10 Long Anime Movies That Fly By – CBR – Comic Book Resources

While most anime movies are rather short, some are long enough to rival the longest Hollywood movies and are so engaging they go by quickly.
From exciting action spectacles to heartfelt, touching dramas, the world of anime movies is vast and diverse, capable of pleasing any viewer. Watching a movie instead of starting a new series, which might take days, if not weeks, to complete, is an incredible, entertaining option to spend an evening.
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While most anime films are relatively short, often staying within the 100-minute timeframe, some can take hours to finish, rivaling some short TV shows in length. Nevertheless, a truly captivating movie makes time seem irrelevant, no matter how long its runtime is. They take the audience on an immersive adventure, making the viewer forget about reality. These anime films might be a significant time commitment, yet their stories are engaging enough to make time fly by.
While not Studio Ghibli's longest film, with both Princess Mononoke and The Tale of the Princess Kaguya surpassing its runtime, The Wind Rises still hits the 2-hour mark, making it a significant time commitment. Unlike most Hayao Miyazaki works, this movie is a grounded and realistic story, narrating the fictional biography of a real-life aircraft designer Jiro Horikoshi.
The movie's premise might not seem that amusing. However, The Wind Rises might be the most earnest and heartfelt movie by the famed Ghibli director. Watching it is a thought-provoking emotional journey that flies by rapidly.
The cult-classic cyberpunk anime film Akira was released over 25 years ago. Nevertheless, it remains one of the best and most influential anime movies. In just over 2 hours, Akira redefined the whole anime world.
With a budget of over 8 million dollars, Akira's creators put their best efforts forward to make the movie look and feel as thrilling as possible. Every single frame in the film was hand-drawn by a talented team of animators. As a result, the movie flows vigorously, not letting the audience drop their guard for even a second.
Few anime films have as much heart as the 2016 Kyoto Animation feature, A Silent Voice. Following the tear-jerking reconciliation between a deaf girl Shoko Nishimiya and her elementary school bully Shoya Ishida, the film brings a lot of important taboo topics to the limelight, exploring such heavy themes as mental health struggles, disability, and childhood cruelty.
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Despite being 130 minutes long, which is quite impressive for an animated feature, A Silent Voice uses its time wisely, giving every topic and character time to develop.
Hideaki Anno's final goodbye to the Evangelion series premiered in 2021 and surpassed the runtime of every previous installment in the franchise. With an impressive runtime of 155 minutes, Evangelion: 3.0+1.0 Thrice Upon a Time concludes the series after eight long years in production.
While developing the movie was a huge struggle for the entire creative team, it turned out to be a magnificent, melancholic farewell to Shinji Ikari's iconic story. As the most powerful finale in anime history, 3.0+1.0 was worth the excruciating wait.
Kyoto Animation is notorious for its mesmerizing visual style and incredible animation quality. Even the Violet Evergarden TV series can compare to some of the most elegant and stunning anime films.
Given the much higher budget and 140-minute runtime of a full-blown feature-length spectacle, the 2020 Violet Evergarden: The Movie concludes the story of the anime series with the same narrative quality the audience came to expect from the franchise. This gorgeous tearjerker brings an end to Violet's journey as a Memory Doll, letting the heroine finally find her peace.
Welcome to the Space Show, a lighthearted and amusing science fiction anime feature from 2010, tells the story of five elementary school kids on their quest across the galaxy. After rescuing an alien dog, the children get involved in an intergalactic conflict, putting the fate of the whole universe in their hands.
In 2 hours and 16 minutes, Welcome to the Space Show takes the audience back to their childhood, creating a wonderfully immersive atmosphere of wonder and exploration. This movie celebrates everything that makes kids' anime great while being equally fun for older audiences.
In terms of runtime, watching the entirety of The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya can be compared to finishing the infamous Endless Eight arc from the original show. However, the continuation movie of The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya is nowhere near as excruciating.
The entire 2 hours and 42 minutes of the film keep the audience on the edge of their seats, combining the series' original humor and fun science fiction elements with a movie-exclusive thrilling mystery plotline. To this day, The Disappearance is often regarded as Kyoto Animation's most impressive work.
Studio Ghibli's longest animated feature, The Tale of the Princess Kaguya, was the last film directed by Isao Takahata, the co-founder of the world-famous animation house. Based on a 10th-century Japanese folk story, The Tale of the Bamboo Cutter, the movie captures the magical feeling of fairytales with its elegant watercolor visuals.
The 137-minute-long feature was nominated for the Best Animated Feature Academy Award and won 7 critically acclaimed film awards worldwide, with over 20 total nominations, proving the astounding quality of this animated masterpiece.
The second-longest animated film in history, the extended 70mm cut of the 1984 Final Yamato, is the fifth installment in the Space Battleship Yamato saga, the official continuation of the 1974 TV series.
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Despite being an older movie, this science fiction classic still holds up, highlighting the aesthetic charm and mastery of 1980s cel animation. Despite holding the title of the longest animated film in the world for 36 years, Final Yamato flies in one breath, proving that older anime classics can be as entertaining as newer digital films.
The original cut of Sunao Katabuchi's World War II masterpiece, In This Corner of the World, was a lengthy film to begin with, taking 129 minutes to complete. Yet, the movie's extended version, which came out in 2019, three years after the film's original release, made this feature earn the world's record for the longest animated movie ever created.
With additional 30 minutes of intricate character development, In This Corner (and Other Corners) of the World made it to 168 minutes. Yet, the movie manages to hold the audience's attention every second of its almost 3-hour run, showcasing some of the most devastating and realistic war imagery in film history.
Maria Remizova is a writer, reader, filmmaker, and media analyst based in Los Angeles, US. After working as a journalist for a major television network in Russia, she moved to the United States to study filmmaking. A graduate of Full Sail University’s Film program, she now writes for CBR’s Anime Lists and works as a screenplay analyst. From childhood, Maria was enthusiastic about Japanese media and culture and has watched over 2500 anime in her lifetime. Her favorite flavor of ice cream is coffee.
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