What are the ten best Telugu movies with subtitles? The Telugu film industry is one of the largest in India, trailing the Hindi and Tamil film industries. Here are ten Telugu movies that have made important contributions to Indian cinema. All ten films received national recognition and regional acclaim. They are available for online viewing with subtitles in various languages, and many of them are also dubbed in different Indian languages.

  1. “Bhakta Prahlada.” “Bhakta Prahlada” is a 1942 Telugu movie about Prahlada, a character from one tradition of Hinduism famed for his devotion to the Supreme God, Vishnu. This classic musical drama features the talents of Vemuri Gaggaiah, Varalakshmi G., and M.V. Rajamma.

  2. “Missamma.” “Missamma” is a Telugu comedy film from 1955. The funny movie follows two unemployed college graduates (a Christian and a Hindu) who pretend to be a married couple in order to work as school teachers in a small village. Taraka Rama Rao Nandamuri, Savitri, and Akkineni Nageshwara Rao star in the film.

  3. “Tenali Ramakrishna.” “Tenali Ramakrishna” is a 1956 Telugu film based on the story of Garlapati Tenali Ramakrishna. Also known as Tenali Rama and Vikata Kavi, he was a sixteenth-century court poet of the emperor Krishna Rai. This classic Indian comedy stars Taraka Rama Rao Nandamuri, Akkineni Nageshwara Rao, and Chittor V. Nagaiah.

  4. “Mayabazar.” “Mayabazar” is a 1957 Telugu movie that was dubbed in Kannada and later produced in Tamil. Based on “The Mahabharata,” an Indian folk tale, this movie is one of the classics of Indian cinema. The film stars Gummadi, Taraka Rama Rao Nandamuri, and Savitri.

  5. “Bhookailas.” “Bhookailas” is a Telugu musical drama from 1958. Described as a mythological film, the story is set in the Hindu pilgrimage center in Gokarna, India, home of the Hindu deity, Shiva. Taraka Rama Rao Nandamuri, Akkineni Nageshwara Rao, and Jamuna star in the film.

  6. “Narthanasala.” “Narthanasala” is a classic 1963 Telugu film based on Hindu mythology. It deals with the Viraata Parvam in the epic folk tale, “The Mahabharata.” This timeless musical drama stars Savitri, Taraka Rama Rao Nandamuri, and Rajagopal Dandamudi.

  7. “Lava Kusa.” “Lava Kusa” is another classic Telugu movie from 1963. The Hindu mythological movie follows the lives of the sons of Rama and Sita, avatars of the Hindu god Vishnu. Taraka Rama Rao Nandamuri, Anjali Devi, and Chittor V. Nagaiah have starring roles in the film.

  8. “Sankarabharanam.” “Sankarabharanam” is a 1979 Telugu musical drama. Considered one of the best movies ever to emerge from the Telugu film industry, the story deals with Indian classical music and a special student-teacher relationship. Somayajulu J.V., Manju Bhargavi, and Tulasi star in the film.

  9. “Ananda Bhairavi.” “Ananda Bhairavi” is an award-winning Telugu film from 1982. The story focuses on the origin of kuchipudi dance, a classic Indian dance form--and a man who fights to pass on this dance heritage by training a young girl. The movie features the talents of Girish Karnad, Malavika, and Rajesh.

  10. “Mayuri.” “Mayuri,” also known as “Mayoori,” is a 1984 Telugu movie. It was dubbed into Malayalam and later remade as “Naache Mayuri” in the Hindi language. The movie is based on the real-life story of Sudha Chandran, an Indian dancer who turned to film after she lost her leg in an accident. Sudha Chandran, Subhakar, and Narayana P.L. star in the film.

- Annette Smith