Free Press Journal

10 Bollywood powerful classic movies that carried strong social message


Cinema has played a great role in addressing the social causes. From commenting on cast system to an ordinary man’s rights, some of the classics have successfully addressed these social evils and they are relevant even today. They created the much-needed new wave in the otherwise conservative and unjust society. Following are few old Bollywood classics directed by legendary directors such Bimal Roy, V Shantaram and many more that carry strong social messages without being preachy.

  1. Do Bigha Zameen

The film was made in 1953 and was directed by Bimal Roy. The plot of the film is about a farmer’s land taken away from him to build a mill. The movie shows the struggle of the poor farmer who tries to save his land. ‘Do Bigha Zameen’ has a strong social message and the film is said to be inspired by Italian neo-realistic cinema.

  1. Pyaasa

It was directed by Guru Dutt and written by Abrar Alvi. The film talks about the condition of the artists in the society. The film is a love story and the message given in the film is relevant even today. The classic film Pyaasa also talks about how prostitutes are treated in the society.

  1. Do Aankhen, Baara Hath


V. Shantaram directed film is about twelve criminals who changed and became better human beings thanks to their good Jail warden. The film talks about how prisoners should be treated like humans. The film is written by G.D. Madgulkar.

  1. Naya Daur

‘Naya Daur’ was directed by B R Chopra and written by Akhtar Mirza and Kamil Rashid. Things start changing when the new landlord tries to develop and urbanise the village. The film talks about man v/s machine age.

  1. Mother India

A great hit, this film earned praises not just in India but also overseas. The film was directed by Mehboob Khan and written by Wajahat Mirza. The film addresses social issues such as poverty, illiteracy and problems faced by landlords.

  1. Mohan Joshi Hazir Ho

A satire, the film talks about how the rights of the ordinary men are violated by the ones in power. Builder lobbying has become very common and the film was also inspired by a real-life incidence. ‘Mohan Joshi Hazir Ho’ is directed by Saeed Akhtar Mirza and written by Yusuf Mehta.

  1. Bandini

‘Bandini’ was one of the films that one call feminist. The story is about a woman and the viewpoint of the woman is the centre of the story. The plot is love triangle and comments on the freedom movement. The film is a love triangle and is written and directed by Bimal Roy and Jarasandha.

  1. Sujata

‘Sujata’ comments on the caste system which is relevant even today. The story is about a couple that adopts a baby who is considered to be of a lower cast. The film is directed by Bimal Roy and written by Nabendu Ghosh.

  1. Achhut Kanya

Achhut Kanya is written by J.S. Casshyap and Niranjan Pal and is directed by Franz Osten. The film is also about caste system in the society. The film is about two couple in love with each other but caste system comes in their way.

  1. Ankur

The film addresses the problems of farmers and how they get oppressed by the feudal lords in a village. Ankur is directed and written by Shyam Benegal.