Top 10 Bollywood Movies of All Time

Top 10 Bollywood Movies of All Time

Many people, in today’s day & age, remember the things that the British left for us. In a manner of speaking, the British paved the way for advancements in the fields of transport (Railways, Airplanes & Cars), religious justice (banning practices like Sati & Child Marriage), administration etc.

But, most people ignore the biggest contribution that they made to the Indian common man. The two major gifts the British bestowed upon the Indians are, without doubt, Cricket & Cinema.

Over the years, India has made over two hundred thousand (two lakh) movies. So, you can understand the magnitude of the task at hand…

I understand and realize that every individual’s choice is different. Movies that I like may not be liked by you. There is going to be, as always, a lot of controversy over my selection & that is why, trying to stay as neutral and unbiased as possible, I came up with a fair system of judgment for these movies…

The movies will be rated on a scale of 1 to 10 in 5 fields. Top 10 Bollywood Movies with the highest scores (out of 50) will win…
With this approach, I should be able to keep my differences aside. So, here we go:

1) Sholay (47)

The story of Gabbar, Jai & Veeru is implanted into the minds of the Indian public. I don’t need to emphasize the importance of this film in shaping the future of Indian Film Industry. This movie set the tone of an era of action films to follow. The bond of friendship depicted between Jai and Veeru, so well established in this three hour epic, is still used as a cornerstone for movies today! India’s biggest hit by far, it propelled Amitabh Bachchan to superstardom & landed him an award for actor of the millennium too!
Message: 8; Box-office: 10; Appeal Across Generations: 10; Cult Following: 10; Acting: 9

Watch full movie online here

Top 10 Bollywood Movies of All Time2) Anand (46)
The Oscar Academy, while adding Anand to their library, admitted that if such a movie would have been made by an American, they probably wouldn’t have nominated any other movie (or actor) for the ‘Best Movie’ & ‘Best Actor in a Lead Role’ Oscars!
The story of Anand, a man troubled by lympho-sarcoma of the intestine (an incurable disease till date), leads him to touch the lives of the strangers that he spends his last few days with such immaculate profoundness that you can’t help but feel sad for the character that Rajesh Khanna brought to life. Anyone who has ever seen this movie would subscribe to the fact that this was one of the most emotionally exhilarating experiences of their lives. It’s a true masterpiece!
Message: 10; Box-office: 9; Appeal Across Generations: 8; Cult Following: 9; Acting: 10
Watch full movie online here

Top 10 Bollywood Movies of All Time3) Mughal-e-azam (45)

Those who hadn’t seen Mughal-e-azam, for the insane reason that it was made in black & white, got their wish fulfilled when it was re-coloured and re-released a few years ago. The semi-fictional story follows the events & happenings of the Royal Mughal household. Prince Jehangir’s (Dilip Kumar) struggle with his father, the Mughal Emperor Akbar (played by legendary actor Prithviraj Kapoor) over his love with a courtesan by the name of Anarkali (played by the beautiful Madhubala) takes centre stage.
Who doesn’t remember the mildly veiled rebellious undertones of the mockery Anarkali makes of Akbar while waltzing to the tune of ‘Ab Pyar Kiya Toh Darna Kya’? It is the sheer intensity of your connection with Anarkali & the magnificence of the Mughal Royal scene that draws you in & no matter how strong you may be, your eyes do tear up when Anarkali is being buried in a wall at the very end. The value of the rebellion of a mere courtesan against the Indian Supreme is not lost in the movie’s message!
Message: 9; Box-office: 9; Appeal Across Generations: 7; Cult Following: 10; Acting: 10
Watch full movie online here

4) Swades (44)
The plot of a story is usually the critical factor in its appeal or its success. The true persona of a movie, however, is revealed in the simplicity of the story telling. If a viewer can guess the story and the inherent plots and sub-plots of a movie, the movie is as good as dead for him, or so people thought until Ashutosh Gowariker came along with this magnum opus.
Everyone knew from the very start what direction Mohan Bhargava’s story would take but it was the journey that made this movie stand out. You feel at one with him, you feel as if it’s you, not Shah Rukh, who is going through the emotional turmoil of having to choose between Gita & Kaveri Amma in India or his job & life in America.
The rustic feel of the typical Indian village, the beautifully crafted songs, all entice and wrap you around in this journey of massive emotional proportions. This is my personal favourite movie of all time.
Message: 10; Box-office: 6; Appeal Across Generations: 10; Cult Following: 8; Acting: 10
Watch full movie online here
Top 10 Bollywood Movies of All Time5) Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jaayenge (43)
DDLJ is the platform that launched Shah Rukh Khan as a national superstar. His pairing with Kajol is considered to be one of the most romantic, most profitable unions in Hindi Cinema history.
The target audiences of this movie were NRIs & PIOs. The flourishing dahlias and blossoming brooks were a welcome change from the run-of-the-mill love stories that were in production back then. It was, at that time, Yash Chopra’s biggest hit. He had given to the industry a new lead actor & simultaneously managed to launch his own son, Aditya Chopra!
It is a little known fact that Shah Rukh Khan had turned down this movie, initially, as he didn’t think the audience would accept him in a positive role (he had been established as a baddy in films like Darr & Baazigar). But later, as we all have come to know, Yash Chopra (who had also directed SRK in Baazigar) convinced Shah Rukh to take a leap of faith which reaped rich rewards for him.
Message: 7; Box-office: 9; Appeal Across Generations: 9; Cult Following: 10; Acting: 8
Watch full movie online here
6) Hum Aapke Hain Kaun (42)
The birth of Prem took place in a movie called Maine Pyar Kiya, but, Salman Khan came into his own when he played Prem in this marathon movie. A docile Madhuri Dixit lent her acting prowess to the character of Nisha, in which she looked her dazzling best. The on-screen chemistry between the two future-stalwarts was awe-inspiring.
The ideal son, the selfless brother, the heart wrenching storyline, all lend credence to this being one of the best movies ever made in Indian cinema.
Message: 7; Box-office: 10; Appeal Across Generations: 9; Cult Following: 9; Acting: 7
Watch full movie online here
6) Lagaan(42)
Patriotic cinema has always done really well in India. This was a one-of-a-kind attempt at making a fictional patriotic period movie!
The risk involved was huge & everything about this movie screamed out saying that this movie was destined to be a flop. It was over three & a half hours long with village settings & an uncharacteristic nonchalance about it. It was to everyone’s surprise that it opened to such rave reviews & eventually made its way to the Oscars.
The film inculcated within us the feeling of being Indian & on a personal note, I remember coming out of the theater on the eve of watching this movie feeling like the most Indian man there ever was.
Message: 8; Box-office: 10; Appeal Across Generations: 7; Cult Following: 8; Acting: 9
Watch Full movie online here
Top 10 Bollywood Movies of All Time8) Chhoti Si Baat (39)
Amol Palekar’s uncommon comic talent for playing mousy characters & Ashok Kumar’s flamboyance as Gen Julius Wilfred Nagendranath Singh is still stuck in the mind of the audience who managed to catch that movie. The victory of the underdog against all odds is a theme that has a universal appeal & yet such few movies were made on this topic, back in the day.
The narration of Palekar’s situation, his sudden character upheaval to trounce a puzzled Asrani, all the while managing to win the coy Vidya Sinha’s heart, all seemed to be in tune with the central theme of the movie.
Being an offbeat movie, though, did have its own set of drawbacks. This movie never really came into the limelight until the movie made its way into the homes of audience via the small screen, where it was duly appreciated.
Message: 8; Box-office: 8; Appeal Across Generations: 7; Cult Following: 7; Acting: 9
Watch full movie online here
Top 10 Bollywood Movies of All Time9) Mother India (39)
Mother India is a classic example of a movie made to depict the power of the Indian woman! It was one of the first movies to be made on this theme & inspired a slew of movies that tried to copy the directorial & acting genius portrayed in these movies.
Nargis Dutt is a name synonymous with acting brilliance today. This was the movie that brought out her raw acting talent into the world’s eyes. Incidentally, this was also the movie that united Nargis with a certain Sunial Dutt, a union that led to the birth of one of the long standing warriors of Indian Cinema, Sanjay Dutt!
Message: 10; Box-office: 7; Appeal Across Generations: 6; Cult Following: 7; Acting: 9
Watch full movie online here
Top 10 Bollywood Movies of All Time10) Andaaz Apna Apna (38)
I think it is safe to assume that anyone and everyone who has ever seen Andaaz Apna Apna has been rolling on the floor laughing. Why this film bombed at the box-office at a time when comedies, let alone of this level, were hard to come by amazes me till date.
The best part about a comedy is the fact that it has great repeat value. This piece of comic genius, though, is so outrageously hilarious that you just don’t want the scenes to end. Several characters like Crime-master Gogo, Teja & Robot are still deeply imprinted in the audience’s mind. Dialogues like ‘Aankhen nikal ke gotiya khelunga’ & ‘Jhakaas’ are also modes of wholesome entertainment.
Message: 5; Box-office: 6; Appeal Across Generations: 10; Cult Following: 8; Acting: 9
Watch full movie online here
Special mention (Movies that just missed the cut): Kaun, Deewar, Taare Zameen Par, Chak De India, Purab Aur Paschim, Guide, The Legend of Bhagat Singh (this is the one with Ajay Devgan in it).
Hope you liked my selection. I know that there are going to be a lot of debates & criticism of the choices and I welcome all of your inputs. All I can say is I have been as unbiased and true to the task, as I possibly could be…

Ankit Yaduvanshi

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  1. abhi says:

    Where is Golmaal yaar????

    1. ankit says:

      i really hope u mean the old golmaal and not ajay devgan and i think amol palekar’s acting prowess is more visible in chhoti si baat, i hope u undertsand…

    2. nabil says:

      1.DDLJ.2.sholay.3.lagaan.4.3 idiots.5.deewar.6.agnipath(amitab).7.baazighar.8.pardes.9,devdas(dilip kumar,srk).10.mughaleazam.

  2. Arjun says:

    i beg to differ! Swades was hopeless!

    1. ankit says:

      please differ but i really think not many would agree with u…

    2. anubha says:


  3. Sajal says:

    Little surprised to see DDLJ and to some extent HAHK there, but rest of it seems more or less fine….

    A few mentions from my side: A Wednesday, Lakshya, Udaan…..

    1. ankit says:

      sajal, although i really like HAHK, i wouldn’t put it in my top 10, i judged on many criterion to be as impartial as i cud be…

      as for lakshya, wednesday and udaan, they wud loose out in appeal, cult and the box office sections… :(

      again, this is what i think are india’s best films…not my personal favourites…

      hope that was a good enuff explanation

      1. Sajal says:

        oh yes, it was!!! :D

    2. anubha says:

      :O DDLJ was an amazing movie!!!

  4. Jaskirat Singh says:

    hey dude…
    i m surprised that there’s no mention of the
    best comedy ever” Chupke chupke” starring Dharmendra, Amitabh, Sharmila Tagore, Jaya Bachan etc.

    1. ankit says:

      that was really nice too, but have u seen chhoti si baat???

  5. anubha says:

    this review pattern is very subjective…

    1. ankit says:

      what does that mean?

  6. fallen angel says:

    Lovely.. i watched most of them..

    1. Ankit Yaduvanshi says:

      so u like the selection?

  7. Deepanshu says:

    DDLJ……i think it shud be in top 3 :roll:

  8. beautyful says:

    Where’s Dhoom 2, Devdas, Jodha Akbaar,Robot? So many movies are missing.

  9. chirag says:

    Where is Pyaasa? Where is Guide? A list of top 10 isn’t enough and possible really… You have to be more critical and look less at the box office results if you are judging by the filmmaking/quality standards….Weren’t Hazaaron Kwaishein Aisi and Black Friday gems even if they failed to rock the box office? On the list, I only agree with Sholay (For the power it generated in Hindi cinema and the uniqueness of that era), Lagaan, Mother India, Andaaz Apna Apna and Moghul-E-Azam. My list of best hindi films in terms of STORY TELLING and QUALITY IN FILM MAKING (fuck the box office) would be(In no particular order):

    -Hazaaron Kwaishein Aisi
    -Black Friday
    -Mother India
    -Andaaz Apna Apna
    -Taare Zameen Par
    -Love, Sex, Dokha

    1. anwesha says:

      well, if you can put Love Sex and Dhoka in the list, i really cant trust your judgement!!!

    2. PRASHANT says:

      i think u r not able to judge the right bunches of movies so suprised u post L.S.D tune isme kya dekh liya yaar

  10. asha says:

    ram gopal varma ki aag
    chandini chowk to china
    rab ne banadi jodi
    mangal pandey
    my name is khan

    last but not the least
    golamal series(very very exiting) golmal 1 hahhaha golmal 2 bhuhahahahah golmal 3 bhuhahahahahhahahahhahahahhahahahhahahahahahahahahahhahahahahahahahhaha

    hoh ho ho i cant control killing thriller i think u dont stop we need golamal 100 and 1000s
    NB:arent u ashamed

    1. PRASHANT says:


  11. Nilesh says:

    I think there are a few other movies in addition to the above list which are not worth giving a miss:

    1. Sadma
    2. Pushpak
    3. Taare Zameen Par
    4. Rang De Basanti
    5. 3 Idiots
    6. Deewangi
    7. Chak De India
    8. Hera Pheri
    9. Lage Raho Munnabhai
    10. Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam
    11. Sarfarosh
    12. Wednesday

  12. aishwarya says:

    2.Kuch Kuch Hota Hai
    4.Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham
    5.Hum aapke he kaun
    7.My Name Is Khan
    10.Om Shanthi Om

  13. luehj says:

    DDJ &andaz apna apna in top ten you must be joking!!!!!!!!!

  14. Ananya says:

    Good list. But no list can be complete without Pyaasa and Guide. Mother India should be out probably, and Chhoti si baat although good, not a cult classic. top 4 definitely Anand, Guide, Pyaasa and Dil Chahta Hai. Yes, you missed out DCH…

  15. DR.RAHUL says:

    i think alltime best bollywood movies are
    4.mother india
    6.naya daur
    7.dilwale dulhania le jayenge
    8.rang de basanti/lage raho munna bhai
    9.jaane bhi do yaaro
    10.masoom(old)/taare zameen par

  16. Aryan says:

    Where is Rang De Basanti in this list. without this film the list is incomplete man…..

  17. viky says:

    where is gajni,dabbang,wanted,singham

  18. anonymous says:

    there is a poster of movie:- “Pardes” but no description abt it.. was it mistakenly included instead of Swades’s poster?

    1. anwesha says:

      hey i guess so. sorry for the mix up. and thanks for pointing that out!

      1. anwesha says:

        has been corrected!

  19. Baikunta says:

    My List as Follows:—-

    1)Do Aankhen Barah Haath – 1957
    2)Pyaasa – 1957
    3)Lagaan – 2001
    4)Mr. and Mrs. Iyer – 2002
    5)Satya – 1998
    6)Jagte Raho – 1956
    7)Do Bigha Zamin – 1953
    8)A Wednesday – 2008
    9)Nishant – 1975
    10)Swades – 2004
    11)Sparsh – 1980
    12)Gulaal – 2009
    13)Mughal-e-Azam – 1960
    14)Rang De Basanti – 2006
    15)Zakhm – 1998

    1. anwesha says:

      A really choice list I must say!

  20. Shadab says:

    1- DDLJ
    2- Sholey
    3- Mughal-e Azam
    4- Mother India
    5- Chak De India
    6- Rang de Basanti
    7- My name is Khan
    8- 3 Idiot
    9- Veer Zara
    10- Devdas

    1. sid says:

      amitabh bachan all movies are cult classic, before 1991. Srk salman amir are good but not include their movies as cult classic.

  21. naveen says:

    1- Sholay
    2- DDLJ
    3- Rang de basanti
    4- Ghayal
    5- Chupke-Chupke
    6- Janebhi do yaaro
    7- Khamosh(1985)– Watch it first
    9- Mother India
    10- Mughal-e-ajam

  22. vijendra sinha says:

    My list would be
    1. Sholay
    2. Mother India
    3. Anand
    5. Pyaasa
    6. Guide
    7. Rang de basanti
    8. ddlj
    9. Jaane bhi do yaaron
    10. do ankhein baarah haath

  23. pragati says:

    yaar plz add

    umrao jaan

    it’s a beautiful adaptation…….

  24. Hemant Joshi says:

    1. Sholay
    2. Mother India
    3. Anand
    4. Mughal-e-azam
    5. Pyaasa
    6. Guide
    7. Chupke-Chupke
    8. Jagte Raho
    9. Jungley
    10. Do ankhein baarah haath

  25. rauf says:

    whr is 3 idiots man the best movie ever

  26. Ankur says:

    I am going 2 destroy your website, if you donot select KUCH KUCH HOTA HAI on the top of the list….

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  28. Sharman says:

    Terrific work! That is the kind of information that are supposed to be shared across the web. Disgrace on Google for no longer positioning this put up upper! Come on over and talk over with my site . Thank you =)

  29. The Right Time To Strike says:

    WoW you guys are all RETARDS….. Seriously, no DEEWAR ??? REALLY ??? Are you guys even Indian ???

    Fuckin’ retards !!!!

    1. anwesha says:

      whoaa!! hold on! The list is simply the author’s choice buddy! You a fan of deewar? You are most welcome to tell readers about it. WHy not submit a post on it?

  30. Sachin says:

    Love BLACK FRIDAY you must include it if you don’t add black Friday ,you have no knowledge of movies ;
    My List
    2:Dama Dum
    4:chatur singh
    5:RA one
    These All are great movies Must be nominated for Oscars

  31. sandeep says:


  32. dheeraj says:

    satya the movie that changed path of gangster movies is a must in all time 10 indian movies

  33. saurabh says:

    here the top 10 bollyywood movies:
    1) Sholay
    2) Don(1978)
    3) Deewar
    4) mughal-e-azam
    5) guide
    6) motherindia
    7) agneepath(2012)
    8) 3 idiots
    9) kuch kuch hota hai
    10) zanzeer(1973)

  34. Anwesha Bose says:

    sholay seems to be everyone’s favorite! :)

  35. Sandeep says:

    Top 3 Action Movies :-
    1) Sholay
    2) Agneepath (amitabh)
    3) Dabangg

    Top 3 Romantic Movies:-
    1) Maine Pyar Kiya
    2) DDLJ
    3) Hum Apke Hain kaun

    Top 3 Comedy Movies:-
    1) Andaz Apna Apna
    2) Chupke Chupke ( amitabh n dharmendr)
    3) Golmaal

  36. the great kishore says:

    all time best- 1. anand1971(rajesh ‘kaka’ khanaa always made me cry), 2. andaz apna apna 1994(the way aamir acted in this movie nobody can’t whether it’s jim carrey,steve martin or amitabh) 3. sholay 1975(for it’s legacy) 4. do aankhein baarah haath 1958 (classic, great,ahead of its time) 5. roti 1974 (manmohan desai’s best work, kader sahaab’s great dialogues and kaka’s great acting) 6. hera pheri 2000(best ever after andaz apna apna) 7. mother india 1957(no need to say anything) 8. guide 1965(greatest musical) 9. golmaal 1979 and chupke-chupke 1975 (hrishikesh mukherjee was brilliant) 10. safar 1970( an asit sen classic) and naukri 1978 ( a very very underrated movie and a must watch)

    honorable mentions- hum aapke hai kaun, mughal-e-azam, jo jeeta wohi sikandar,
    choti si baat, zameer1975 (underrated),saudagaar 1972, waqt 1965, jab jab phool khile 1965, teesri mazil 1966, virast, sahib 1985, nayak yaadon ki baraat, tere ghar ke saamne, a wednesday, aradhna, padosan,vaastav

  37. the great kishore says:

    and yes would like to add namkeen 1982( for me the most underrated bollywood movie and one of the best ever made and a must watch for sanjeev kumar ji fans) mere apne 1971 and mausam 1975

  38. Deepu says:

    swades is one of my favorite that film start to end,then take comment

  39. subham narayn says:

    hey are you idiot???you have no brain???? you just can’t choice. where is gangs of wasseypur 1 & 2 ? donkey!

    1. Anwesha Bose says:

      Pls note the date of the article. It has been written before gangs of wasseypur movies release :p

  40. Biju says:

    I want dharam veer in the list

  41. Prasenjit says:

    I think, Masoom, Deewar & 3 Idiots should have a place in top 10.

    1. Anwesha Bose says:

      Movies of that era (masoom and deewar) were simply golden. They cannot be compared with others. :)

  42. Abdul Matheen says:

    DDLJ…. our favorite movie

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