Review By : Movie Run Time : 1 hour 50 minutes
Genre : Drama
Halal Love Story (aka) Halaal Love Story review
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Production: Aashiq Abu, Amazon Prime Video, Harshad Ali, Jesna Ashim
Cast: Grace Antony, Indrajith Sukumaran, Joju George, Parvathy Thiruvothu, Sharaf U Dheen, Soubin Shahir
Direction: Zakariya Mohammed
Screenplay: Muhsin Parari, Zakariya Mohammed
Music: Bijibal, Rex Vijayan, Shahabaz Aman
Background score: Yakzan-Neha
Cinematography: Ajay Menon
Editing: Saiju Sreedharan
Distribution: Amazon Prime Video

Halal Love Story starring Indrajith Sukumaran, Joju George, Grace Antony, Sharaf U Dheen and celebrated actors like Parvathy Thiruvothu and Soubin Shahir in cameos, amidst others, came with quite a buzz, courtesy its maker, Zakariya Mohammed who had earlier given us the crackling, Sudani from Nigeria and he doesn’t disappoint this time around as well.

The plot is fairly simple at the same time layered as well. Halal Love Story chronicles the attempt made by a community in making a telefilm and the events that conspire around it including touching upon their religious norms and societal conventions and the discoveries that the characters themselves undergo when several times the line between reel and real starts to blur.

Both Grace Antony (Suhra) and Indrajith Sukumaran (Shereef) exhibit extraordinary acting chops as evident when they are ‘natural’ on screen and not so much when they are ‘play-acting’ in the initial portions of the telefilm they are cast for. The growing tension between the couple due to Suhra turning out to be the real talent than the I-am-born-to-act entitlement of Shereef is interesting to watch.

Soubin Shahir’s character feels redundant and could have actually been done away with. Cast any other person in his place and it really makes no difference. Same goes for Parvathy. Though she has an electrifying screen presence, her part is not sketched rather well. The actress in her makes an impact, with her ill-fitting clothes and short hair just adding to the authenticity.

Joju George has done his portion really well – he shows the pent-up anger he has and at other times, is constrained, probably having resigned to his fate. Sharaf U Dheen, whom most of us identify as the disturbing Josy in Varathan, puts up a neat performance here.

The movie employs sporadic flashes of humour, especially the scene where they begin shooting for the first time. The pace of the movie is a notch above glacial speed and this may not work for a section of the audience. Technical departments are adequate.

On the flip side, though the intent is right there, you can’t escape the feeling that something is missing, probably an emotional core that binds up the film together.

Watch the film with an open mind, on a relaxed day and it is quite capable of warming the cockles of your heart and even stir unknown emotions within.

Verdict: Halal Love Story with its subtle humour and navel gaze on societal conventions is quite the antidote for the quarantine we have been looking for.


2.75 2.75
( 2.75 / 5.0 )



Halal Love Story (aka) Halaal Love Story

Halal Love Story (aka) Halaal Love Story is a Malayalam movie. Grace Antony, Indrajith Sukumaran, Joju George, Parvathy Thiruvothu, Sharaf U Dheen, Soubin Shahir are part of the cast of Halal Love Story (aka) Halaal Love Story. The movie is directed by Zakariya Mohammed. Music is by Bijibal, Rex Vijayan, Shahabaz Aman. Production by Aashiq Abu, Amazon Prime Video, Harshad Ali, Jesna Ashim, cinematography by Ajay Menon, editing by Saiju Sreedharan.