10 best bollywood mystery movies

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Bollywood, the vibrant and diverse film industry of India, has gifted the world with countless gems across various genres. Among these, mystery movies hold a special place, captivating audiences with their intricate plots, unexpected twists, and compelling storytelling. If you’re a fan of suspense and intrigue, here’s a list of the 10 best Bollywood mystery movies that you simply can’t miss.

10 best bollywood mystery movies

10 best Bollywood mystery movies

1. Kahaani (2012)

“Kahaani,” directed by Sujoy Ghosh, is a gripping mystery thriller that has left an indelible mark on Bollywood cinema.

Plot Summary:
The movie follows Vidya Bagchi (Vidya Balan), a pregnant woman who arrives in Kolkata in search of her missing husband. Her quest uncovers a labyrinth of secrets, lies, and betrayals, leading to a shocking climax.

Key Highlights:

  • Stellar performance by Vidya Balan
  • Atmospheric depiction of Kolkata
  • Unexpected plot twists

Why It’s a Must-Watch:
“Kahaani” stands out for its strong female protagonist and its ability to keep the audience on the edge of their seats from start to finish.

2. Talaash (2012)

Directed by Reema Kagti, “Talaash” is a psychological thriller that delves into the depths of human emotions and the supernatural.

Plot Summary:
Inspector Surjan Singh Shekhawat (Aamir Khan) investigates a high-profile car accident, which gradually intertwines with the haunting loss of his son. The narrative skillfully blends suspense with emotional depth.

Key Highlights:

  • Aamir Khan’s intense performance
  • Supernatural elements
  • Emotional undercurrents

Unique Elements:
“Talaash” explores themes of guilt, grief, and redemption, making it more than just a conventional mystery.

3. Drishyam (2015)

“Drishyam,” directed by Nishikant Kamat, is a remake of the Malayalam film of the same name, offering a compelling story of an ordinary man’s extraordinary measures to protect his family.

Plot Summary:
Vijay Salgaonkar (Ajay Devgn) goes to great lengths to cover up a crime his family is involved in. The movie showcases his battle of wits against the police, led by IG Meera Deshmukh (Tabu).

Key Highlights:

  • Engaging storyline
  • Brilliant performances by Ajay Devgn and Tabu
  • Intelligent plot twists

Impact on Audiences:
“Drishyam” is lauded for its meticulous screenplay and the moral dilemmas it presents, resonating deeply with viewers.

4. Special 26 (2013)

Directed by Neeraj Pandey, “Special 26” is based on real-life incidents, depicting a heist drama with a twist.

Plot Summary:
A group of con artists, led by Ajay Singh (Akshay Kumar), pose as CBI officers to execute a series of raids on prominent businessmen and politicians. Their ultimate plan is a daring heist that keeps the audience guessing till the end.

Key Highlights:

  • Strong ensemble cast
  • Real-life inspiration
  • Clever narrative

Real-Life Inspiration:
“Special 26” draws from actual events, adding an extra layer of intrigue and authenticity to the story.

5. Andhadhun (2018)

Sriram Raghavan’s “Andhadhun” is a dark comedy thriller that masterfully blends humor with suspense.

Plot Summary:
A blind pianist, Akash (Ayushmann Khurrana), becomes embroiled in a series of mysterious events after witnessing a murder. The film takes the audience on a roller-coaster ride of unexpected twists.

Key Highlights:

  • Ayushmann Khurrana’s outstanding performance
  • Innovative storytelling
  • Perfect blend of comedy and suspense

Critical Acclaim:
“Andhadhun” received widespread acclaim for its original plot and was praised at numerous film festivals globally.

6. Gupt: The Hidden Truth (1997)

Directed by Rajiv Rai, “Gupt” is a classic Bollywood mystery thriller with a cult following.

Plot Summary:
The film revolves around Sahil Sinha (Bobby Deol), who is framed for his stepfather’s murder. As he escapes from prison to prove his innocence, the narrative unravels a web of secrets.

Key Highlights:

  • Memorable soundtrack
  • Suspenseful narrative
  • Strong performances by the cast

Cult Status:
“Gupt” is remembered for its engaging plot and unexpected twists, making it a favorite among mystery enthusiasts.

7. Ittefaq (2017)

A modern adaptation of the 1969 film, “Ittefaq” directed by Abhay Chopra, redefines the mystery genre for contemporary audiences.

Plot Summary:
The story follows Vikram (Sidharth Malhotra) and Maya (Sonakshi Sinha), who are the prime suspects in two murders. As Inspector Dev (Akshaye Khanna) investigates, the film keeps the viewers guessing about the true culprit.

Key Highlights:

  • Gripping storyline
  • Strong performances
  • Modern cinematic techniques

Modern Adaptation:
“Ittefaq” successfully updates a classic tale with fresh elements and a faster pace.

8. Badla (2019)

“Badla,” directed by Sujoy Ghosh, is a riveting mystery thriller that keeps the audience on their toes.

Plot Summary:
Naina Sethi (Taapsee Pannu), a successful businesswoman, finds herself accused of murder. Her lawyer, Badal Gupta (Amitabh Bachchan), works to uncover the truth, leading to a series of mind-bending revelations.

Key Highlights:

  • Powerful performances by Amitabh Bachchan and Taapsee Pannu
  • Intricate plot
  • Unexpected twists

Adaptation and Originality:
“Badla” is an adaptation of the Spanish film “The Invisible Guest,” yet it stands out with its unique cultural nuances and storytelling style.

9. Ugly (2014)

Anurag Kashyap’s “Ugly” is a dark, gritty mystery that explores the underbelly of human nature.

Plot Summary:
The film follows the disappearance of a young girl and the ensuing investigation, which reveals the dark and flawed lives of the characters involved.

Key Highlights:

  • Realistic portrayal of human flaws
  • Intense and raw performances
  • Dark and atmospheric tone

Dark and Gritty Tone:
“Ugly” is known for its unflinching look at the darker side of human emotions and relationships, making it a standout in the genre.

10. Manorama Six Feet Under (2007)

“Manorama Six Feet Under,” directed by Navdeep Singh, is an underrated gem that deserves more recognition.

Plot Summary:
Satyaveer (Abhay Deol), an amateur detective, gets involved in a complex case of murder and deceit in a small Rajasthani town. The film draws inspiration from Roman Polanski’s “Chinatown.”

Key Highlights:

  • Strong narrative
  • Atmospheric setting
  • Abhay Deol’s performance

Underrated Gem:
Despite its limited commercial success, “Manorama Six Feet Under” is praised for its intricate plot and engaging storytelling.

Common Themes in Bollywood Mystery Movies

Bollywood mystery movies often explore themes of deception, moral ambiguity, and the quest for truth. Recurring motifs include mistaken identities, complex character arcs, and psychological depth, which keep audiences hooked.

Evolution of Mystery Genre in Bollywood

From early classics to contemporary hits, the mystery genre in Bollywood has evolved significantly. Early films laid the groundwork with simple yet effective narratives, while modern movies incorporate sophisticated storytelling techniques and high production values.

Why Bollywood Excels in Mystery Movies

Bollywood excels in mystery movies due to its strong storytelling tradition, cultural richness, and innovative direction. These films often blend suspense with emotional depth, providing a unique viewing experience.


Bollywood’s mystery movies offer a captivating blend of suspense, drama, and unexpected twists. From classics like “Gupt” to modern masterpieces like “Andhadhun,” these films showcase the industry’s ability to craft compelling narratives that keep audiences engaged till the very end. Dive into these cinematic gems and experience the thrill of Bollywood mysteries!


What makes a Bollywood mystery movie unique?
Bollywood mystery movies are unique due to their rich cultural context, emotional depth, and intricate storytelling that often blend suspense with drama.

Are these movies available on streaming platforms?
Yes, many of these movies are available on popular streaming platforms like Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hotstar.

Which movie should a newcomer to Bollywood mystery start with?
A great starting point would be “Kahaani” or “Drishyam,” both of which are highly acclaimed and showcase the best of Bollywood mystery.

How do Bollywood mystery movies compare to Hollywood ones?
While both industries produce compelling mystery films, Bollywood often incorporates more emotional and cultural elements, providing a different but equally engaging experience.

Are there any upcoming Bollywood mystery movies to look out for?
Yes, Bollywood continues to produce exciting mystery films. Keep an eye out for upcoming releases by following entertainment news and streaming platforms.

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