The growth of OTT platforms has sure brought movies to our fingertips and therefore watching these age-old classics is so much easier than ever. Telugu movies from the 80’s, 90’s and early 2000’s have been a major influence on directors. From great storylines to background music they paved the way for today’s movies. Keeping the same in mind, the below-listed movies are a few classics which may have been released even before you were born but are a must-watch. From Gundamma Katha to Vedam, these movies are just our favourite picks of the 10 Telugu movies you must watch before you die. As these movies do not have pre-cut trailers, here are links to some famous songs and scenes.
Scroll down to explore the list of classic Telugu movies one must watch.
This 1962 drama-comedy has a special place in the hearts of the Telugu audience. Directed by Kamalakara Kameswara Rao, this epic stars the famous Savitri, Senior NTR and Akkineni Nageswara Rao, and Suryakantham as Gundamma, in lead roles. The story is about Gundamma, who mistreats her stepdaughter and how her two sons try to teach her a lesson in return. Apt for the time frame it was released, the social message through this movie was subtly conveyed through comedy. Watch this black and white movie for a glimpse into the era. The movie is available on YouTube.
#9 Sagara Sangamam
Directed by K Viswanath, this movie made sensational headlines with Kamal Hassan’s mind-blowing performance. Portraying the character of Balakrishna in the movie, he is a trained Kuchipudi dancer who gets an opportunity to compete in a classical dance festival. Two days prior to his performance, his mother passes away leaving him devastated. The emotions of loss are perfected by the versatile actor who needs no introduction. Don’t miss watching his spectacular performance on Amazon Prime Video.
The train scene is the only introduction this movie needs. The most loved love story of all time, Geethanjali is directed by Mani Ratnam. Prakash who is diagnosed with cancer meets Geethanjali also a terminally ill patient and the two fall in love. After a lot of ups and downs, the two reunite in the iconic railway station scene in the climax of the movie. Watch this one of a kind love story that will encapsulate the essence of the late 80s for you. Watch this Nagarjuna starrer on Voot.
Yet another Nagarjuna starrer, directed by Ram Gopal Varma, this 1989 movie made it big at the then box office. A story that revolves around a college student and how corruption misleads the lot, Shiva and his friends decide to take a stand to change the status quo. The action-drama stars Amala Akkineni, wife of Nagarjuna in the lead female role. Its success made it a pan India movie after it was dubbed into the Hindi language in 1990. Watch the movie on Amazon Prime Video.
#6 Kshana Kshanam
Directed by Ram Gopal Varma in 1991, this thriller film stars the heartthrob of India, Late Sridevi alongside the most loved actor in the Telugu film industry, Venkatesh. Telling the story from a female perspective, the director braved the norms of the then society. The lead actress Sridevi and Ram Gopal Varma both received Nandi awards for the movie under the categories Best Actress and Best Director respectively. The plot revolves around a young woman who is attacked by a gang of robbers. A pickpocketer helps her escape into the forests. Watch the movie on Amazon Prime Video.
The 2003 thriller movie directed by Chandra Sekhar Yeleti is driven by its storyline. Starring debutants Sindhu Tolani, Shashank, Harsha Vardhan, Mohit Chadda and others in lead roles, Pavan Malhotra plays a vital role in the film. From Nandi awards to National awards, this film was well appreciated across the country. It was also remade in Tamil and Malayalam and dubbed in Hindi. The story is about a gangster who hijacks a plane, using four men with no previous records to carry out the operations. Watch the movie on Amazon Prime Video.
#4 Aa Naluguru
The inspiring story of a man who puts his moral values above everything else takes a drastic step to provide for the demand of his children. The arrogant attitude of children towards their parents is what the director tries to show in this movie. Directed by Chandra Siddhartha, the movie’s cast includes Rajendra Prasad, Aamani, Raja Abel, and others in prominent roles. The movie is available on Jio Cinema.
A love story which touched the hearts of many back in the early 2000s still continues to carry its charm today. Directed by Sekhar Kammula, a man known to make close to life stories, even perfect the music of the film with KM Radha Krishnan. The story is about the journey of a young man getting over his failed engagement and a young girl set out on an adventure on her own. The two meet over the cruise on Godavari and fall in love. The lead roles are played by Kamalini Mukherjee and Sumanth. Watch the movie on Zee5.
#2 Anukokunda Oka Roju
Another movie directed by Chandra Sekhar Yeleti makes it to our list of 10 must-watch Telugu movies before you die. The thriller movie is about a struggling singer who attends a party and wakes up after a day without realising it. She comes to realise that a day in her life is missing when a gang of men come chasing to kill her. The lead role is played by Charmee Kaur, while Jagapathi Babu plays a prominent role. Watch the movie on Amazon Prime Video.
Anushka Shetty proved her versatility with this drama film directed by Krish Jagarlamudi. Allu Arjun and Manchu Manoj along with Manoj Bajpayee, and Saranya Ponvannan add a highlight to this movie. When the lives of five people get entangled with each other due to a terrorist attack at a hospital, the story takes you into a deeper reason for their presence there at the time. The movie bagged the Nani Award for the Best Feature Film and also as the Best Film at the 58th Filmfare Awards South. Watch the movie in Voot.
Which old Telugu movies do you think we could add to this must watch list? Let us know in the comments below.