10 Best Feature Films Under An Hour

Life is busy, and for many it feels like it never really slows down. Everyday people have a lot to do and maybe even more to think about, which can make the thought of watching a long movie daunting. Of course, some of the best (and most popular) movies of all time are also very long, but you really have to give them a lot of attention to appreciate them properly. Sometimes a real epic can take up most of an afternoon or an entire evening.

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For those times when you don’t have time to watch something long, there are thankfully a host of shorter films that are still considered feature films rather than shorts. Films can still be feature films if they are 40 minutes long, by some definitions, with anything shorter being a short film. With that set, the next 10 movies all exceed that length while still being under 60 minutes, which is great if you want to watch a movie but can only save time for something bite-sized.

“Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special” (2022)

The second MCU “TV special” of 2022, Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special straddles a strange line between the TV episode and the movie. However, it’s not really a TV episode, as it’s its own isolated story, and it’s not a true theatrical movie, given that it’s about a third the length of a standard MCU movie. , and that it was released directly on Disney+.

However you want to define it, at just 44 minutes, it’s short, snappy, and offers a great low-stakes adventure for Guardians of the Galaxy before Flight. 3 release, which is slated for 2023. It serves as an entertaining reminder of why these characters are so beloved, and should satisfy Marvel fans and Christmas movie fans alike.

“The Great Ecstasy of Woodcarver Steiner” (1974)

Werner Herzog is a filmmaker specializing in making documentaries about unusual subjects and covering them in his iconic and idiosyncratic style. Even the titles of his films sometimes suggest offbeat things: take his 44-minute sports documentary The great ecstasy of woodcarver Steinerfor example.

It is a film that explores the state of mind of an acrobat, as well as his job when he is not in competition: that of carpenter. Herzog seeks to understand what drives people to take up such a death-defying sport, and completes it with plenty of awesome footage of ski pilots in action…as well as a heartbreaking slow-motion scene of an accident that highlights his danger, which ends up being an image impossible to forget.

“The Call of Cthulhu” (2005)

Once the advent of sound in motion pictures in 1927 shook up the film industry, very few filmmakers looked back to recapture the era of silence. This makes any attempt to capture this style of cinema all the more remarkable, and the low-budget sci-fi/horror film Call of Cthulhufrom 2005, is one of the most intriguing of these post-1927 silent films.

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The presentation and lack of dialogue add tremendously to the atmosphere and mystery of the film, with its story about a young man discovering a cult around the mythical monster, Cthulhu. It also adheres to silent film conventions by being fairly short – as many pre-dialogue feature films were – like Call of Cthulhu clocks only 47 minutes in length.

“Simon of the Desert” (1965)

Louis Bunuel was a filmmaker who might be best known for directing one of the most infamous short films of all time, An Andalusian dog (a collaboration with the famous surrealist painter Salvador Dali). desert simon was made almost 40 years later, and is about twice as long as An Andalusian dogand not as weird…although it’s still very surreal.

desert simon is an offbeat, satirical film about a lonely man in the desert, who finds himself worshiped by a strange group of followers while continually battling the temptations of the devil. He has a lot to say about faith, spirituality and the people we as a human race choose to idolize, and oddly enough his influence can be felt in something like Life of Brian from Monty Pythonwhich tackles similar themes in a (slightly) less surreal way.

‘Electric Dragon 80,000 V’ (2001)

Electric Dragon 80,000 V lives up to its quirky title by being an absolutely savage movie. It’s only 55 minutes long, but it’s such an assault on the senses and so quick that if it were longer it would probably just become too much to handle.

The film focuses on an epic battle between a superhero and a supervillain. One is a guitar-playing boxer who gains insane powers through electricity, while the other is a half-wizard, half-metal Buddha statue who also gains powers through electric currents. They rush around Tokyo and fight for 55 minutes. It’s amazing, although it’s probably not for everyone.

“Night Werewolf” (2022)

Whereas Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special will attract the most attention at the end of 2022 (thanks to the Christmas theme), night werewolf was a similar MCU entry and its release date coincided with Halloween. It’s only a little longer than the Guardians special, clocked in at a very brief 55 minutes, and is notable for being the MCU’s most horrifying entry so far.

The short length makes the movie feel like it’s almost over before it starts, but what’s there is still quite entertaining. It focuses on a deadly competition held on the grounds of a remote mansion and what happens when a werewolf transformation suddenly shakes up the proceedings. If this and the Guardians Special though, it’s likely that we’ll see more MCU sub-hour promos in the future.

“The Unknown” (1927)

the unknown is a 50-minute silent horror film about a criminal on the run who decides to disguise himself as a circus performer to escape their pursuit. There, he falls in love with the ringmaster’s daughter and goes to great lengths to try to get closer to her.

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Released in 1927, when films were transitioning from silent to sound, this is one of the last great horror films of the silent era. His story and some of his images still pack a punch, and the iconic silent film star’s lead performance Lon Chaney for the criminal on the run is suitably unsettling and brilliantly done.

‘Forgotten Money’ (1995)

A mockumentary made for television that lasts just under an hour, Forgot money replicated the style of a television documentary so convincingly that it fooled many viewers in New Zealand when it first aired on television. It documents the life and career of Colin McKenzie, a completely fictionalized man who, according to the mockumentary, revolutionized cinema in the early 20th century.

It was a film co-directed by peter jacksona few years before he made his big break with The Lord of the Rings trilogy. Although a much lower budget affair, there are still enough compelling special effects and camera tricks to make the “old” footage featured in the mockumentary look authentic, which convinced viewers in 1995 that they were seeing a real documentary.

“The War Game” (1966)

before the havoc Son from 1984, The war game took an equally devastating look at the impact nuclear war would have on British citizens. It was shocking enough to be truly controversial in 1966, as it’s presented in the style of a documentary, which makes the scenes depicting the aftermath of nuclear devastation all the more gruesome.

It’s all the more impressive that it can be so comprehensive and hard-hitting while only lasting 48 minutes. For a more detailed (and even more powerful) insight into the impact of a hypothetical nuclear war, Son also worth a look (however, looking The war game and Son back to back is not recommended – that would be too heavy a double line).

“Let there be light” (1946)

Let there be light is a surprisingly heartfelt documentary made in the aftermath of World War II. It focuses on the psychological distress felt by many American soldiers after returning from combat overseas and shows the steps taken by psychologists in an attempt to heal the emotional scars of war.

It’s a short and somewhat dry, but important film, worth being a historical document of how the survivors of World War II felt shortly after its conclusion. The story behind the film’s release is also interesting. It was so candid that the US Army suppressed its release until the 1980s, fearing that such a film would be too upsetting in 1946, and not contribute enough to post-war recovery.

NEXT: Great Movies That Are Longer Than Three Hours

10 Best Feature Films Under An Hour – GameSpot