Indulging in Bollywood sports movies is an excellent choice to enrich your evenings, especially if you’re a fervent enthusiast of the sport depicted.
These films not only make for a delightful date night experience but also serve as captivating companions for those seeking solace in a solo movie night, providing a refreshing respite from the worries of the world.
When it comes to Bollywood sports movies, the realm of classics offers an abundance of treasures.
Narrowing it down to our cherished 19, we present a curated selection that stands tall as the epitome of excellence in sports storytelling.
Here we go!
Table of Contents
19 Best Bollywood Sports Movies of All Time
1. Lagaan (2001)
- Cast: Aamir Khan, Gracy Singh
- Director: Ashutosh Gowariker
Set during the British Raj in India, Lagaan follows the story of a group of villagers who challenge their British rulers to a game of cricket to waive off the oppressive land taxes. Aamir Khan shines as the lead protagonist, Bhuvan, and leads an ensemble cast in this epic sports drama. Directed by Ashutosh Gowariker, the film combines elements of sports, patriotism, and romance to deliver a captivating tale of unity, courage, and triumph against all odds.
2. Chak De! India (2007)
- Cast: Shah Rukh Khan, Vidya Malvade
- Director: Shimit Amin
Chak De! India revolves around Kabir Khan, a former hockey player who becomes the coach of the Indian women’s national hockey team. Shah Rukh Khan delivers a powerful performance as Kabir Khan, instilling a sense of determination and motivation in his team. Directed by Shimit Amin, the film explores themes of gender stereotypes, teamwork, and patriotism. With its inspiring narrative, strong performances, and thrilling hockey sequences, Chak De! India celebrates the resilience and triumph of the human spirit.
3. Bhaag Milkha Bhaag (2013)
- Cast: Farhan Akhtar, Sonam Kapoor
- Director: Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra
Bhaag Milkha Bhaag is a biographical sports drama based on the life of Indian athlete Milkha Singh, also known as the Flying Sikh. Farhan Akhtar delivers a phenomenal performance as Milkha Singh, showcasing his journey from a young boy traumatized by the partition of India to becoming a national sports icon. Directed by Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra, the film beautifully captures the struggles, sacrifices, and resilience of Milkha Singh. With its engaging storytelling, soulful music, and emotional depth, Bhaag Milkha Bhaag pays tribute to an extraordinary athlete and his enduring spirit.
4. Dangal (2016)
- Cast: Aamir Khan, Fatima Sana Shaikh
- Director: Nitesh Tiwari
Dangal is based on the inspiring true story of Mahavir Singh Phogat and his daughters, Geeta and Babita, who become world-class wrestlers. Aamir Khan delivers a captivating performance as Mahavir Singh Phogat, portraying his relentless pursuit of excellence and breaking gender barriers. Directed by Nitesh Tiwari, the film showcases the determination, resilience, and transformation of the Phogat family. With its powerful storytelling, strong performances, and intense wrestling sequences, Dangal highlights the importance of gender equality, family support, and the pursuit of one’s dreams.
5. Sultan (2016)
- Cast: Salman Khan, Anushka Sharma
- Director: Ali Abbas Zafar
Sultan tells the story of Sultan Ali Khan, a talented wrestler who faces personal and professional challenges on his journey to redemption and glory. Salman Khan delivers a powerful performance as Sultan, showcasing his physical transformation and emotional depth. Directed by Ali Abbas Zafar, the film explores themes of love, loss, and second chances. With its high-energy wrestling sequences, heartfelt romance, and Salman Khan’s magnetic screen presence, Sultan strikes a chord with audiences, emphasizing the importance of perseverance and self-belief in overcoming obstacles.
6. Mary Kom (2014)
- Cast: Priyanka Chopra, Darshan Kumar
- Director: Omung Kumar
Mary Kom is a biographical sports drama based on the life of Indian boxer Mary Kom, a five-time World Amateur Boxing champion. Priyanka Chopra delivers a stellar performance as Mary Kom, portraying her struggles, determination, and triumphs in a male-dominated sport. Directed by Omung Kumar, the film captures the essence of Mary Kom’s indomitable spirit and her journey from a small village in Manipur to international recognition. With its inspiring narrative, powerful performances, and intense boxing sequences, Mary Kom showcases the remarkable story of a trailblazing athlete who defied all odds.
7. Iqbal (2005)
- Cast: Shreyas Talpade, Naseeruddin Shah
- Director: Nagesh Kukunoor
Iqbal is a heartwarming sports drama that revolves around a deaf and mute aspiring cricketer named Iqbal. Shreyas Talpade delivers a breakthrough performance as Iqbal, showcasing his determination and passion for cricket. Naseeruddin Shah plays the role of Mohit, Iqbal’s supportive coach, who helps him overcome obstacles and pursue his dreams. Directed by Nagesh Kukunoor, the film beautifully explores themes of perseverance, dreams, and the power of self-belief. With its emotional depth, inspiring story, and soulful performances, Iqbal captures the triumph of the human spirit and the pursuit of one’s goals against all odds.
8. Paan Singh Tomar (2012)
- Cast: Irrfan Khan, Mahie Gill
- Director: Tigmanshu Dhulia
Paan Singh Tomar is a biographical drama based on the life of Paan Singh Tomar, an Indian soldier and athlete who turned into a notorious dacoit. Irrfan Khan delivers a riveting performance as Paan Singh Tomar, portraying his journey from being a national steeplechase champion to becoming an outlaw. Directed by Tigmanshu Dhulia, the film delves into the socio-political factors that lead to Tomar’s transformation. With its gritty storytelling, stellar performances, and exploration of societal issues, Paan Singh Tomar sheds light on the complexities of an individual’s life and the consequences of circumstances.
9. Soorma (2018)
- Cast: Diljit Dosanjh, Taapsee Pannu
- Director: Shaad Ali
Soorma is a biographical sports drama inspired by the life of Indian field hockey player Sandeep Singh. Diljit Dosanjh portrays Sandeep Singh, showcasing his journey from an aspiring athlete to a world-class hockey player. Taapsee Pannu plays the role of Harpreet, Sandeep’s love interest and a pivotal source of support. Directed by Shaad Ali, the film explores themes of resilience, love, and the power of determination. With its gripping storytelling, powerful performances, and compelling sports sequences, Soorma celebrates the triumph of the human spirit and the pursuit of one’s passion against all odds.
10. Gold (2018)
- Cast: Akshay Kumar, Mouni Roy
- Director: Reema Kagti
Gold is a period sports drama set against the backdrop of India’s first Olympic gold medal win as an independent nation in 1948. Akshay Kumar delivers a captivating performance as Tapan Das, the manager of the Indian hockey team. Directed by Reema Kagti, the film highlights the struggles and sacrifices of the team as they fight for India’s glory. With its patriotic fervor, strong performances, and immersive storytelling, Gold pays tribute to the unsung heroes who paved the way for India’s sporting success and showcases the collective pride and unity that sports can inspire.
11. M.S. Dhoni: The Untold Story (2016)
- Cast: Sushant Singh Rajput, Disha Patani
- Director: Neeraj Pandey
M.S. Dhoni: The Untold Story is a biographical sports film that traces the journey of Indian cricketer Mahendra Singh Dhoni. Sushant Singh Rajput delivers a remarkable performance, capturing the essence of Dhoni’s life, struggles, and rise to cricketing stardom. Neeraj Pandey’s movie explores Dhoni’s personal and professional life, showcasing his dedication to the game as well as the challenges he has overcome in becoming India’s most celebrated cricket captain. With its compelling storytelling, engaging performances, and emotional depth, M.S. Dhoni: The Untold Story offers a captivating glimpse into the life of a cricketing legend.
12. Saala Khadoos (2016)
- Cast: R. Madhavan, Ritika Singh
- Director: Sudha Kongara Prasad
Saala Khadoos tells the story of Adi Tomar, a disgraced boxer-turned-coach, who discovers a promising female boxer and trains her against all odds. R. Madhavan delivers a powerful performance as Adi Tomar, showcasing his transformation from a hardened coach to a mentor with a heart. Ritika Singh shines as the young boxer, delivering a spirited performance. Directed by Sudha Kongara Prasad, the film explores themes of gender bias, determination, and redemption. With its gritty portrayal of the boxing world, intense performances, and a heartfelt narrative, Saala Khadoos packs a punch as an inspiring sports drama.
13. Azhar (2016)
- Cast: Emraan Hashmi, Prachi Desai
- Director: Tony D’Souza
Azhar is a biographical sports drama based on the life of former Indian cricketer Mohammad Azharuddin. Emraan Hashmi steps into the shoes of Azhar, portraying his journey from a small-town boy with a passion for cricket to becoming the captain of the Indian cricket team. Tony D’Souza’s Azhar explores the personal and professional life of cricket legend Mohammad Azharuddin. With its compelling narrative, strong performances, and a mix of cricketing action and emotional turmoil, Azhar offers an intriguing insight into the life of a cricketing icon.
14. Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar (1992)
- Cast: Aamir Khan, Ayesha Jhulka
- Director: Mansoor Khan
Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar is a coming-of-age sports drama set in a college backdrop, focusing on the lives of rival cycling teams. Aamir Khan delivers a charismatic performance as Sanjaylal Sharma, a carefree young student who discovers his passion for cycling. Directed by Mansoor Khan, the film explores themes of competition, friendship, and personal growth. With its memorable characters, youthful energy, and a heartwarming narrative, Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar captures the essence of adolescence, dreams, and the pursuit of victory on and off the sports field.
15. Chhichhore (2019)
- Cast: Sushant Singh Rajput, Shraddha Kapoor
- Director: Nitesh Tiwari
Chhichhore is a heartwarming comedy-drama about the bonds of friendship and how far people will go to support each other. Sushant Singh Rajput leads an ensemble cast, portraying Anirudh “Anni” Pathak, a former sports champion. Nitesh Tiwari skillfully combines humor, nostalgia and emotional depth in his debut as a director. With its relatable characters, nostalgic college days, and a poignant message, Chhichhore celebrates the bonds of friendship and the triumph of the human spirit.
16. Kai Po Che! (2013)
- Cast: Sushant Singh Rajput, Rajkummar Rao, Amit Sadh
- Director: Abhishek Kapoor
Kai Po Che! is a sports drama adapted from Chetan Bhagat’s novel “The 3 Mistakes of My Life” and follows the lives of three friends with a shared passion for cricket. Sushant Singh Rajput, Rajkummar Rao, and Amit Sadh deliver captivating performances as the trio, capturing the dynamics of their friendship and their dreams of nurturing young cricketing talent. Kai Po Che! is directed by Abhishek Kapoor and explores themes of friendship, love, politics—and the impact that social upheavals have on personal lives. With its heartfelt storytelling and exceptional performances, this film will leave a lasting impression.
17. Brothers (2015)
- Cast: Akshay Kumar, Sidharth Malhotra, Jacqueline Fernandez
- Director: Karan Malhotra
Brothers focuses on the lives of two brothers, who are both MMA fighters. Akshay Kumar and Sidharth Malhotra portray two estranged brothers, each with their own reasons for entering the world of MMA. Karan Malhotra’s film explores the themes of family, redemption and forgiveness. With its intense fight sequences, emotional conflicts, and gripping performances, Brothers explores the complexities of sibling relationships and showcases the raw energy and passion of the MMA sport.
18. Dhan Dhana Dhan Goal (2007)
- Cast: John Abraham, Arshad Warsi, Bipasha Basu
- Director: Vivek Agnihotri
Dhan Dhana Dhan Goal is a sports drama set in the world of football, highlighting the challenges faced by an ethnically diverse team and their journey to achieve success. John Abraham, Arshad Warsi, and Bipasha Basu lead the cast, bringing their characters to life with energy and conviction. Vivek Agnihotri, who directed the film, combined elements of sports drama and social commentary to address themes of unity, prejudice and teamwork. With its pulsating football sequences, lively music, and an engaging narrative, Dhan Dhana Dhan Goal celebrates the spirit of sportsmanship and the pursuit of dreams.
19. Chain Kulii Ki Main Kulii (2007)
- Cast: Zain Khan, Rahul Bose, Rajesh Khera
- Director: Kittu Saluja
Chain Kulii Ki Main Kulii is a heartwarming children’s sports film that follows the journey of Karan, a young orphan who discovers his talent for cricket. Zain Khan shines as Karan, portraying his innocent charm and passion for the game. Rahul Bose plays the role of the enigmatic coach who recognizes Karan’s potential and guides him towards success. Directed by Kittu Saluja, the film combines elements of sports, emotions, and fantasy, exploring themes of determination, self-belief, and the importance of family. With its endearing storyline, memorable characters, and a touch of magic, Chain Kulii Ki Main Kulii strikes a chord with young audiences and showcases the power of dreams.
Best Bollywood Sports Movies of All Time: FAQs
Q1: What makes a Bollywood sports movie great?
Ans: A great Hindi sports movie is defined by its compelling storytelling, memorable characters, and the ability to capture the essence of the sport being portrayed. It should evoke a range of emotions, inspire and motivate viewers, and offer a glimpse into the triumphs and challenges faced by athletes.
Q2: Are these sports movies based on true stories?
Ans: Yes, several of the movies on the list are inspired by true stories or real-life events. They depict the remarkable achievements and struggles of athletes, showcasing their journeys and the impact they have made on their respective sports.
Q3: Can non-sports enthusiasts enjoy these movies?
Ans: Absolutely! While these movies revolve around sports, they often transcend the boundaries of the sporting arena and offer universal themes such as determination, teamwork, resilience, and personal growth. Even if you don’t care about sports, these movies are worth watching for their compelling stories and interesting characters.
Q4: Can children watch these movies?
Ans: The suitability of these movies for children may vary depending on factors such as age and content. While some movies may be suitable for a younger audience, others may contain mature themes or intense sports action. It’s advisable to review the movie’s rating or content warnings and make an informed decision based on the child’s age and sensitivity.
Q5: Can these movies be enjoyed with subtitles for non-Hindi speakers?
Ans: Yes, many of these movies are available with subtitles in various languages, allowing non-Hindi speakers to enjoy and understand the stories and dialogues. Subtitles ensure that the essence and emotions of the films are conveyed effectively, making them accessible to a wider audience.