Top 10 Bollywood Movies Depicting Cancer Patient Journeys – Stories of Resilience and Hope

Top 10 Bollywood Movies Depicting Cancer Patient Journeys: Stories of Resilience and Hope

Top 10 Bollywood Movies Depicting Cancer Patient Journeys: Stories of Resilience and Hope


Bollywood, the Indian film industry, has been known for its diverse range of storytelling, including touching and emotionally impactful tales of cancer patients. These movies not only provide entertainment but also create awareness about the struggles and resilience of individuals battling cancer.

In this blog, we will explore ten Bollywood movies that sensitively depict the journey of cancer patients, leaving a lasting impact on audiences worldwide.

Anand (1971)

Regarded as one of Bollywood’s finest classics, “Anand” is a heartwarming tale of friendship and courage. The film follows the story of a terminally ill cancer patient named Anand (played by Rajesh Khanna) and his unwavering optimism, which touches the life of his doctor, Dr. In the role of Bhaskar, Amitabh Bachchan eloquently delivers the following line:

“I find immense inspiration in the indomitable spirit of Anand (played by Rajesh Khanna) and his unwavering optimism.” The movie beautifully showcases how Anand’s infectious positivity brings hope and joy even in the face of a life-threatening illness.

Kal Ho Naa Ho (2003)

“Kal Ho Naa Ho” is a soul-stirring romantic drama that revolves around the life of Aman (played by Shah Rukh Khan), who conceals his own cancer diagnosis from those around him. As he tries to unite his friends, Naina (played by Preity Zinta) and Rohit (played by Saif Ali Khan), he selflessly spreads love and happiness. This emotionally charged film delves into the complexities of relationships and the importance of living life to the fullest.

My Brother… Nikhil (2005)

“My Brother… Nikhil” is based on the true story of a swimmer named Nikhil (played by Sanjay Suri), who is diagnosed with HIV/AIDS in the 1980s, when awareness about the disease was limited. The film not only addresses the stigma associated with HIV/AIDS but also portrays the unconditional support and love of Nikhil’s family and partner (played by Juhi Chawla). It’s a poignant portrayal of resilience and the power of familial bonds.

Taare Zameen Par (2007)

Although not primarily focused on cancer, “Taare Zameen Par” explores the challenges faced by a dyslexic child named Ishaan (played by Darsheel Safary). His life takes a dramatic turn when he is understood and supported by his art teacher, Ram Shankar Nikumbh (played by Aamir Khan). The film portrays the importance of empathy, understanding, and recognizing the potential in every individual, regardless of their struggles.

Udaan (2010)

“Udaan” is an evocative drama that tells the story of Rohan (played by Rajat Barmecha), a young man who dreams of becoming a writer but is held back by his oppressive father. Amidst the emotional turmoil, Rohan discovers that his father is battling cancer. The film beautifully portrays the complexities of family dynamics and the pursuit of one’s dreams.

Guzaarish (2010)

In “Guzaarish,” Hrithik Roshan portrays Ethan, a once-famous magician who becomes paralyzed after a tragic accident. As he fights for the right to end his life with dignity, he reconnects with his former nurse, Sofia (played by Aishwarya Rai Bachchan). The film delves into themes of euthanasia, love, and the value of life, leaving audiences with a profound sense of introspection.

5cm (2012)

“5cm” is an emotional rollercoaster that follows the lives of three friends—Kabir (played by Hrithik Roshan), Arjun (played by Abhay Deol), and Imraan (played by Farhan Akhtar)—as they embark on a road trip to fulfill their terminally ill friend’s last wish. The movie beautifully captures their emotional journey, friendship, and the bittersweet realization of life’s impermanence.

Dear Zindagi (2016)

While not centered around cancer, “Dear Zindagi” addresses mental health issues and the importance of seeking help. The film follows the life of Kaira (played by Alia Bhatt), a young cinematographer, who seeks therapy from Dr. To cope with her emotional challenges, Kaira (portrayed by Alia Bhatt) seeks therapeutic guidance from Dr. Jehangir Khan, essayed by the charismatic Shah Rukh Khan.. The movie emphasizes the significance of mental well-being and the need to break societal taboos around seeking help.

Ae Dil Hai Mushkil (2016)

This romantic drama revolves around the lives of Ayan (played by Ranbir Kapoor), Alizeh (played by Anushka Sharma), and Saba (played by Aishwarya Rai Bachchan). While cancer is a subplot, it profoundly impacts the characters’ lives, leading to heart-wrenching and emotional moments. The film explores themes of unrequited love, friendship, and the resilience of the human spirit.

Chhapaak (2020)

“Chhapaak” is based on the real-life story of acid attack survivor Laxmi Agarwal (played by Deepika Padukone). The film highlights her journey as she fights for justice and raises awareness about acid attacks. While not directly related to cancer, “Chhapaak” portrays the courage and strength of a survivor, inspiring audiences to stand against atrocities and support victims.


Bollywood has been successful in creating impactful and moving stories around the sensitive subject of cancer and other life-altering challenges. These ten movies not only entertain but also bring to light the emotional struggles, courage, and strength of cancer patients and survivors. By depicting these stories on the silver screen, Bollywood has contributed significantly to creating awareness and empathy towards those battling cancer, leaving a lasting impact on the audience’s hearts and minds.

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