phones or computer. Oliver tries hard to mingle but the boys always keep him away from their personal life. Oliver’s innocence shines throughout the movie.
8) KGF (1 &2)
KGF1 was released in 2018 with Yash as in the lead role and the direction by Prashanth Neel. It received huge appreciation from all over India because of its cinematography, soundtrack, and the performance of the lead cast, especially Yash. After the release of part one, fans were eagerly waiting for the second part which took longer time than expected because of the pandemic.
The story of KGF revolves around the Kolar Gold Field and the film is set in the 1970s and 80s. The discovery of gold mine in Kolar makes a few powerful men and the government mine the field illegally by using poor people. Rocky, a young man, living in Mumbai, becomes involved with this notorious gold mafia. Rocky eager for power and wealth, uses every opportunity in the right way to climb the ladder within a short span of time. At the end of part one, Rocky takes over the Gold mine and become one of the most powerful criminals. KGF2 revolves around Rocky’s life in the gold field and how the government tries to control him and his actions.
9) Joji (2021)
Joji on Amazon Prime is a thrilling psychological Malayalam film that explores the themes of power, wealth, and the human psyche. Fahadh Faasil’s performance as Joji is one of his best performances. The soundtrack and the background score have made a positive impact on the movie making it a must-watch Malayalam movie overall.
It is the story of Joji, a wealthy businessman who leads a double life. Joji is a loving husband and father, but also a cruel and ruthless businessman. The film continues as Joji’s past catches up with him, and he is forced to confront the truth about himself and his actions. The story is an exploration of the psyche of a man who has everything but is willing to do anything to keep it.
10) C U Soon (2020)
Another best movies of Fahadh Faasil and we are totally in love with the making of this movie. The movie explores the themes of technology, relationships, and the human psyche. The entire film was shot during the COVID-19 pandemic and was one of the first films in India to be shot and released during the pandemic. It was directly released on Amazon Prime and many people have appreciated the effort made by the team in order to present this movie.
C U Soon is the story of Jimmy, a software engineer who is asked by his friend to help track down his missing fiancé, Anu. The film follows Jimmy as he uses technology to try and find Anu, but as he delves deeper into the mystery, he uncovers secrets and lies that threaten to destroy the lives of everyone involved.
11) AK Ayyappanum Koshiyum (2020)
This movie made buzz with its performances, direction, and storytelling. Starring Prithviraj Sukumaran and Biju Menon, directed and written by Sachy, AK Ayyappanum Koshiyum talks about power and its corrupting influence. In this movie, Amitabh Bachchan appears in a song that is a tribute to the Indian army.
Ayyappan Nair, a retired havildar, and Koshi, a local government official, are locked in a bitter feud after Koshi impounds Ayyappan’s vehicle. The film follows their escalating conflict as they both dig in their heels and refuse to back down, leading to a series of violent confrontations.
12) Yatra (2019)
This movie is about Y. S. Rajasekhara Reddy, the former Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh. The film delves into his political career, his leadership, his contributions to the state, his personal life, and his struggles to remain in power. Mammootty in the lead role as Y. S. Rajasekhara Reddy and is directed by Mahi V Raghav.
Yatra reveals the personality of Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy, popularly known as YSR, a powerful politician, and his journey to becoming the Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh. Throughout the movie, YSR is shown as a leader who is deeply connected to the people of Andhra Pradesh and is committed to improving their lives. He is shown working tirelessly to bring development and prosperity to the state and is willing to go to great lengths to ensure that the people of Andhra Pradesh are not left behind.
13) Middle Class Melodies (2020)
Middle Class Melodies Malayalam movie on Amazon Prime is a heartwarming coming-of-age story that deals with the struggles of middle-class people, difficulties faced while chasing one’s dreams, and the power of family and friends. The film stars Anand Devarakonda and Varsha Bollamma in the lead roles.
The movie tells the story of Raghava, a young man who dreams of opening a restaurant in his hometown, but faces various obstacles and struggles to make his dream a reality. Middle Class Melodies explores themes of family, friendship, and the pursuit of one’s dreams in a small town setting.
14) Sye Raa Narasimha Reddy (2019)
One of the unique Malayalam movies where you will see actors from other film industries. Amitabh Bachchan from Bollywood (Hindi), Sudeep from Sandalwood (Kannada), Tamannaah from Tollywood (Telugu), Vijay Sethupathi and Nayanathara from Kollywood (Tamil). This is a historical action film that tells the story of a freedom fighter.
Uyyalawada Narasimha Reddy was a freedom fighter who led a rebellion against the British East India Company in the 1840s. He is one of the unsung heroes of the Indian independence movement. The movie portrays the story of his fight for freedom and his prominent leadership in a movement against British colonial rule in India.
15) Rocketry – The Nambi Effect (2022)
Originally made in Tamil and later dubbed into other Indian languages, Rocketry – The Nambi Effect is based on the life story of an Isro Scientist Nambi Narayanan. It is directed and acted by R. Madhavan who believed in Nambi Narayanan’s story and decided to reveal it to the world through this movie. Madhavan transformation as Nambi Narayanan is outstanding and he lives the character throughout the movie.
In 1994, ISro Scientist, Nambi Narayanan, was falsely accused of espionage and arrested. Story revolves around his contributions to the Indian space program, as well as the circumstances that led to his arrest and the challenges he faced in clearing his name. The film portrays the story of his fight for justice and his determination to clear his name.
16) Vakeel Saab (2021)
‘Vakeel Saab’ movie is a legal drama that provides an in-depth look at the fight for justice and the impact of the case on three young women. It is a remake of the popular Hindi movie “Pink” where Amitabh Bachchan acted in the place of Pawan Kalyan.
The movie tells the story of Vakeel Saab, a lawyer who takes on the case of three young women who are falsely accused of a crime. The film explores the themes of gender injustice, the legal system, and the fight for justice. The film showcases the biased and judgemental behavior of the legal system and as well as society towards women.
17) Trance (2020)
Trance movie is a psychological thriller that provides an in-depth look at the power dynamics and the emotional journey of the characters. The film stars Fahadh Faasil, Nazriya Nazim, and Gautham Vasudev Menon in the lead roles. It is one of the worth watching Malayalam movies with its contemplated storyline and excellent performance by the whole cast.
The story begins with Viju Prasad, a motivational speaker and also a self-help guru. He is approached by a businessman named Amal, owner of a large business empire, to help him recover from a financial crisis. Amal offers Viju a large sum of money to help him revive his business. Viju accepts the offer, but he soon finds out that the business is not what it seems from the outside. He is soon caught in a web of lies and deceit, as he discovers that Amal has a hidden agenda.
18) Kumbalangi Nights (2019)
The renowned filmmaker in the Malayalam film industry, Madhu C. Narayanan has successfully gained attention for the Kumbalangi Nights movie. It became instantly popular because of its strong storytelling, positive word of mouth, and recognition in the award functions,
It is the story of four brothers who live in a small village called Kumbalangi in Kerala, India. The eldest brother, Saji, is a local fisherman who supports the family, while the second brother, Franky, is a loner who is often bullied by others. The third brother, Bobby, is a womanizer who is only interested in having fun, and the youngest brother, Baby, is a kind-hearted and innocent child.
Kumbalangi Nights explores themes of masculinity, family dynamics, and the importance of social connections. It also deals with the issues of poverty, unemployment, and the struggles of the working-class community in Kerala.
19) Jallikattu (2019)
Set in a small village called Chundanoor in Kerala, India, Jallikattu is an Indian Malayalam-language thriller film directed by Lijo Jose Pellissery. It gained entry to the 93rd Academy Awards in the Best International Feature Film category thus becoming India’s first movie to reach this platform.
The film follows the events that unfold in the village after the buffalo escapes, as the men of the village come together to hunt it down. The buffalo’s escape triggers a series of events that brings to light the repressed anger, violence, and pent-up frustrations of the men in the village. The film also explores the relationship between men and animals, and the impact of modernity on traditional societies.
20) Meppadiya (2022)
Meppadiya movie is an illustration of how a corrupt society and bureaucracy change an easygoing person into an animal. Unni Mukundan is in the lead role and the film is produced by Unni Mukundan films. Meppadiya is probably one of the best movies from Unni Mukundan. Inspired by the true incidents and the life of a common man, Meppadiya touches every person with its reality.
The movie revolves around Jayakrishnan, a happy soul living his life. Things go south when Jayakrishnan enters the real estate business with Varkey. He loses his home, and land and ends up buying a land that is marked by the central government for a railway project. The film continues to show his struggles and the bitter truth about the legal system.
21) Kantara (2022)
Kantara is a Kannada movie written and directed by Rishab Shetty and Directed by Vijay Kiragandur under Hombale Films. After its massive success in Karnataka and all over the world, the movie was dubbed into other Indian languages including Malayalam. Now you can watch the Kantara movie in Malayalam on Prime Video. Kantara movie is all about conflicts between man and nature. It shows our rich culture, beliefs, traditions, and values followed for hundreds of years.
In 1847, a King makes a truce with tribal people and their god for giving him peace. He agrees to give his own land to those people. After many generations, King’s family tries to get the land back but that was stopped by the god itself to protect the people. Shiva, the protagonist of the story protects his people from the forest department but the threat to the land came from someone whom he believed as his own. Kantara excels with its outstanding performance by the casting, storytelling, music, cinematography and most importantly upholding the traditions.
22) Pada (2022)
Based on the true incident that occurred in 1996, Pada is a political social thriller movie available on Amazon Prime. In 1996, the district collector of Palakkad (A city in Kerala) was held captive by a group of people. This was done to draw the attention of people and demand the government repeal the controversial Adivasi Land Amendment Bill.
The film starts with a group of four men in different places and planning for something big. They execute their plan and take hostage of the Palakkad collector. They identify themselves as ‘Ayyankali Pada’, activists working for the welfare of tribals, and their current resolve is to keep the collector as a hostage and bargain with the current government. The movie reveals the real struggles of the Adivasi tribal and the director Kamal K. M. has done justice to the events depicted in the movie.
23) Virus (2019)
Virum Malayalam movie is the true story of the 2018 Nipah virus outbreak in the state of Kerala. Watching this movie may remind you of the Covid outbreak. The realistic approach of the movie when a new virus starts spreading in humans is a plus factor.
‘Virus’ movie revolves around the events that took place in the Kozhikode district of Kerala, where the Nipah virus outbreak occurred in May 2018. Focusing on the struggles and challenges faced by the medical community, government officials, and the general public in dealing with the outbreak. The film follows the journey of a group of doctors, nurses, and health workers who were at the forefront of the fight against the virus.
24) Maheshinte Prathikaaram (2016)
Maheshinte Prathikaaram movie has won awards in the Kerala Film State awards for best art director and best sound designer. Its simple yet heartwarming story hence will not fail to impress you. Undoubtedly Maheshinte Prathikaaram is one of the worth watching movies available on Amazon prime.
The film tells the story of a young photographer named Mahesh, who lives in a small village in Kerala state. Mahesh living his contented life with his family and friends, one day gets beaten by a group of men from a neighboring village. This attack completely changes Mahesh’s life. As he thrives for revenge against those men, Mahesh starts to gain a new perspective on life as he talks more with his childhood friend, Soumya. Thus movie revolves around love, friendship, and revenge all at the same time with an amazing screenplay and cinematography.
25) Malik (2021)
Malik is one of the intense Malayalam crime thriller movies directed by Mahesh Narayanan and Fahadh Faasil in the lead role. The movie is about a Gulf-based Indian businessman, Rasheed who is falsely accused of a crime and is forced to fight for his innocence.
In the movie, Rasheed tries to clear his name and prove his innocence. As he delves deeper into the case, he discovers that the crime he is accused of is part of a larger conspiracy involving powerful people in the Gulf region. Rasheed’s quest for justice takes him through a dangerous and twisting path, as he navigates the corrupt and ruthless power structures of the Gulf.