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Farhad Dalal
Farhad Dalal
1.5 Star popcorn reviewss


Onto the final release of the weekend but I still have plenty of leftovers. But before that I decided to watch and review another Malayalam film Alone which is streaming on Hotstar. The film marks the second Malayalam film of the week for me and it had a lot to do for my love for Malayalam films.

By now you do know my love for Malayalam films and how much I look forward to watching them. But when it did come to Alone, I was warned by my Youtube Digi Family on NOT to watch it. I was actually surprised given that this is a Mohanlal film! Yes, we do not the man is in the middle of a career slump but quite honestly, the synopsis of the film had me intrigued and I was willing to give the film a fighting chance. So then does Alone manage to impress, lets find out.

Story & Screenplay

Set against the backdrop of the first wave of Covid-19, Alone follows the story of a man who shifts to a new apartment during the pandemic only to experience a supernatural presence in his flat. The story here has an interesting premise but I couldn’t help but think that this film was delayed. The first wave of Covid is really far off now, so much so that the post Covid world does seem to be drastically different now. As normalcy has kickstarted, Covid as a concept does seem outdated in terms of the content onscreen. The screenplay here standing at 2 hours does make for such a tedious watch and I could totally understand on why some members of my digi family did not recommend me this film.

It is often pretty difficult to pen a review for such an uneventful film because you really cannot pick on any points to elaborate. I did have an issue with the drama from scene one itself. When you are mounting a supernatural mystery thriller, you really do not need comedy undertones to the drama. The need of the hour is to build the tension slowly but surely in order to keep the interests of the viewers piqued. But here, the drama did lose me in its opening sequence with its comic undertones which were really not funny. The makers had to additionally keep in mind that this was set against the backdrop of the pandemic and so these were serious times for God Sake!

The proceedings are dull and tedious which is also a testimony of the drama which is set in one place and with a single character. These are the limitations of a setup which need to be countered with some sharp writing. But the writers were trying to merge every possible genre out there. Apart from comedy, there were hints of horror(really half-hearted) and a potential mystery which was interesting on paper but it could never have translated well onscreen, given that the drama had just one character. The mind isn’t programmed to play the guessing game with a set of characters that it doesn’t see/recognise onscreen. So the names being floated just did not make any sense!

I would like to point out the Malayalam film Sunny which did directly premiere on Amazon Prime during the pandemic. I really did enjoy the film because it was true to its character, it did not digress in all directions. Another Tamil film Oththa Seruppu Size 7 does come to mind which was a psychological thriller with one character at one stationary location. And how well was that executed! I did feel that there was a bit of panic on the part of the writers which may have forced them to over do the stuff here. The final revelation is damp followed by a good twist at the end but by then the drama does lose its fair share of the audience. Overall, the screenplay is drab and a big bore!

Dialogues, Music & Direction

The dialogues are just too generic and did not have the weight to hold the attention of the audience. The music is good here and I do enjoy the trend of having English songs in Malayalam films. The BGM needed a resonating and haunting score to draw the audience in the drama. But that wasn’t the case here. The cinematography was also too flashy with weird angles and unnecessary drone shots of the building that did add nothing to the drama. Director Shaji Kalidas misses the mark and how. At no point of time was I invested in the drama and I was just going through the motions as opposed to having an immersive experience. The direction is plain poor, there is no other way to put it.


It often does get tricky with only one character holding the drama together. And for the latter to take place, the performance has to be brilliant in every sense of the word. Mohanlal as Kalidas is good but not great here. The writing just doesn’t allow him to settle and here is where the tone of the drama comes into the picture. Mohanlal’s performance would have been much better had the tone of the drama been a mystery or a thriller from its onset, with the required atmospherics to assist him. As Dilip Kumar has said, no actor can be above the script and it applies here and how!


Alone is such a tedious watch and another Mohanlal film that misses the mark(and by a margin). Available on Hotstar.

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