Hollywood movies typically run about 1.5 to 2 hours. The patented three act structure unfolds onscreen and the credits roll before backs begin to ache and minds begin to wonder. But sometimes two hours is not enough and this list has them all. These are the best movies that are super long.
All the films on this list run at least 2 hours and 20 minutes. Most of them are even longer than that and some of them are twice as long as the average movie. Why would a filmmaker keep someone glued to the screen for over three hours with a really long movie? Not every great movie is packaged with a simple beginning, middle, and an end. Epic stories need to percolate and their characters need more room to develop.
Imagine The Godfather without the legendary opening wedding scene. That sequence alone lasts over thirty minutes, and it has very little to do with moving the story forward. Instead, it’s basically thirty minutes of director Francis Ford Coppola introducing the audience to the Corleone family.
Several films on this list run over three hours. Think that’s too long? Check out their Rotten Tomatoes scores - every single one of them received an outstanding rating. When a person sees Schindler’s List or Lawrence of Arabia for the first time, they do not walk away from the experience worried that they’ve spent too long looking at a movie screen. Sure, some movies with long running times could afford a clip or two in the editing room. But you won’t find any of those movies on this list.These good films warrant and demand your full attention, no matter how long they are. Be sure to upvote for your favorite long movies to watch, those with an epic runtime.
Running Time: 2 hr. 45 min.Rotten Tomatoes Score: 88% Django Unchained is a 2012 American revisionist Western film directed by Quentin Tarantino. With the help of a German bounty hunter (Christoph Waltz), a freed slave (Jamie Foxx) sets out to ...more
Running Time: 3 hr. 42 min.
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 87%Ben Hur is a 2003 animated film based on the novel Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ, by Lew Wallace. It is the fourth film adaptation of the novel. Charlton Heston's production company, Agamemnon ...more
Running Time: 2 hr. 42 min.Rotten Tomatoes Score: 83%
Avatar is a 2009 American epic science fiction film written and directed by James Cameron, and starring Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, Stephen Lang, Michelle Rodriguez, Joel David Moore, Giovanni ...more
Running Time: 2 hr. 23 min.
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 79%Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl is a 2003 American fantasy swashbuckler film based on the Pirates of the Caribbean ride at Disney theme parks. It was directed by Gore ...more
Running Time: 3 hr. 36 min.Rotten Tomatoes Score: 99% Lawrence of Arabia is a 1962 British epic adventure drama film based on the life of T. E. Lawrence. It was directed by David Lean and produced by Sam Spiegel. The film stars Peter O'Toole in the ...more
Running Time: 2 hr. 59 min.Rotten Tomatoes Score: 77% The Wolf of Wall Street is a 2013 American biographical black comedy film directed by Martin Scorsese. The screenplay by Terence Winter is adapted from the eponymous memoir by Jordan Belfort and ...more
Running Time: 2 hr. 41 min.
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 95%The Bridge on the River Kwai is a 1957 WWII epic film directed by David Lean, based on the novel Le Pont de la Rivière Kwai by Pierre Boulle. The film is a work of fiction but borrows the ...more
Running Time: 3 hr. 9 min.Rotten Tomatoes Score: 85% JFK is a 1991 American historical legal-conspiracy thriller film directed by Oliver Stone. It examines the events leading to the assassination of President John F. Kennedy and subsequent ...more
Running Time: 3 hr. 3 min.Rotten Tomatoes Score: 93%
The Deer Hunter is a 1978 American epic drama film co-written and directed by Michael Cimino about a trio of Russian American steelworkers and their service in Vietnam. The film stars Robert De ...more
Running Time: 2 hr. 51 min.Rotten Tomatoes Score: 86% Heat is a 1995 American crime thriller film written, produced and directed by Michael Mann, and starring Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, and Val Kilmer. The film was released in the United States on ...more
Running Time: 3 hr. 13 min.
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 82%Doctor Zhivago is a British-American 1965 epic dramaromance film directed by David Lean, starring Omar Sharif and Julie Christie. It is set in Russia between the years prior to WWI, and is ...more
Running Time: 2 hr. 35 min.Rotten Tomatoes Score: 92% Boogie Nights is a 1997 American drama film written and directed by Paul Thomas Anderson. It is set in Los Angeles' San Fernando Valley and focuses on a young nightclub dishwasher, Eddie Adams, ...more
Running Time: 2 hr. 38 min.Rotten Tomatoes Score: 91% There Will Be Blood is a 2007 American epic drama film written and directed by Paul Thomas Anderson and starring Daniel Day-Lewis and Paul Dano. The film was inspired by Upton Sinclair's novel ...more
Running Time: 2 hr. 24 min.Rotten Tomatoes Score: 89% Once Upon a Time in America is a 1984 Italian epic drama film co-written and directed by Sergio Leone and starring Robert De Niro and James Woods. It chronicles the lives of Jewish ghetto youths ...more
Running Time: 2 hr. 43 min.
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 64%Watchmen is a 2009 American neo-noir superhero film directed by Zack Snyder and starring Malin Åkerman, Billy Crudup, Matthew Goode, Jackie Earle Haley, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, and Patrick ...more
Running Time: 2 hr. 28 min.Rotten Tomatoes Score: 96% The Pianist is a 2002 historical drama film co-produced and directed by Roman Polanski, scripted by Ronald Harwood, and starring Adrien Brody. It is based on the autobiographical book The ...more
Running Time: 2 hr. 45 min.
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 92%Once Upon a Time in Hollywood is a 2019 crime thriller film directed by Quentin Tarantino. A TV actor (Leonardo DiCaprio) and his stunt double (Brad Pitt) embark on an odyssey to make a name for ...more
Running Time: 4 hr. 31 min.
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 80%Gettysburg is a 1993 epic film written and directed by Ronald F. Maxwell, adapted from the novel The Killer Angels by Michael Shaara, about the Battle of Gettysburg. The film starred Tom ...more
Running Time: 2 hr. 53 min.Rotten Tomatoes Score: 93% The Great Escape is a 1963 American WWII epic film based on an escape by British and Commonwealth POW from a German POW camp during WWII, starring Steve McQueen, James Garner, and Richard ...more
Running Time: 3 hr. 4 min.
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 96%Spartacus is a 1960 American epic historical drama film directed by Stanley Kubrick. The screenplay by Dalton Trumbo was based on the novel Spartacus by Howard Fast. It was inspired by the life ...more
Running Time: 2 hr. 36 min.
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 85%Avengers: Infinity War is a 2018 American superhero film directed by Anthony and Joe Russo. Torn apart after the events of Captain America: Civil War, the Avengers join forces with the Guardians ...more
Running Time: 3 hr. 1 min.
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 96%Avengers: Endgame is a 2019 American superhero film directed by Anthony and Joe Russo, based on the Marvel Comics superhero team, and the sequel to Avengers: Infinity War. After Thanos (Josh ...more
Running Time: 2 hr. 55 min.
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 71%Around the World in 80 Days is a 1956 Technicolor epic action adventure comedy film starring David Niven and Cantinflas, produced by the Michael Todd Company and released by United Artists. The ...more
Running Time: 3 hr. 13 min.
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 98%The Right Stuff is a 1983 American drama film that was adapted from Tom Wolfe's best-selling 1979 book of the same name about the Navy, Marine and Air Force test pilots who were involved in ...more
Running Time: 2 hr. 58 min.
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 90%Judgment at Nuremberg is a 1961 American drama film dealing with the Holocaust and with the post-WWII geo-political complexity of the Nuremberg Trials. The picture was written by Abby Mann and ...more