5 Best Bollywood Superhero Movies From The Hindi Industry


Superhero movies have become a global sensation. While Hollywood’s influence in the genre is huge, thanks to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it’s expanded beyond just America. With many different entertainment industries all over the world doing their take on superhero content, Bollywood is not too far behind. The superhero genre of Bollywood is few, but the attempts have been amazing with a lot of different things going for it. The premise of each of those movies though is still very much rooted within the cultural context of the country. Which is really what makes them stand out. Indian superhero movies have yet to be as hugely successful for the industry as its other genres. But the same could have been said about Hollywood in the ’90s too, pre-Fox’s X-Men franchise. So let’s take a look at the best Bollywood superhero movies.

Understanding The Superhero Genre Of Bollywood Movies

Best Bollywood Superhero Movies Shahrenshah.

Before getting into all the superhero movies of India, we should contextualize the kind of content considered standard for a Bollywood movie. Elements which might might throw off general, non-Bollywood audiences. Yes, there’s singing and dancing, usually of a romantic nature, just like any other musical. But more than that, the country’s economic and socio-political situation plays a big part in its stories. In the ’80s and ’90s, political corruption ran rampant (still today, if you ask some), so the film industry was very much a bastion for escapism and relief from the harshness of society. Audiences went to the cinema for hope, optimism and a reaffirmation of better things to come.

This gave birth to the cop movie genre of Bollywood. A no-nonsense police officer hero who rooted out corruption and bad guys was the ideal that audiences wanted to believe about their own society. Playing a hero-cop is what defined the career of veteran superstar Amitabh Bachchan in many different movies, including Zanjeer. Bachchan played his own vigilante superhero in the superhit Shahenshah. A proto-superhero movie where he played a sleazy corrupt cop by day, but became a vicious vigilante at night.

The honest cop of Bollywood movies, in many ways, pre-dated the mask and cape superhero concept in India. An idealist police officer who could take on the world and defeat countless bad guys regardless of the cost was possibly the first-ever Indian superhero concept. It explains why the cop-hero is one of Bollywood’s most go-to genres of movies in any decade. Films such as Singham, Dabbanng, Mardaani and more have always proven box office successes. Playing a hero cop is almost like a right of passage for any successful Bollywood star.

Krrish Is One Of The Most Mainstream Bollywood Superhero Movies


In 2003, writer-director Rakesh Roshan cast his superstar son, Hrithik Roshan in Koi Mil Gaya, as an autistic man living in a small mountain town in India. The arrival of a cutesy little alien creature saw the man gain powers, both physical and mental. It was a very unofficial adaptation of Spielberg’s E.T. and Close Encounters Of The Third Kind. Koi Mil Gaya (I’ve Found Someone) put a very Bollywood spin on those movies, and it was a huge success. The kid-friendly story, with a sci-fi spin about a man-child who overcomes emotional challenges with the help of an alien, was a sweet enough story to resonate with everyone. The movie’s commercial success spawned a very different sequel. In the sequel, the son of the main character from Koi Mil Gaya was born with superhuman powers, passed down from the powers his father got from the alien.

The sequel, named Krrish after the protagonist (for some reason), played out as a more traditional superhero story. Hrithik Roshan returned to play the son of the character he played in Koi Mil Gaya. Fearing his powers, his grandmother hid him away in an even remote village in India. An accident reveals his powers to the world, kickstarting his superhero journey. Everything else that follows is basically like the usual superhero tropes but in a modern-day Bollywood movie. The third act basically takes directly from the Ben Affleck movie, Paycheck. Despite that, the movie was successful enough to get its own sequel entitled Krrish 3 (again, I don’t know why.)

A Flying Jatt Embodied More Superhero Elements Than Any Other Indian Movie

Best Bollywood Superhero Movies Jatt.

A more direct Indian superhero movie came in the form of A Flying Jatt. The Jatt people are part of a different Indian sub-culture with their own traditions and practices. The story of A Flying Jatt follows the life of a meek and mild-mannered young man played by Tiger Shroff. His real, legal name, by the way. Shroff’s character doesn’t follow his religion and culture due to his issues with his father. He is kind of a coward in the face of adversity and remains so even after an accident grants him Superman-like powers. Oh, and the villain of the movie has a very Toxic Avenger-like origin, played by Nathan Jones from Mad Max: Fury Road.

A Flying Jatt is one of the best deceptions of a superhero’s journey that any Indian movie has ever done so far. There are all the fun Marvel-like sequences of training montages, superhero training shots and so much more. But the heart of the movie comes when the hero accepts his role, by embracing his own identity which is wrapped up in the religion he abandoned years ago after his father’s death. It’s a plot point that’s unique to the Jatt culture of India, making this truly feel like one of the best Bollywood superhero movies.

Bhavesh Joshi Superhero Goes A More Dark Knight Route

Best Bollywood Superhero Movies Bhavesh.

On the other side of things, Bhavesh Joshi Superhero looks at the vigilante side of Indian superhero movies. A regular guy played by Harshvardhan Kapoor is all set to follow the route of a normal Indian youth graduating college and getting a job in America. His friends, however, are activists trying to speak against the injustices of their country and improve it. After his friend’s brutal murder, the hero within Kapoor’s character arises. He takes the fight to the streets, masquerading as a superhero under the name of his friend, and tries to root out the evil responsible.

Bhavesh Joshi is more in line with street-level superheroes like Batman and or the CW-verse iteration of Arrow. Fuelled by anger and darkness, this is a Bollywood superhero movie that is more realistic and gritty than what the industry produced so far. While appreciated by critics, unfortunately, the realism didn’t resonate with audiences who have more bright and fun expectations of superhero movies. The movie failed to perform at the box office.

Mr. India Is The Modern Day Introduction Of The Superhero Genre Of Bollywood

Best Bollywood Superhero Movies Mr. India.

Non-Indian audiences will recognize the name of Shekhar Kapur as the director of movies like the Cate Blanchett starring Elizabeth movies or Heath Ledger’s The Fourth Feathers. However, before his time in Hollywood Kapur arrived on the scene in Bollywood with Mr. India. Widely regarded as the first true superhero movie of Bollywood, Mr. India doesn’t follow the usual superhero movie format. After the death of his scientist father, Anil Kapoor’s character grows up to be a man who takes care of other orphans in his massive inherited house. But when he discovers his father’s work, which can turn a man invisible, he finds true purpose in his life. Spurred on by a loss, he takes on the avatar of Mr. India to fight against bad guys and take on the evil Mogambo.

Mr. India has all the trappings of a true superhero movie. A cartoonish but intimidating villain, a hero with his own child sidekicks rooting for him and an atmosphere of a fun and family-friendly story. While a little long, the movie has something for everyone and really captures the joy of having powers and doing good with them. And non-Bollywood audiences will recognize the hero as a younger Anil Kapoor seen in Hollywood movies like Slumdog Millionaire and Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol.

Be sure to let me know your favourite in the comments below. Or reach out to me on (Twitter) at @theshahshahid to let me know if I missed any.

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Entertainment Writer | Film & TV Critic | Bollywood Blogger | Host of Split Screen Podcast | Proud Geek Girl Dad