Top 15 Movie Genres and What They Mean

Movies offer so much more than just entertainment. They transport you to another world, without even having to move. The following are the Top 15 Different Movie Genres in Bollywood and Hollywood, with one example of each.

Top 15 Movie Genres and What They Mean

1. Drama

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The word drama is often used quite casually. However, in terms of a movie genre, it pertains to portrayals that are deeply emotional. More often than not, dramatic movies have exaggeration. Emotions and feelings of the story’s characters are intensified in order to make them appear larger than life. The fact that such movies usually tend to make audiences relate to the content is what makes them quite successful.

Hollywood: Fight Club

Bollywood: My Name is Khan

2. Comedy

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The comedy genre is all about humour. After all, life can get dull without some fun! This genre has been in existence since the Charlie Chaplin era. In terms of acting, it has one of the most challenging roles to pull off. That is because having a great comic timing is more complex than it seems to be. Comedy movies are a great escape from stressful, monotonous lives, supplying loads of laughter.

Hollywood: The Mask

Bollywood: Hera Pheri series

3. Science fiction 

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Science fiction or sci-fi genre of movies is based on science and fiction. These movies have a mix of both realistic, practical science and imaginary, fictional components & characters. Elements like space, aliens, futuristic gadgets, robots and the like often make a huge part in science fiction movies. There are a lot of special effects and advanced technologies incorporated to make such visions come to life on screen.

Hollywood: Inception

Bollywood: Ra.One

4. Romance

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To describe the romantic genre in a few words: Love is in the air. Romantic movies have love as their core element, the heart of their stories. Such movies usually portray the profoundness of love and sacrifice. The strength of the emotion of love is expressed throughout the storytelling. After all, the creation of the world is due to the power of love and it is the only thing that will be prevailing until its very end.

Hollywood: La La Land

Bollywood: Veer Zaara

5. Romcom

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Romcom or Romantic Comedy is like the best of both worlds. This genre of movies has a perfect blend of romance as well as comedy. In other words, a complete entertainment package! These movies are especially a rage among teenagers or youngsters in general. Offering the right balance of love and laughter is what works for this genre extremely well.

Hollywood: When Harry Met Sally

Bollywood: Chennai Express

6. Action

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Action movies have action as the core element. These have a lot of stunts, battles, chase sequences and stuff like that. There is the usual storytelling, but action remains to be a dominant component throughout it. The action sequences are usually between two opposing powers, or the antagonist and the protagonist.

Hollywood: Mission: Impossible

Bollywood: War

7. Horror

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The horror genre can have two distinct sets of audiences. One set finds horror movies fascinating, while the other considers it as an invitation to sleepless nights thereafter. Horror movies revolve around spirits, ghosts, witches, haunted places, paranormal activity and all the spooky stuff one can think of. This genre offers interesting, mysterious storylines as well. 

Hollywood: Paranormal Activity

Bollywood: 13B: Fear Has a New Address

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8. Superhero

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This genre doesn’t even need an introduction. Superheroes are characters that have been there for us ever since we were children. The concept of superheroes began from comics, coming towards cartoon shows and eventually to the movies as well. In today’s times, action-adventure driven superhero movies are hugely successful blockbusters. Superheroes have very loyal fan bases as well.

Hollywood: The Avengers

Bollywood: Krissh

9. Thriller

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Thriller movies are full of intensity and excitement. These movies let the audience be constantly alert and feel intrigued by their high energy sequences and storyline. There’s suspense, intensity revolving around the stories that are usually based on some mystery, mission, crime or escape. Many movies have thriller as their subgenre. 

Hollywood: I am Legend

Bollywood: Kahaani

10. Mystery

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The mystery genre is as interesting as it sounds. The suspense element is what helps build a solid storyline. Entertainment is almost guaranteed through the curiosity and excitement about various revelations. Just like mystery books, mystery movies have huge fans as the adrenaline rush felt is almost indescribable. 

Hollywood: Shutter Island

Bollywood: Bhool Bhulaiyaa

11. Adventure

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Adventure is usually not a solo genre, as it is combined with action or some other genre. It is more about the quests and explorations of the protagonist(s). The audience can relate to the storytelling, as it feels like a journey to them as well. Such movies are quite a treat to watch.

Hollywood: Cast Away

Bollywood: Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara

12. Biopic

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Biopic is a term coined from the words ‘biography’ and ‘pictures.’ The word biography refers to an account of an important or successful individual or a group of people’s past or present lives. The biopic is a genre that depicts biographies by portraying their respective life stories in a dramatic way. Such movies are usually quite inspirational, as they’re based on real-life struggles or successes.

Hollywood: The Social Network

Bollywood: Sanju

13. Fantasy

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The genre fantasy is all about escaping reality. There are stories that are weaved into an imaginary universe. There are vivid dreams, nightmares, and everything out of the box. Such movies can actually be termed as a writer’s paradise, as they get the liberty to try out different styles and express creative explosions. The creators get to paint the pictures of their imagination into life through this genre.

Hollywood: Harry Potter Series

Bollywood: Paheli

14. Animation

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Animation or animé is much grander than it is sometimes perceived to be. Although animation is fictional in nature, it is usually far more appealing than reality. Animated movies aren’t just for kids who enjoy cartoons. There has always been depth in their characters and storylines, apart from the fun element.

Hollywood: The Incredibles

Bollywood: Alibaba and the Forty Thieves

15. Crime

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Crime based movies revolve around criminal activities. These could involve murder mysteries, courtroom dramas or spy characters. There is a whole lot of variation offered in such movies. Be it the type of crime, the drama around it, the investigations or the overall storytelling. This genre has been quite popular for a very long time.

Hollywood: Zodiac

Bollywood: Special 26

These are the Top 15 movie genres and their meanings. Most movies are not limited to just one specific genre. There is a fine blend of different sorts of genres in order to create amazing movie experiences.

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Penaaz Valecha
Penaaz Valecha
Penaaz is a freelance content writer and social media enthusiast, based in Mumbai. She is a fan of all things aesthetic & creative, good movies and great food. She also enjoys travelling and exploring different places. Her love for French Fries, Shah Rukh Khan and the English language is sacred. Monotony doesn't work for her and she is super passionate about becoming her best version!

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