'Falimy', featuring Basil Joseph, Jagadish, and Manju Pillai in pivotal roles, is a delightful family entertainer. The title itself cleverly plays on the word 'family,' hinting at the movie's focus on a dysfunctional family and their adventures. The film is generously sprinkled with deftly placed hilarious moments, keeping the audience engaged from start to finish. It adopts a road movie style, reminiscent of Hollywood's 'Little Miss Sunshine,' with its quirky characters adding to the resemblance.
Directed by Nithish Sahadev, 'Falimy' unfolds the journey of a typical family from Thiruvananthapuram heading to Banaras to fulfil their grandfather's lifelong dream of visiting Kashi, and chaos ensues shortly after they embark on their adventure. The movie's strength lies in its simplicity; it avoids being overly ambitious. It maintains a straightforward storyline with compelling characters, and the actors seamlessly bring their roles to life, adding to the film's overall strength. Despite the absence of deep-delved character sketches, each persona carries a distinct identity, allowing the audience to grasp their nature effortlessly.
The family encounters a series of challenges throughout their journey, and witnessing them navigate each hurdle proves both interesting and amusing. Basil exudes his trademark charm, striking the right balance of humour. Jagadish and Manju Pillai deliver composed and grounded performances; their characters, while not inherently funny, find humour in the situations they face and their interactions with each other and their children. Sandeep Pradeep, portraying the couple's younger son, adds a hilarious touch, reminiscent of Naslen in many movies. Meenaraj takes on the role of the witty and adventurous grandfather with flair.
The latter part of the film unfolds entirely in North India, particularly in regions like Banaras, skillfully capturing the struggles of a Malayali family in an unfamiliar territory. The precision with which the movie depicts their Thiruvananthapuram slang and gestures in this unknown land proves to be entertaining. The director successfully navigates comedic sequences with ease and dexterity. While the second half tends to feel a bit stretched, with some scenes lagging, the overall comedic essence remains intact. Beyond being a comedy, 'Falimy' also explores the theme of human loneliness at various stages of life. Basil, Jagadish, and Meenaraj's characters embody this sentiment, each with unique reasons contributing to their struggles. Manju Pillai's character serves as a unifying force, holding together the men in her family.
'Falimy' is undeniably an engaging and funny film, marking a refreshing addition to Malayalam cinema after a considerable period – an exciting reason to consider it a must-watch at the theatres.