Every Independence day we go back to the songs and movies which bring back patriotism in us. These are the things which help us in reliving those moments and personalities which helped to shape the independent India as we know it today.
Hence on the occasion of India’s 70th Independence day, we bring you the top patriotic movies which you can watch today, in no particular order:
Purab Aur Paschim(1970)
No film captured the imagination of Indian youth like Rang De Basanti. This was the film which gave the people idea of silent marches and candle light protests. Based on the crashing of MIG 21’s
across country mixed with the idea of Bhagat Singh’s ideology with current youth and A.R Rehman’s heart pounding soundtrack, Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra made a unique film which resonated with the Indian audience. Later on, protest for Jessica Lal and many other cases were carried out in the fashion similar to the one shown in the movie. Mehra originally wanted to make a biopic on Bhagat Singh but when he found out that almost half a dozen movies are already in progress, he changed the story. Nonetheless, RDB was a big hit across the country. Personal confession: I watched RDB 18 times after giving my 12th exams.
Being one of the few movies nominated for the prestigious Oscar’s obviously makes a point on the quality of the movie. Based on a fictional story of a group of the villager’s going up against an arrogant officer when he challenges them for a Cricket match. Lagaan was a huge success with critics as well as audiences and cemented Ashutosh Govarikar as the director to watch out. It also gave Amir Khan a much-needed success after the mega failure of Mela(1998).
With A.R Rehman’s beautiful soundtrack capturing the essence of Indian villages, the movie went on to get nominated for Oscar’s. In 2010, Empire magazines ranked Lagaan 55th in its list of “The 100 Best Films of World Cinema”.
In 2011, it was listed among Time magazine’s “The All-TIME 25 Best Sports Movies”.
Trivia: Amir Khan reportedly took 1.5 years to do the movie. When Ashutosh initially approached him, Amir told him to make modification in the script and agreed to do the movie after reading the modified script.
If you really want to know who Bhagat Singh was and how he developed his ideology at such an early age, you have to watch this movie. The opening scene of the movie itself will bring you to tears and the rest of the movie just makes you wonder who this man was. The movie was a critical success and went onto win 2 National awards for Best Actor and Best Direction but was a flop at the box office as two more movies on the same subject were released on the same day as Legend of Bhagat Singh. But that did not matter when the content of the movie was so good and later on it became one of the best materials available on Bhagat Singh. You don’t have to go through any history books if you can watch this movie.
Music again by the maestro A.R.Rehman perfectly captures the feel of pre-independence India.
Sadly there are very few movies made on the subject of war in Bollywood but Border is one of the very few great war movies made in India. Based on the real life Battle of Longewala during the Indo-Pakistani War of 1971, Border was a huge box office and critical success
and its soundtrack composed by Anu Malik(surprise) became the anthem for Indian soldiers fighting at the border. It went onto win 3 National awards and 4 Filmfare awards. Sadly movie’s name is also associated with the fire at Uphaar cinema.
Essentially a sports drama, Chak De is credited with creating a “Chak De Effect” for hockey in India. The title song of the movie is now played at the stadiums and across news channels whenever Indian wins a match. The film went onto win National Film Award for best popular film along with
5 Filmfare Awards.
Starring Balraj Sahni in the lead and written by Kaifi Azmi, Garam Hawa is a landmark film which deals with the troubles of a Muslim Family during the period of post partition of India in 1947. Along with Shyam Benegal’s Ankur(1973), the film is credited with starting the new wave of Parallel or Art cinema in India. It went onto win National Award, 3 Filmfare Awards and was nominated for the Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival.
Based on the Ruskin Bond’s fictional novel “A Flight of Pigeons”, the movie is set around the Indian Rebellion of 1857 and stars Shashi Kapoor and Naseeruddin Shah in lead roles and was directed by Shyam Benegal.
The movie went onto win 3 National Film Awards as well as 6 Filmfare Awards.
The first of the movies based on Bhagat Singh’s life and Indian Independence movement, the film stars Manoj “Bharat” Kumar in the titular role along with Pran and Prem Chopra in pivotal roles. The film was a critical and box office success and became first of the patriotic movies made by Manoj Kumar. It went onto win 3 National Film awards. Its soundtrack is still played across the country on Independence and Republic days.
The film which will make you uncomfortable deals with the lives of four soldiers incarcerated in the infamous Kalapani jail in Andaman and Nicobar Islands during the British Raj in India. It is considered as one of the landmark films in Malayalam cinema.
The acting is top-notch here, especially by sadistic Amrish Puri. The film grabbed 3 National Awards.
The film is set during post-independence India and focuses on the lives tonga wallahs. The film is remembered for its iconic race scene between Dilip Kumar with a Tonga and the bus. The film’s soundtrack composed by legendary O.P Nayyar is still remembered for its soulful tracks
such as “Uden Jab Jab”, “Yeh Desh Hai Veer” and “Saathi Haath Badhana”.
The film is based on the Chittagong Uprising against British rule in 1930. Starring Abhishek Bachchan and Deepika Padukone in lead roles, despite garnering positive review the film failed to generate money at the Box Office and was considered a disaster.
Nevertheless, it’s a good movie and should be given second chance.
A coming of age story of a spoiled rich kid, the film tells the story of Karan Gill who develops from a target less man into a determined army officer. Hrithik’s performance is widely appreciated however the movie was a failure at the box office. Later on due to repeated showing on TV it has generated a cult following and is considered a great film.
Ashutosh Gowarikar’s next movie right after Lagaan, Swades was a failure at the box office and gained a cult following later on, but it is also his most personal film. With a soulful track by A.R Rehman, it will make you quit your day jobs and start doing something for your country.
Backed by the amazing chemistry between Shahrukh Khan and debutante Gayatri Joshi (who did only 1 movie and nothing after that….strange). The film won 2 National Awards along with 3 Filmfare Awards.
Anand Math is set in the events of the Sannyasi Rebellion, which took place in the late 18th century in Bengal.
Starring Prithviraj Kapoor, Bharat Bhushan, Geeta Bali, and Ajit in the lead roles it was based on the famous Bengali novel of the same name written by Bankim Chandra Chatterjee in 1882.
The movie directed by Chetan Anand and starring Balraj Sahni and Dharmendra in the lead roles was based on the 1962 Sino-Indian War. The movie won National Film Award for Second Best Feature Film in 1965. Its song “Kar Chale, Hum Fidaa, jaan-o-tan” sung by Mohammed Rafi is still being remembered for its patriotic tone and heart touching lyrics.
Another great movie by Bharat Kumar, Purab Aur Paschim is based on the NRI’s living abroad ashamed of their desi routes. The movie was Manoj Kumar’s fourth film on Patriotism and cemented his status as Bharat Kumar in Indian cinema. Its song “Bharat Ka Rehnewaala” is one of the best songs ever about the values and traditions of India.
The debut movie from John Matthew Matthan; starring Aamir Khan, Naseeruddin Shah, Sonali Bendre in the leading roles has me pumped up every time I watch it on TV. The film deals with an honest IPS officer’s quest to stop cross border terrorism at all cost.
The film was a critical and commercial success and went onto win National Award as well as 4 Filmfare awards.
One of the very few Indian Spy thrillers made in Bollywood, 16th December was a moderate box office success and was a high critical success. Directed by debutante Mani Shankar and starring Danny Denzongpa, Milind Soman, Dipannita Sharma and Sushant Singh,
its name is derived from the date of Pakistani surrender to the Indian Army.
Neeraj Pandey in his debut movie checked all the right boxes while making this high octane thriller starring Anupam Kher and Naseeruddin Shah in leading roles. Set against the backdrop of a common man suffering from terrorism, it spawned numerous remakes the notable one being a Hollywood one
starring Sir Ben Kingsley. It was a sleeper hit mostly due to the overwhelming positive word of mouth.
Starring Manoj Bajpai in the leading role based on a true story of prisoners of war after the Indo-Pak war of 1971. It tells the story of six soldiers of Indian Army taken as POW who escapes the Pakistani Army. It went on to win National Film Award for best feature film in Hindi.