Best Movies Under 90 Minutes Long

September 7, 2022 | Benjamin Carpenter

Many people believe that the best movies are longer because they have more time to develop complex characters and storylines. However, some of the best movies have actually clocked in at 90 minutes or under. These movies are able to take audiences on a roller coaster of emotions in a short amount of time, usually leaving them wanting more.

Other times the films can create a fulfilling experience without having you sit through a three-hour runtime. If you are looking for a film that will leave a lasting impression but won’t take up your entire day, check out some of the best movies under 90 minutes.


Good Movies Under 90 Minutes

10. Phone Booth

This film takes place largely in a phone booth where Colin Farrel or Stu spends his time trying to save his own life. Phone Booth was an incredibly suspenseful movie with some amazing acting by Colin Farrell. The script was also very tight, keeping the audience engaged from start to finish.

After answering a phone call, a dishonest and arrogant N.Y. publicist finds himself trapped in a phone booth and being held hostage by a mysterious but dangerous blackmailer sniper, who demands him to admit his dishonest attitudes with his wife and with the people of his day-to-day life.


9. Chronicle

Chronicle combines the traditional superhero origin story with the found footage genre to create something unique. The unsettling feeling of not knowing what will happen next is what makes Chronicle so captivating.

Three high school students make an incredible discovery, leading to their developing uncanny powers beyond their understanding. As they learn to control their abilities and use them to their advantage, their lives start to spin out of control, and their darker sides begin to take over.


8. Shiva Baby

Shiva Baby is a smart comedy with sharp humor and an impressive performance by Rachel Sennott in the lead role. The film has a unique premise and keeps the audience engaged all-throughout.

College student Danielle is faced with a series of awkward encounters at a day-long shiva, a Jewish gathering during a time of mourning. Amongst overbearing relatives, she is rattled by the appearance of an ex-girlfriend and of her secret sugar daddy, who unexpectedly arrives with his wife and baby.


7. Zombieland

Zombieland takes a different approach to the zombie genre, incorporating humor and heart into the mix. The result is an incredibly fun and entertaining film that allows audiences to to become immersed into a new zombie world.

The horror comedy Zombieland focuses on two men who have found a way to survive a world ruled by zombies. Columbus is a big wuss — but when you’re afraid of being eaten by zombies, fear can keep you alive. Tallahassee is an AK-toting, zombie-slaying’ bad ass whose single determination is to get the last Twinkie on earth. As they join forces with Wichita and Little Rock, who have also found unique ways to survive the zombie mayhem, they will have to determine which is worse: relying on each other or succumbing to the zombies.


6. Paprika

Paprika takes advantage of the animation medium with its surreal visuals and dream-like sequences. The animation is a masterpiece that allows the viewers to explore a variety of interesting concepts and ideas.

Dr. Atsuko Chiba works as a scientist by day and, under the code name “Paprika,” is a dream detective at night. Atsuko and her colleagues are working on a device called the DC Mini, which is intended to help psychiatric patients, but in the wrong hands it could destroy people’s minds. When a prototype is stolen, Atsuko/Paprika springs into action to recover it before damage is done.


5. Primer

Primer clocks in at 77 minutes and still manages to be one of the most complex films ever made with a mind-bending time travel premise. The film is incredibly ambitious and well-executed.

Four friends/fledgling entrepreneurs, knowing that there’s something bigger and more innovative than the different error-checking devices they’ve built, wrestle over their new invention.


4. Cloverfield

A found footage film makes our list again with a mix of horror and science fiction. Cloverfield is an intense ride that feels like Godzilla meets The Blair Witch Project.

As a group of New Yorkers (Michael Stahl-David, Mike Vogel, Odette Yustman) enjoy a going-away party, little do they know that they will soon face the most terrifying night of their lives. A creature the size of a skyscraper descends upon the city, leaving death and destruction in its wake. Using a handheld video camera, the friends record their struggle to survive as New York crumbles around them.


3. Gravity

A space movie with two characters may not sound entertaining to watch but Gravity is an exception. The film is an exhilarating ride that will make you appreciate your time on Earth. Alfonso Cuaron directed the film and puts a lot of effort into the VFX and cinematography.

Dr. Ryan Stone is a brilliant medical engineer on her first shuttle mission, with veteran astronaut Matt Kowalski in command of his last flight before retiring. But on a seemingly routine spacewalk, disaster strikes. The shuttle is destroyed, leaving Stone and Kowalsky completely alone – tethered to nothing but each other and spiraling out into the blackness.


2. Run Lola Run

This German experimental film tells a nonlinear story of a young woman’s race against time. The action-packed film has a lot of unique energy and an incredibly unorthodox story. Run Lola Run is a mixture of many genres that come together to create an unforgettable experience.

Lola receives a phone call from her boyfriend Manni. He lost 100,000 DM in a subway train that belongs to a very bad guy. Lola has 20 min to raise this amount and meet Manni. Otherwise, he will rob a store to get the money. Three different alternatives may happen depending on some minor event along Lola’s run.


1. Stand By Me

Stand By Me is heartfelt, nostalgic, fun, and adventurous all at the same time. The story is based on Stephen King’s novel The Body and captures the spirit of a coming of age movie. The child actors all give compelling performances.

It’s the summer of 1959 in Castlerock, Oregon and four 12 year-old boys – Gordie, Chris, Teddy and Vern – are fast friends. After learning of the general location of the body of a local boy who has been missing for several days, they set off into the woods to see it. Along the way, they learn about themselves, the meaning of friendship and the need to stand up for what is right.


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