Akkineni Nagarjuna, the son of legendary actor ANR garu was one the Big 4 of the previous generation with Chiranjeevi, Balayya, and Venkatesh. Known for his great screen presence, irresistible charm, and versatility in script selection, his earned the nickname King of Tollywood by his fans and the general audience.
Here's a look at his top 15 movies.
15) Rajanna: One of the few Telugu movies I have never seen but I heard it's very good, Rajanna is directed by Rajamouli's father KV Vijayendra Prasad and told the patriotic story of a daughter who tries to understand her father Rajanna's greatness in the fight for independence against the British. Supposedly a realistic and hard hitting tale, it def makes for one of Nag's most unique movies.
14) Super: This underrated action movie from Puri Jagannadh tells the story of street racing amidst motorcycles and focuses on Akhil and Sonu played by Nagarjuna and Sonu Sood who hate each other due to an incident from their past. The debut for Anushka and a huge break for Sonu Sood in Telugu, it also has a HILARIOUS comedy track featuring Ali, Sayaji Shinde, and Brahmanandam. The musical album by Sandeep Chowta deserves a mention as it still slaps even today.
13) Soggade Chinni Nayana: This festive entertained released for Pongal 2016 and was a blockbuster due the combination of Nag and Ramya Krishna and the unique story and festive feel that it had. Billed as a family entertainer, Bangaraju sleeps with his own daughter in law while possessing his son's body which is disgusting. Nag's performance was full of charm and had a playboy attitude to it, but the questionable scenes in the end leave it towards the bottom of this list. At least the music by Anup Rubens is still catchy.
12) Nenunnanu: This romantic action drama told the story of an orphan played by Nag who takes the responsibility of taking care of Anu played by Shriya Saran. A feel good movie with great songs by MM Keeravani, Nenunannu shows the good in humans and how far they're willing to go for each other.
12) Shivamani: The first combo between Nag and Puri Jagannadh, this movie told the story of a cop named Shivamani whose girlfriend played by Asin becomes mute after her vocal chords are cut by the villain played by Prakash Raj. Nag was charming as ever and flexed his muscles throughout the numerous action sequences in the movie.
10) Hello Brother: A remake of Jackie Chan's classic hit Twin Dragons, Hello Brother told the age story of twin brother separated at birth who are actually synced with each other in their movements. A hilarious and entertaining tale, the film also had top heroines Soundarya and Ramya Krishna who added value with their awesome acting skills and glamour have made Hello Brother a classic entertainer over the years.
9) Mass: The first combo between Nag and Raghava Lawrence, Mass told the story of a man lloking to avenge the death of friend Aaadi played by an amazing Sunil who made us cry with his endearing performance. Action packed with classic songs from Devi Sri Prasad, Nag was amazing in his role and carried the movie from start to finish. Actress Jyothika also had a solid role as the 2nd heroine in the movie.
8) A criminally underrated movie that most people probably haven't seen, Gaganam tells the story when a planet gets hijacked by terrorists and how a command squad responds to the distress situation. Nag and Prakash Raj are excellent in their roles in this very unique and realistic Telugu movie that should def be watched.
7) Ragada: The definition of a perfect masala film and commercial entertainer, Ragada is one of my favorite Nagarjuna movies ever. Having unlimited fights, punch dialogues, hilarious comedy by Brahmanandam, attractive heroines in Priyamani and Anushka, and a rocking album by Thaman, Ragada had Nag in full form as Satya, an orphan searching for truth amidst a never ending number of villains. Directed by Veeru Potla, Ragada is always a fun watch and has unlimited repeats value if you love action movies like me.
6) King: Another classic from Srinu Vaitla's incredible streak of comedy entertainers, King was a hilarious action comedy that has lasted the test of time due to its comedy quotient and specifically Brahmanandam's iconic role as Jayasurya, a music director notorious for sexual harassment and plagiarism. Add the late great Srihari's role amidst a convoluted story with a twist in the end, Nag oozed class and charm while also getting a chance to flex his muscles and show off his comic timing. Featuring Trisha as the heroine, King also benefited from a nice album from DSP.
5) Oopiri: A remake of the French classic The Intouchables, Oopiri saw Tamil actor Karthi replace Jr. NTR as Nag's caretaker in Oopiri in his Telugu debut and he was arguably the highlight of the movie. His chemistry with Nag was endearing to watch and the content as whole was really heart touching throughout. Nag's performance as a paraplegic was superb and with it's emotional content and important life lessons, Oopiri was a beautiful classic which easily makes it one of the best movies of Nagarjuna's career.
4) Manam: The first Telugu movie to feature 3 generations of one family and the late ANR garu's last movie ever before he passed away, Manam was another beautiful movie showcasing so many emotions and having you in the feels throughout. Nag got the most screen time and dominated the proceedings in both his roles and it a was feast for the eyes to see ANR, Naga Chaitanya, and Nag in one frame. Director Vikram Kumar weaved his directing capabilities of telling the most complex stories in the simplest of ways and Anup Rubens musical album also added a lot of value to the movies final result as well.
3) Annamayya: To be honest, I don't really remember anything about this spiritual entertainer other than the fact that it has a zillion songs and it's directed by K Raghavendra Rao. But apparently it's an amazing movie and one of Nag's best movies so here it is.
2) Manmadhudu: Another classic from the writer director duo of Trivikram Srinivas and K Vijaya Bhaskar, this movie tells the story of a man played by Nag who hates women due to an incident in his past. When the new hire played by Sonali Bendre arrives, Nag tries to his best to make her life a living hell. However a business trip to Paris changes his view of her completely along with the classic Suribabu Lavangam played by Brahmanandam with his hilarious antics and situations he finds him in. With it's razor sharp writing, hilarious dialogues, Nag's charm , Sonali's screen presence and performance, and classic songs by DSP, Manamudhu is a family entertainer that will always last the test of time.
1) Shiva: Sometimes it's hard to remember that there was a time when Ram Gopal Varma actually made good movies given that all of his movies nowadays sink without a trace and that he gains more attention on for nonsensical comments on twitter than his work, but his debut Shiva about warring student gang groups changed the Telugu industry forever. Catapulting both Varma and Nag to superstardom, Shiva was a pathbreaking action movie that broke all Telugu movie stereotypes at the time. Also featuring Nagarjuna's wife Amala Akkineni as the female lead and the late great Raghuvaran as the main villain, Shiva is a Telugu movie classic that serves as a textbook for good filmmaking and makes for Nagarjuna's best movie ever.
* Notes: Didn't find space for Sri Ramadasu or Santosham. But they could also be on the list as well.