Telugu superstar Nandamuri Balakrishna, who is celebrating his 60th birthday today, is the sixth child of legendary actor-politician NT Rama Rao, who had achieved a demi-god status through the portrayal of many mythological characters.
When Balakrishna started playing lead roles in the late 1980s, the circumstances in the Telugu film industry was completely different. The mythological movies had given way for testosterone-fuelled modern-day action dramas. And Balakrishna thrived during the period. He could dance, speak lengthy dialogues without breaking a sweat and take part in stunt sequences that defy all known rules of gravity.
If you search on YouTube for ‘funny Balayya videos’, you will find hundreds of short clips from Nandamuri Balakrishna’s movies. The inbuilt over-the-topness of his films has become the favourite subject of internet memes.
But, what is touted to be ‘funny’ today, defined the idea of ‘real man’ for many in the past generation. Machismo is not just a personality trait. It is the source of all superpowers in Balakrishna’s movies.
In films, Nandamuri Balakrishna can turn a normal umbrella into a parachute to land safely, after he jumps off a bridge. He can make a portion of a train go backwards with a move of his finger. He could summon the power of thunder to strike terrorists. He could disarm a time bomb even when he is heavily restrained. Balakrishna’s characters always find a way to turn things around in an impossible situation.
Here is a look at nine over-the-top action movies of Nandamuri Balakrishna you can watch online:
1. Chennakesava Reddy: One of the biggest hits in Balakrishna’s career is a relationship/revenge drama involving a father and son. It is set in the backdrop of Rayalaseema and revolves around a group of people who live and kill for pride. (Chennakesava Reddy available on Sun NXT)
2. Aditya 369: Arguably, it has one of the gentle characters played by Balakrishna. He channelled the poise and grace that is usually reserved for his mythological movies. Written and directed by Singeetam Srinivasa Rao, it is a science-fiction drama about time travel. (Aditya 369 available on YouTube)
3. Narasimha Naidu: Another Rayalaseema-based movie, where Balakrishna unleashes his classical dancing skills. And excessive action is just a bonus. (Narasimha Naidu is on Sun NXT)
4. Palanati Brahmanaidu: It is a movie made to present preposterous ideas of heroism. In a scene, Balakrishna’s character calls on all his ancestors to make a stationed train ride backwards. (Palanati Brahmanaidu is available on YouTube)
5. Vijayendra Varma: Balakrishna plays an army officer who takes on Pakistani terrorists. The action sequences are ridiculous to the point it gives you belly laughs. (Vijayendra Varma is available on Sun NXT)
6. Allari Pidugu: In a scene, Balakrishna stops a time bomb by firing an empty bullet shell from his mouth. Enough said. (Allari Pidugu is available on YouTube)
7. Okka Magadu: Okka Magadu is a sort of answer to Kamal Haasan’s Indian. The film has an aged vigilante with a history of freedom struggle. But, it is unapologetically over-the-top and solely about one man and his mission as the title suggests. (Okka Magadu is available on YouTube)
8. Legend: The movie is written and directed by Boyapati Srinu. And that is a clue about the kind of extravagance that you will be treated to. The slashing and gabbing are non-stop, and Balakrishna thrives in Legend. The film can give a lifetime worth of ideas to Bollywood filmmaker Rohit Shetty. (Legend is available on Sun NXT)
9. Ruler: The movie is as superlative as its title. The KS Ravi Kumar directorial has Balakrishna in his element as a fearless police officer and a powerful businessman. (Ruler is available on Sun NXT)
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