Old Telugu Movies: Most of my favorite movies in Telugu are from the classical era: the 1950s and early and mid-1960s. And also, my love for old Telugu cinema is not based only on nostalgia, for the “good ancient times, ” because they also had great stories and characterizations. Besides, even if you take the technical aspects, the old black and white cinema was innovative in photography or light and shadow editing.
It was also when much of Telugu cinema was on significant literary works, both Indian and foreign. That said, this form of cinema stalled in routine in the late 1960s, becoming increasingly theatrical and melodramatic without evolving much.
More About Old Telugu Movies
There are so many mythological Telugu cinemas, primarily old movies. Further, most of them are good movies—Rama Rao, Savitri, and especially unforgettable music.
S.V. Ranga Rao received the best actor award as “Keechaka” at the international film festival. He was such a talented actor. So, Rama Rao’s acting talent in mythological roles goes without saying here. He was just magnificent.
Top 9 Old Telugu Movies You Must See
Here is a list of 9 old Telugu movies that you must see before you die. Besides, no matter how often you look at these visual gems, you will always find something new that will surprise you.
Mayabazar is an old classic Telugu film famous for its groundbreaking visual effects, humorous anecdotes, and jaw-dropping performances. It is by K. V. Reddy and is the first mythological film in Telugu cinema.
The fantasy film portrays the story of Sasirekha Parinayam based on the epic Mahabharata. Abhimanyu (A.N.R.) is in love with Balarama’s daughter Sasirekha (Savitri). Balarama promises his daughter to Duryodhana’s son, breaking the promise to Abhimanyu’s mother. The mighty Pandavas lose the game of dice, thus losing their kingdom to the Kauravas. The rest is how Ghatotkacha (S.V. Ranga Rao) and Krishna (N.T.R) help the lovers unite.
“Hey, you look like a Devadas!” Did you ever hear this and wonder how it came?
The film is on Devadas, a famous Bengali novel by Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay.
The romantic cult classic tells the love story between Devadasu (N.T.R), the zamindar’s son, and Parvati (Savitri), poor neighbor Neelakantham. When Neelakantham talks about the alliance with the zamindar, he refuses. Irritated, Neelakantham arranges for Parvathi’s marriage to her eldest widower. Unable to forget Parvathi, Devadasu becomes an alcoholic.
Missamma is one of the most beloved characters among old Telugu movies. By L. V. Prasad, the film is from Rabindranath Maitra’s Bengali play, Manmoyee Girls School.
The funny film tells the story of a zamindar’s daughter, Mahalakshmi, who disappeared as a child. She is then taken care of by a Christian couple, who call her Mary. Unaware of her true identity, Mary pretends to marry her former colleague T. N. Rao to get a teaching job at the zamindar school. The rest of the movie revolves around her attempt not to get sucked into it and is full of fun and humor.
Thodi Kodallu (1957)
Thodi Kodallu, which means sisters in English, is based on the Bengali novel by Sharat Chandra Chaterjee Nishkriti. The story revolves around a joint family made up of three brothers and their wives.
It is not just a movie but rather a story that takes place in many other Indian homes. One of the wives, Anasuya, who is jealous of the bond between the other two sisters, argues with each other. Eventually, the family shatters, but in the end, the family comes together, and Anasuya apologizes for her actions.
Gundamma Katha (1962)
Gundamma Katha is a dramatic comedy directed by Kamalakara Kameswara Rao. And also, the film is in part on the play, ‘The Tame Shrew’ by William Shakespeare.
Gundamma Katha is the story of a wealthy and ruthless widow, Gundamma, who mistreats her generous stepdaughter Lakshmi. Gundamma’s goal is to marry her spoiled daughter Saroja to a rich boy. So, the plot revolves around how Lakshmi’s suitor Anji and Saroja’s lover Raja, both sons of a wealthy man, teach Gundamma a lesson after the couples’ weddings.
Lava Kusa (1963)
Lava Kusa is a Hindu mythological film directed by C. S. Rao and C. Pullaiah. Lava Kusa is the first Telugu color film.
Karna and Duryodhana boat. Karna, who is often insulted for her weak birth, dedicates her life to Duryodhana. Further, In the end, the two loyal friends reunite in Heaven.
Alluri Seeta Rama Raju (1974)
The film portrays the eternal friendship of Karna and Duryodhana. Karna, who is often insulted by her weak birth, dedicates her life to Duryodhana. In the end, the two faithful friends meet in Heaven.
Alluri Seeta Rama Raju (Krishna) is a Telugu biographical action film directed by V. Ramachandra Rao. The film portrays the life of the Indian revolutionary Alluri Seeta Rama Raju, known for his active role in the Rampa rebellion of 1922-24.
Sankarabharanam is a musical drama directed by K. Viswanath. The film is on the list of the 100 best Indian movies sahasam swasaga sagipo movie of all time.
The acclaimed film is on the life of Sankara Sastri, a famous Carnatic singer. All villagers misunderstand the student-guru relationship. When pop music is booming, Sastri loses his loyal fans. Sastri dies, announcing the son of his student as heir to his music.
Swati Muthyam (1986)
Kamal Hasan, one of the best Indian actors, plays a central role in this award-winning film. It is a dramatic film directed by K. Viswanath.
Shivaiah, an autistic orphan, is married to a widow Lalitha, who her sister-in-law abuses. Villagers regard a widow’s marriage as a sin and oppose the marriage. Lalitha later died due to her poor health. Shivaji is coming out of his house with a tulsi plant, a sign of Lalita’s love.
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