Top 10 Patriotic Bollywood Movies of All Time

Top 10 Patriotic Bollywood Movies of All Time

You would be rather amazed to know that even a ‘B’ grade Dara Singh movie like ‘Sikander-E- Azam’ did excellent business thanks to its hit patriotic song, ‘Jahan daal daal pe sone ki chidiya…’All this proves that the sentiment of patriotism runs deep in our blood and anything that has close affinity to this emotion becomes a spontaneous crowd-puller. Here is a list of TOP 10 Patriotic Movies. Read on….

10. Karma (1986)

Subhash Ghai’s ‘Karma’ had the right amalgamation of patriotism and commercial element making it a box-office success instantly. Casting the unique paring of thespian Dilip Kumar and legendary actress Nutan for the first time on silver screen, Subhash Ghai cleverly repackaged the hit vendetta formula of ‘Sholay’ and ‘Do Aankhen Barah Haath’s brilliant idea of rehabilitation of convicts. The movie stuck gold at the box office. The movie’s patriotic number ‘Har karam apna karenge ae watan tere liye….went on to become a super hit and is till date played on national festivals.

Karma (1986)

9. Legend of Bhagat Singh (2002)

There are many films based on the life of martyr Bhagat Singh but the movie which excels all is unarguably Rajkumar Santoshi’s Ajay Devgan starrer ‘Legend of Bhagat Singh.’ In fact in the 60’s Manoj Kumar made an excellent film on the martyr in black and white called ‘Shaheed’ but Santoshi’s movie scores over Manoj Kumar’s movie in the research department. The movie’s opening scene exposing the hidden fact that Bhagat Singh and his colleagues Raj Guru and Sukhdev were hanged a day prior to their official scheduled date stunned the viewers. Also the director kept the audience to their seats by a tight screenplay and hit music. Ajay Devgan as Bhagat Singh suited to a perfect ‘T’ so were other actors. The movie won the Best Feature Hindi Film National Award and Filmfare Critic Award for Best film. If you are a lover of historical movies, then this is a ‘Must Watch’ movie for you.

Legend of Bhagat Singh (2002)

8. Border (1997)

J.P Dutta’s Border was made on the lines of Chetan Anand’s ‘Haqeeqat’ with the minor difference that the backdrop shifted from Indo –China war to Indo-Pak war that took place in 1971. The movie depicted the ‘Real Longewal episode’ where a handful of soldiers from Punjab regiment gave a tough fight to the massive strength of Pakistani soldiers and eventually won the war. The movie had a strong message condemning the futility of war through Javed Akhtar’s exceptionally thought provoking lyric that went as ‘Hum Apne Apne Kheton Mein Gehoon Ki Jagah Chaanval Ki Jagah, Ye Bandookein Kyoon Botein Hain…. Jab Dono Hi Ki Galiyon Mein, Kuch Bhooke Bachche Rotein Hain….’ The movie had an array of stars like Sunny Deol, Sunil Shetty, Akshaye Khanna, Jackie Shroff, Tabu, Pooja Bhatt etc. If you have still not seen the movie then you must watch the movie as it is both entertaining and intelligent.

Border (1997)

7. Purab Aur Paschim (1970)

After the amazing success of ‘Upkaar’, Manoj Kumar repeated his hit formula of patriotism in ‘Purab Aur Paschim’. Christened yet again as Bharat, in this movie Manoj Kumar focused on the declining Indian cultural and traditional values in the young Indians residing in foreign countries. Saira Banu played the role of an Indian origin brought up in London. She is a complete westernized lady, who wears mini skits, smokes, drinks and lives a life of liberty. She is totally unaware of Indian culture. Likewise other young Indians too are ignorant about Indian ethnicity. On the other hand the elder Indians remorse their Indian roots and lament how their children are being drawn away from their culture. The movie had some incredible patriotic songs like ‘Hai preet jahan ki reet sada…’,  ‘Dulhan chali, haan pahen chali, teen rang ki choli…’If you have not watched this movie, then do watch for its excellent nationalistic songs and thought provoking message.

Purab Aur Paschim (1970)

6. Leader (1964)

This Dilip Kumar starrer is perhaps Hindi cinema’s first movie that exposed the political leaders who like white ants decay our nation. Though the subject was way ahead of its time hence the movie did not fare well at the box office. However the movie’s patriotic songs ‘Apni Azadi Ko Hum…’ is still a hot favorite at all national events. Based on the theme of a socially active Law student who exposes corrupt leaders in his newspaper, the story takes an interesting twist when the innocent hero is trapped in the murder of nation’s populist leader.You would be surprised to know the ‘unique’ script was not penned by a professional story writer but it was written by Dilip Kumar himself. The movie was lavishly mounted with advance technologies like Technicolor and Cinemascope. Buy a DVD and watch the movie you would surely love it not only for excellent script but super hits songs by Naushad.

Leader (1964)

5. Garam Hawa (1973)

M.S. Sathu’s Garam Hawa is an offbeat patriotic movie. Unlike the main stream patriotic movies that focused on freedom movement or freedom fighters, Garam Hawa depicted the anguish and trauma of patriotic Indian Muslims post partition.  The movie exposed the true colors of politicians who urged the Indian Muslims to stay in India but they themselves migrated to Pakistan! The movie brilliantly displayed how the Indian Muslims who choose to stay behind underwent tribulation and humiliation and were compelled to migrate. Balraj Sahani, who played the central character, gave a heart-rending performance. The movie gave a strong message to the Indian Muslims to become a part of Indian politics and fight for their rights, instead of migrating to Pakistan.If you have not seen the movie then it is a ‘must watch’ for lovers of realistic cinema.

Garam Hawa (1973)

4. Lagaan (2001)

Aamir Khan’s Lagaan comes at number three position for its unusual script and apt direction. The movie excellently portrayed the pitiable plight of Indian farmers at the time of British colonialism in India. The movie won the Oscar nomination and even escalated into the Best five Foreign Film categories but tragically lost out to the Bosnia film, ‘No Man’s Land’Based on a wafer thin plot where a group of villagers fight out a cricket match against the English team to get their three years ‘lagaan’ waived off, filmmaker Ashutosh Gowariker deserves kudos for weaving a brilliant screenplay that keeps the viewers at the edge of their seats for a marathon four hours!  The highpoint of the movie is A.R Rehman’s superb music. Remember ‘O Mitwa, Sun Mitwa, Tujhko Kya Darr Hai Re….’If you have not seen the movie, then you should watch because despite tackling a sensitive issue the movie has great entertaining value. The movie was a super hit and a biggest grosser at box office.

Lagaan (2001)

3. Upkaar (1967)

Manoj Kumar’s ‘Upkaar’ ranks second in this list as the movie not only established Manoj Kumar as Mr. Bharat but outstandingly brought home the message of  ‘Jai Jawan, Jai Kisan’, the slogan coined by the then Prime Minster of India, Lal Bahadur Shastri, to defend the border and give boost to agriculture. The movie injected fire in the farmers to increase production and stimulated the youth of the country to join army. Manoj Kumar beautifully crafted the script by portraying Kisan in the first half and turning Jawan in the second half, when the nation calls the youth to join army during war. The movie has the famous ‘Mere Desh Ki Dharti…’ The highlight of the movie was actor Pran’s performance as ‘Malang Baba’ who took a transition from villain to character role from this movie. The movie won the Best film Filmfare award. If you have not watched the movie, then watch it for its exceptional cinematography, color and of course, its patriotic appeal.

Upkaar (1967)

2. Haqeeqat (1964)

This Chetan Anand movie tops the rank of patriotic movies simply because as the movie’s title suggests the movie depicted the naked truth about the Indo- China war. The movie exposed the hypocrisy of China who on the face of India pledged friendship and sang slogans of ‘Chini Hindi bhai bhai’ but in 1962 back-stabbed  us by attacking our country. India was not equipped with arms and ammunition hence was left stranded and had to retreat. The other novelty of the movie is that it is the first movie to portray the ordeals and sufferings of the soldier’s family and his beloved. Balraj Sahani gave a soul stirring performance. But it was Madan Mohan’s heart rendering songs that makes the movie all time favorite. Remember ‘Main Ye Sochkar Uske Dar Se Uthaa…’ or  ‘Zaraa See Aahat Hotee Hai To Dil Sochtaa Hai…’ and of course the most popular patriotic songs till date ‘Kar Chale Hum Fida, Jaano Tan Saathiyon…’You would be more surprised to know that this was the first film to be financially aided by Government of India and was shot on actual locations of Ladhak.  If you have not seen the movie, then do watch.

Haqeeqat (1964)

1. Aye mere watan ke logon

When Lata echoed this kavi Pradeep written composition it had such a mesmerizing impact on the then Prime Minister Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru that he burst into tears. Similarly the other most famous patriotic number ‘Saare jahan se accha…’written by Iqbal won the masses’ hearts so dearly that it was included in the 50’s movie ‘Masoom’ and as expected pulled in audience, despite being handicapped of big stars. In fact, the magic of patriotism is so strong that Manoj Kumar, better known as Mr. Bharat gave a series of super hit movies banking on the subject of patriotism.

Aye mere watan ke logon


The other major attraction of the movie was the clashing of titans Dilip Kumar and Naseeruddin Shah for the first time. If you have a taste for watching great performances, then do watch the movie.Thus you see the allure of patriotic movies is such that they pierce our heart like a bullet and stimulate our patriotism. Though today we may lack film makers like Chetan Anand, yet the industry possess some brilliant filmmakers, who have proved their worth whenever given opportunity.


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