film Short Films to Watch if You Can't Afford to Go to the Movies  

Jacob Shelton
253 votes 202 voters 13.6k views 25 items

List Rules Any film that is not long enough to be a feature film. Can be any genre except documentary. All films should be watchable on YouTube.

Have you been to the movies lately? Even if you’re attending a matinee, you can still end up shelling out about thirty bucks just to watch one movie. If you’re running low on funds but you still want to be entertained, do yourself a favor and watch a few short films online. It’s almost like going to the movies, but without having to park or endure the long lines at the concession stand. Nothing can replace the experience of sitting in a dark theater and watching a great film, but if you don’t feel like spending half your paycheck on a movie that might be just okay, watch a few of these short films that have been especially vetted for you. They’re perfect for an evening when you can’t afford to go to the theater.

This list of the best short films on YouTube covers everything from low budget science fiction to late '50s French cinema, and even some animation. After watching all the way through this best short film list you can consider yourself a bonafide film buff. If you’re on the fence about the pint-sized movies on this list, just remember that most of your favorite directors started out in short film. YouTube is the perfect place to house these miniscule movies. You can even create a playlist and watch them one after another. So pop some popcorn, turn down the lights and enjoy all of these short films to watch if you can’t afford to go to the movies.
25 14


Ranker Video
Video: YouTube
Rose McGowan's directorial debut is a gut punch of a film about femininity, growing up, and the dark undercurrent that runs parallel to suburban America. 
13 5

Gregory Go Boom

Ranker Video
Video: YouTube
This short is worth watching just to see Michael Cera play something other than a nebbish mumbly mouthed loser. This movie goes from zero to WTF in about five seconds, and it's not for the faint of heart.
11 4

I'm You, Dickhead

Ranker Video
Video: YouTube
Time travel isn't for everybody. And as much as everyone says they'd go back to kill Hitler, we all know that most of the human race would use the burgeoning technology for their own gain. See how it works out for Larry in this cheeky short film.
14 7


Ranker Video
Video: YouTube
Don Hertzfeldt's cult classic animated short blends reality and fiction with his quirky doodles. You'll laugh, you'll cringe, and you'll probably start quoting this film constantly. 
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