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"I was staring at a shot of an open field for a full minute before I realized the movie locked up. I thought it was another long shot."

Sometimes a single shot goes on for a very, very long time. Though this is usually a bad thing when done to stretch the film and/or its budget, it can also be done deliberately for artistic reasons, such as showcasing particularly good-looking visuals, establishing more lifelike pacing, for the purposes of extending a joke, or increasing tension (because Nothing Is Scarier). It can also serve as a thematic device: For example, a director might illustrate the lonely and mundane life of a solo astronaut by showing him going about his daily routine, never speaking a word because there's nobody to talk to.

Often used in conjunction with Scenery Porn. A tactic occasionally employed for the Bottle Episode. See also Padding and The Oner. Compare Overly-Long Gag. Contrast with Is This Thing Still On?, which is done accidentally.


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  • This campaign advertisement for Mike Gravel, in which, to quote Jon Stewart: "the message is not 'vote for Gravel' as much as 'seven days after watching this video, you are going to die.'" In the video, Gravel stares at the camera for several minutes and then walks away after tossing a rock into a lake. A second video shows Gravel stoking a campfire and then the camera focuses on the fire for several minutes.
  • A certain Cartoon Network commercial involves Mandy boarding a train and sitting beside Raven. The scene goes on a little while without either of them doing anything aside from occasionally looking at each other via glancing sideways. Finally, Mandy gets up to leave and remarks "nice chatting with you." Raven responds "Whatever."
  • Norwegian potato chip company Totenflak's "Laga med tålmodighet" features a six-minute shot of a chip slowly being cooked and then put into the bag. Yes, they once showed the whole thing on TV.
  • When Wawa added pizza to their dinner menu, they ran this internet advertisement, which simply consists of a slow-motion shot of someone taking a slice of cheese pizza out of the box as the narrator initially states matter-of-fact that Wawa has pizza, then between lulls of silence, has to describe the pizza in detail, until he ends up struggling to come up another reason to try it.
    "MORE? Uhm... they're round. Which... is a cool shape."

    Anime and Manga 

  • Neon Genesis Evangelion uses these frequently, due to losing most of its animation budget in the second half of its run and having roughly pocket change left after the action sequences were done. However, to the credit of the creators, and considering the show's decided fight against the human condition, these moments amount to a clever, clear, and precise presentation of the characters. These moments include:
    • Misato watching the train Shinji has apparently boarded leave the station.
    • The elevator ride with Rei and Asuka. The Director's Cut version at least mixes it a little bit up. That is to say, Asuka moves briefly and only once. What makes the scene especially unsettling is that Rei never blinks. The same shot is re-used in Evangelion: 2.0, but for a much shorter amount of time (making its inclusion a bit of a joke for fans).
    • Misato being questioned by SEELE after Leliel's defeat: the longest still shot in the series at 80 seconds. There's actually some informative dialogue between them though, making this scene a little more bearable than the silent ones.
    • Shinji holding Kaworu in Unit 01's hand for one full minute before he crushes him.
    • Asuka curled up in Unit 02 at the bottom of the lake in The End of Evangelion, except this one was deliberate to create a very tense buildup to Asuka's epiphany and recovery.
    • Misato and Shinji's Last Kiss.
    • In one of the last episodes, there's a shot of the wall outside the room Misato and Kaji are in, which goes on for at least a minute. The sound-effects are nothing less than the sounds of Misato and Kaji having sex. Somehow, that's something that has to be censored out, while a fanservice-shot of Asuka who's much younger is apparently okay.
    • Somehow, a live orchestral Eva concert is subject to this. Symphony of EVA, a live concert recording, ends with the track "Thank You," which is for all intents and purposes a huge, 11-minute and 9-second curtain call and improv session. It's interesting at first as the orchestra gets out all the random bits of music they can but then the applause just keeps going... and going... and going... until the track ends on what appears to be the main choirgirls and the conductor casually chatting as the audience meanders out of the venue.
  • The last chronological episode of The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya features a scene of Nagato reading for several minutes, her page turning the only movement. This episode is later referenced by Lucky Star, with Konata getting on her computer after the episode airs and commenting that the flame wars are already starting. It runs for a total of 3 minutes 17 seconds and is broken up about two thirds through by a (similar but shorter) six-second scene with Kyon sitting on a train. The only 'action' in the scene is that a drama club practicing voice exercises in another room can be overheard.
  • Naruto Shippuuden used this for padding out the action sequences in the early episodes where they were still trying to make the events of one chapter last an entire episode. For example, a 30-second slow zoom into someone's eye.
  • Dragon Ball Z is rather notorious for this sort of thing:
    • The fight against Freeza on Planet Namek. Basically, the planet's core had been vaporized and was supposed to blow up in five minutes. Ten episodes and five real time minutes later, the planet finally goes kaput.
    • Parodied in Dragon Ball Z Abridged where Freeza keeps making estimates in the "five minutes" and lower range that never come true until Goku (an even bigger Idiot Hero than in the original) ends up flat out asking Freeza if he knows what a "minute" is.
  • Excel♡Saga's unaired final episode contains a few unnecessarily dragged out shots with little happening in them for comedy. There's one where Excel, who has switched bodies with Hyatt, spends a long time staring at her reflection as she realizes what has happened. There another one where Excel and Hyatt have fused together into one body and Hyatt starts repeating "How exciting" like a Broken Record for quite a while before they realize they don't know how to un-fuse. These moments also help to deliberately pad out the episode's runtime to be too long for a regular time slot.
  • There were loooong periods in Transformers: Armada where nothing happened whatsoever. There were also shorter pauses in conversation where it really didn't make sense. It's far from DBZ class, though.
  • Tohru crying in the last episode of Fruits Basket after she sees Kyo's true form becomes one of these.
  • Though not as bad as other examples, Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind features an extended scene of Nausicaa watching an Ohmu crawl into the distance.
  • At the end of episode 15 of Re:Zero, Subaru is decapitated. The credits then roll over a 90-second static shot of Subaru's headless body kneeling in the snow. The effect is mitigated not just by the credits, but by the snowfall which gradually gets heavier and eventually whites out the screen.
  • The Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt episode "Nothing to Room" consists of a single 13-minute shot with almost no camera movement, broken up only by the occasional Whip Pan to represent time passing.
  • Arrivederci Yamato (aka Farewell Space Battleship Yamato). After the opening narration, there is an extended scene of deep space with a faint ambient sound that gets louder. Barely visible in the early part of this scene is the faint shooting star-like pinpoint of the Comet Empire approaching. It faded in and out periodically so if you blinked, you didn't notice. The White Comet approaches and we are subject to an extended closeup shot of the rotating comet, this time with Bach-like music (the Comet Empire's theme). Final Yamato has one of these at the end. This sort of thing is actually a trademark of director Toshio Masuda who not only directed the Yamato films but has directed live action movies such as Tora! Tora! Tora!.
  • In the finale of Cowboy Bebop, "The Real Folk Blues (Part 2)", the camera does a looooooooong pan up through the sky and up into space, lasting for several minutes.
  • Two notable examples in .hack//SIGN, one with BT and Bear sitting together on a grassy field, the camera looks as though it's pushing in on a still frame, another where the group is talking in the forest and the camera does a Rack Focus to show dew drops fall off the leaves then focuses again.
  • In the 2012 noitaminA anime Black★Rock Shooter, episode 4, Yomi abuses her cellphone and buries her face in her pillow. The shot is held for a full 30 seconds, with the only change being the backlight of her phone turning off. As the only time this was used in the series, it was likely done to help convey how lonely and isolated she felt from everyone else.
  • The anime adaptation of The Flowers of Evil did this a lot, in places where that could be read in a few seconds in the manga. Particularly scenes with a lot of walking, notably episodes 8 and 11. It's possible this happened because the series was trying to stay accurate to the manga, yet end the episodes on cliffhangers, so this was Padding episodes so they could end on said cliffhangers.
  • In Osamu Tezuka's Ayako, Tezuka uses an unusually extended long scene in a comic as contrasted to his montage style.
  • In Kill la Kill, after getting a long lecture on the nature of Life Fibers and the threat to the world, the camera stays on Ryuko for nearly a full minute as she digests the information. Next to her, Mako repeatedly dozes off only to barely catch herself.
  • In the Garden of sinners, there is a very long scene of Shiki (with one arm) eating ice cream that takes about a minute and a half. It's intended to be symbolic and a Pet the Dog scene about Shiki and Mikiya's relationship.
  • Queen Millennia: Quite common in the movie, where the opening scene is a pan over a star field that runs very long with almost nothing happening.

    Comic Books 

    Fan Works 
  • This is one of the common criticisms of the My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic fan animation Double Rainboom. It was made as an animation project for an art school, with a required 30-minute running time, while the initial script had been written to be only 22 minutes long. In an effort to make up the runtime, this trope results. Numerous shots linger on their subjects long after the action is done. A good example is an early shot of Twilight mixing potion ingredients that goes on for half a minute without anything actually happening.
  • My Little Portal has a similar tendency to linger on static shots, even in the middle of action sequences.
  • Incendiary's "Edith: Eyes of the Parish" lasts eight minutes, about five of them being shots of Edith looking over the Womb on top of the Cathedral, with a few scenes in between. A version of the video would be uploaded in which these scenes were sped past, Hand Waved as an "I'm Excited!" pill.

    Film — Animation 
  • In The Incredibles, the entire scene where Bob is blow-drying the books and invents the lie to Helen about going to a company conference consists of a single shot which does nothing but very slowly zoom in on Bob.

  • Fictional example: in Moving Pictures, CMOT Dibbler gets the idea to put subliminal advertising into the film. However, instead of using only one frame of a plate of spare ribs, he uses a five-minute-long static shot of the plate of spare ribs, thinking that its effectiveness would be proportional to the length of time it was shown. It never gets shown, because Soll Dibbler finds it and cuts it out.
  • House of Leaves describes one. When Holloway dies on page 337, he's left bleeding and suffering for two minutes and twenty-eight seconds until he dies. And then the camera is left on for 46 seconds, watching his dead body in the darkness. Then all of a sudden, the darkness bursts out and literally absorbs him, along with a large and terrible roar.
  • You Look Different in Real Life: In the documentary Five at Six, Justine develops stomach cramps that turn out to be psychosomatic. Tests at the hospital find nothing wrong with her. During the scene where the doctor discusses the results with her parents, the camera stays on Justine the entire time while she colors in bed, slowly filling a whole page with orange crayon.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Let's Make a Deal: Quickie deals were shown following the closing credits, always with traders who had been picked over during the regular game. A typical example: "I'll give up $25 for every dime you find in your purse!" The end credits would end with the host continuing to make "deals."
  • On a season 5 episode of Pee-wee's Playhouse, Pee-wee shows kids how to feed a dog. Pee-wee opens a can of dog food, puts it in a bowl, and the dog eats THE ENTIRE BOWL OF DOG FOOD. All in one shot.
  • Monty Python's Flying Circus: once when an episode "ran short," they showed a section of beach with the tide coming in. After a while, John Cleese stepped into frame wearing a Roman battle costume, explained that they had run short, and assured the viewer there was nothing more. He left and the camera continued to show the beach for another minute or so, then slowly faded to black. It was, at least, quite pretty. Since this scene occurs right after the bloody comic violence of the "Sam Peckinpah's Salad Days" sketch and "Philip Jenkinson" getting machine-gunned to death in slow motion, it could be seen as a deliberate use of Relax-o-Vision.
  • The Bill commonly used it in the very early days, when a typical scene could go on for anything up to five whole minutes without a single edit or insert, with the camera simply following the actors around the sets/locations in a single take. Although this helped to portray the series in a very realistic way, it became less common as the years went on, though it will sometimes still be done for stylistic effect in a scene or two (notably used in the final scene of the series).
  • The Trigger Happy TV season 1 DVD special features end with Dom Joly sitting in an arm chair announcing a "Special Bonus Minute" of footage. He proceeds to sit there motionless for an exact minute, after which the screen fades to black.
  • The first episode of Mega64 opens with Derek eating a can of yogurt for three minutes.
  • The final scene in the modern Battlestar Galactica episode "Scar" has Kara and Helo in a gym discussing the episode's events. After the conclusion of their conversation, the director continued to let the camera roll (as was common on the show) giving the actors a chance to do some faux-sparring and tapping out. Ron Moore was originally going to include another scene of Kara praying but decided that moment was a much better ending to the show.
  • The Yule Log, a popular Christmas program consisting of nothing but a fireplace which first zooms in when it begins, then zooms out then in again at certain points before zooming back out at the end.
  • Pulled off with aplomb in the opening of the second episode of Carnivŕle, featuring a silent diner with cast members slowly entering and not saying a word. When the first line is spoken several minutes in, it seems almost deafening.
  • Breaking Bad has a scene where a character is arrested by an undercover cop for drug dealing. Most shows would have a quick scene, maybe 30 seconds long, where the guy makes the sale then gets busted. Here, the entire deal, the back and forth from the cop trying to convince the dealer, the dealer looking around trying to figure out what's happening, some chit-chat, and finally ends with the arrest.
  • The Stinger for the end of series 1 of Misfits is a side angle of Nathan waking up in his coffin. First, he's elated that he's alive and has a superpower, and then gradually realizes he's stuck in a coffin. He quiets down, turns on his iPod, and lies down. The music plays and the credits roll over the scene for about a minute or so before fading out.
  • Played for Laughs in the Buffy the Vampire Slayer episode "No Place Like Home." Buffy sees Giles dressed as a wizard and the two stare at each other for about half a minute, with Buffy admirably being able to keep from laughing, until Giles realizes how silly he looks and reluctantly removes the costume.
  • The confession scene from the episode "Possible Kill Screen" of The Shield in which Vic confess to all of his and the Strike Team's crimes in order to sign an immunity deal with the FBI. There's almost two minutes of silence before Vic can bring himself to talk.
  • Played for laughs in one episode of El Chavo del ocho, "The Festival of the Good Neighborhood". Chavo is reciting a poem called "The Repenting Dog", which consists of just four verses which are repeated over and over. Chavo planed to repeat them 44 times, but then Don Ramon cuts him short.
  • The Doctor Who story "The Leisure Hive" opens with a notorious scene of the camera panning along a row of abandoned deckchairs and huts on a dingy winter beach for a whole minute and a half before revealing the TARDIS. Reportedly, this was included because the first episode underran slightly after John Nathan-Turner had most of the script's comedic elements excised (wanting to move away from the Lighter and Softer tone of the Graham Williams era).
  • During the early years of television, when most programs were broadcast live, it was rather commonplace for scripted broadcasts to run short, forcing the performers to ad-lib sometimes for several minutes until their allotted time ran out. The comedy duo of Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis often had to do this when their shows ran short. Here is one example. Jackie Gleason similarly was forced to ad-lib for several minutes at the end of one of his 1950s broadcasts when a piece of scenery that was supposed to be lowered into place got stuck in the rafters; Gleason spent part of the time comically tying a tie and hollering "I wouldn't wish this spot on a leopard!"
  • A common gag on the Armenian News Parody show ArmComedy is for the screen to suddenly go Deliberate Monochrome, look like it was recorded on an old camcorder, and have the hosts seemingly go off script and not know they are being recorded.
  • Escape at Dannemora features several instances of extremely lengthy close-ups of a character's face. One early scene fixates on Sweat's face as he listens to rock music on his headphones while lying in bed. Episode 6 has one on Tilly's face as she looks at Lyle amorously.
  • Too Old to Die Young: The pace of the miniseries is intentionally protracted, with long pauses between lines of dialogue and long periods of silence.

    Music Videos 
  • The Replacements' video for "Bastards of Young" is a shot of a stereo system in somebody's lounge room, with the song playing (at the wrong speed) on the turn table. The camera stays on it as people go in and out of the room. At the end of the song, the speaker is kicked over.
    • The Replacements hated making music videos and as a result, a lot of their videos are like this. The video for "Left of the Dial" is pretty much identical to the video for "Bastards of Young", expect for a handful of differences that make it apparent it isn't the same footage (chief among them is that the speaker lives). The video for "Hold My Life" is also identical to the other two but in full color.
  • The Pixies' video for "Velouria" is a single shot of the band running a short distance across a rock quarry in slow motion for about four minutes. A fan video once sped up the footage to their best guess at the original speed, setting it to a severely edited 30 second version of the song. Reportedly this is because the band really wanted to perform on Top of the Pops while the song was in the UK Top 40, but the show required all acts performing on the show to have a music video for their current single, so they threw something together at the last minute. It was all in vain because the band never did get to play on Top of the Pops.
  • One of Death Grips' videos for "On GP" uses only one shot of the band sitting in a small room, nearly motionless.
  • Nitzer Ebb subverts this trope with the video for "Control I'm Here." The camera stays in the same place for the entire video, but different scenes (filmed using the very same camera angle) are visually spliced in.
  • The video for Fatboy Slim's "Everybody Needs a 303" essentially consists of a guy in a hat standing around doing nothing. For the first two minutes, he does just that, staring off camera. Finally something happens (a hand comes in off-camera and writes in lipstick on his forehead, taking about a minute to do so; finally, he turns a bit more to the camera and lights up, and as he takes his smoke, you can finally read what's written: "Why Make Videos?"). The point is not lost on the audience, one might imagine.
  • The video of "Proof" by I Am Kloot is a long shot of Christopher Eccleston staring into the camera and slowly moving from a neutral expression to a smile. Used very well; it's damn near impossible to watch in real time and not find yourself smiling along with him.
  • In a possible Shout-Out to The Replacements' "Bastards of Young" video, the official video for Blur's long awaited 2010 reunion single "Fool's Day" simply features the single playing on a turntable. The tonearm of the player moves slowly to middle of the record and when the song ends the video cuts to black. The end.
  • The video for "Crash Years" by The New Pornographers features a static aerial view of a portion of a brick street, as people walk by holding umbrellas, riding on bicycles and other miscellaneous stuff happens below the camera.
  • The video for the New Order song "Round and Round" is merely a series of black and white shots of the heads and shoulders of various women, with random colored pictures spliced in. However, an alternate version exists, where the only shot is one woman. For the entirety of the music video.
  • R.E.M.'s "Bang and Blame" video ends with Michael Stipe walking off, while the video (and the song) keeps going.
  • The Rentals' "Friends Of P." video ends with 30 seconds of a single shot of the band standing with their instruments in complete silence and occasionally fidgeting a little, as eventually the lights start going out in the room and everything fades to black. When airing the video, MTV would usually cut this scene out, fading out prematurely once the actual song was finished.
  • Played with in Natalie Imbruglia 's "Torn" video. The scenes are cut and change, but the camera always stays in the exact same place, giving this effect and resulting in relatively long takes for a music clip.
  • "Here It Goes Again" is one long take of OK Go on treadmills.
  • The Ramones' video for "I Wanna Be Sedated" consists of 2 minutes and 31 seconds of a single shot of the band sitting around a table while all sorts of crazy people roam around the room, with the band being completely unfazed by their presence.
  • FKA twigs' video for "Two Weeks" starts out zoomed in on twigs' face, then gradually zooms out over the course of four minutes to reveal that she's some sort of ancient goddess thrice the size of her followers sitting in a throne room. While twigs and her acolytes do writhe around a bit, they remain in the same place for the entire duration of the video.
  • The music video to Death Valley Girls' "Disaster (Is What We're After)" consists of Iggy Pop eating a hamburger for 4 minutes - this is an homage to the film 66 Scenes of America, which has a similar scene with Andy Warhol (but unlike the music video, the original film used no background music),

    Professional Wrestling 
  • Sometimes, WWE or TNA will continue to roll the cameras during commercial breaks and/or following the end of a live broadcast. The idea is one of the following:
    • To tell what happened "after going off the air." Usually this is used in a major feud and can range from additional comments made during an in-ring promo to a post-program pull-apart brawl to showing the aftermath of a multiple guys-on-one attack.
    • If used during a commercial break during a live broadcast, to show an "injured" wrestler being "helped" to the back or to catch viewers up on exciting parts of the ongoing wrestling match that happened during the commercial break.
    • To tape post-program matches, which may be aired later or released on home video (as "exclusives"). In the very least, the video can be used as evaluation tools, to help promoters determine whether a particular wrestler has potential, or to help a novice wrestler learn from what he did during matches to improve.

  • One could certainly make an argument that Waiting for Godot is essentially one long instance of Leave The Camera Running since it consists mostly of inane conversations and little happens in terms of traditional plot.
    • The same can be said for Samuel Beckett's other theatrical works. Krapp's Last Tape is about a man who sits in a chair listening to old recordings of himself.
  • The same goes for Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, which makes sense since the play bears a striking, and not unintentional, resemblance to Waiting for Godot.
  • True of a lot of absurdist theatre, including the above examples. Goes hand-in-hand with Absurdism's tendency for repetitious, inane dialogue, long awkward pauses, and plays in real-time.
  • Anything directed and/or written by Robert Wilson.
  • The 136-bar prelude to Das Rheingold consists of gradually intensifying repetitions of a single Leitmotif with no chord changes.

    Video Games 
  • The gaming-related trope Idle Animation is a variation of leaving the camera running.
  • Final Fantasy:
    • Final Fantasy VII:
      • The game opens with an FMV of a starfield doing absolutely nothing for a ridiculous amount of time. This had been intended to be the backdrop for an Opening Crawl, but the text was cut for being redundant (as Barret provides a Lecture as Exposition to Cloud a few minutes later).
      • Did you decide to take the stairs when invading Shinra HQ? Enjoy climbing 60 flights of identical stairs in real time. Yeah.
    • Final Fantasy VIII: Rinoa floating in space serves as an example of the 'tension' form above.
  • Kingdom Hearts II: One of the scenes in the Final Mix shows Xemnas accessing the Chamber of Repose... which requires tapping at Hollow Bastion's computer, walking down to the Heartless Manufactory, continuing down a very long spiral staircase, and going through what seems to be a prison area. There's a brief cut mid-descent, but it still takes a good few minutes. The flashback-esque dialogue that plays during this period would have diminished the nature of the cutscene if it hadn't been pulled from another cutscene that plays two fights later.
  • In Uru: Path of the Shell, three puzzles are solved by waiting at one point for several minutes. The reason for this is those puzzles were designed for the MMORPG which was dropped for various reasons. Cyan finished off the ages they'd been working on and packaged them as Path of the Shell, but their substitute for puzzles that needed multiple people was to put in ridiculous 15-minute pauses. When the online version was revived (briefly) we got to see how the puzzles were originally intended.
  • At one point in Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story, you have to drill into a specific area inside Bowser's body to fix his back. After doing so, several NPCs sit down to have a tea break before the game tells you, in no uncertain terms, to put down the DS and go do something else for a while. It's not kidding - if you do decide to wait it out, it'll take almost five minutes before you can regain control. Unless, of course, you talked to that one NPC that gave you the code that literally makes time speed up to the exact moment you regain control when you input it. Then it's about five seconds, max.
  • In the lead-up to the Final Boss of Chapter 1 of Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain, Skull Face goes on a Motive Rant while he and Venom Snake ride in a truck. There is a two-minute pause during the rant — the approximate length of time for the chorus to the game's theme song — before Skull Face finishes his spiel.
  • To complete That One Sidequest in Braid, you have to wait for about an hour and a half in one stage for a slow-moving cloud to get from one side of the screen to a place where you're high enough to jump onto it. You then have to wait an additional half-hour for the cloud to get where you need to be. And this ties in with several of the game's messages.
  • Though not quite as exaggerated as most here, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney's bonus case achieves the effect. Most suspicious characters in the series have some kind of overblown reaction to a critical piece of evidence being presented to them, or a hole being blown in their story. Not Chief of Police Damon Gant- he just stares at you, smirking, for several seconds. Unlike every other text event in the entire series, there's no way to mash the A button through this one.
  • Pokémon Ruby and Sapphire and its remakes have an optional sidequest puzzle like this (it's changed in Emerald) that opens Regice's cave; you click on the Braille puzzle and then wait two full minutes before it opens.
  • In EarthBound (1994), the password to get into Belch's base is... waiting three minutes. No, you don't SAY "waiting three minutes." When the guy asks you the password, you just stand there. And probably go and get a sandwich and drink.
    • A similar Waiting Puzzle was used in Shin Megami Tensei III: Nocturne, as a ghost in the Labyrinth of Amala's Fourth Kalpa will ask if you're a patient person. Waiting about 3 minutes or so before answering will allow you to continue onwards.
  • Penn and Teller's Smoke and Mirrors includes a game called "Desert Bus" where you drive a bus from Tucson, Arizona, to Las Vegas, Nevada, at forty-five miles an hour. It's exactly as fun as you imagine. You also have to pay attention and actually keep holding the controls down correctly or the bus will veer off the road. Sometimes, a bug will splatter on the windshield. And eventually, night will fall. And then the sun will rise! When you finally arrive, it's time to take the return trip. And if you veer off the road? The bus stalls and is towed back to Tucson in real time!
  • Anybody crazy enough can pop in Microsoft Flight Simulator and fly long-haul trips that take exactly as long as reality. One mission involves flying a Concorde SST across the Atlantic. Even at supersonic speed, it takes several hours... And there are people crazy enough. One popular add-on is called "In-Flight Entertainment" and allows you to watch your favorite DVD(s) in-game.
  • Imagine going from Earth to Mars in real time. You can do that in Orbiter. Luckily, you can increase and decrease the speed of time in that simulator.
  • The 360 version of Guitar Hero II gave an achievement for watching the credits. The 15+ minute long credits where the only music is Push Push Lady Lightning and the outro solo of the cover version of War Pigs on loop. Appropriately, the achievement icon is "ZZZ".
  • Rock Band Unplugged (PSP) gives an in-game guitar based on the Backbone Entertainment logo after completing the Rolling Stone Rock Immortals List and sitting through the 10+ minutes of credits.
  • The ending of most Splatter House games often lead to a silent, 10~20 second long static shot of the discarded Terror Mask before it lifts off by itself, laughing maniacally.
  • At the end of Stage 4 of Touhou Youyoumu ~ Perfect Cherry Blossom, the stage stops scrolling, the enemies stop coming, and there's a pause of at least 20 seconds before the start of the pre-boss cutscene. Even then, the boss (or rather, bosses) don't appear immediately; only when Reimu remarks, "Doesn't someone usually appear at this point?" does the first of the Prismriver Sisters present herself.
  • Turok 2: Oblivion's leitmotif apparently runs on indefinitely without exactly repeating, due to the procedurally generated arrangement of its instrument sequences. The YouTube clip of it is 15 minutes (split into two parts).
  • "Marginal Consciousness" from Battle Garegga is the only tune that doesn't technically loop, it indefinitely keeps increasing in pitch if listened to in the arcade game's sound test.
  • In Halo: Reach's post-credits epilogue, the camera on Noble Six's discarded broken helmet shows their final moments from third person. No, you don't get to see their face.
  • Each and every cutscene of 198X is a stationary still of your character just sitting, standing, lying on his bed, and just chilling out and doing nothing, right up to the ending scene.
  • The old Edutainment title Agent USA has you fighting off people that have been turned into walking TV fuzz and can fuzz you, making you lose control of your character. This doesn't end the game, though, and it's possible to just leave the game running for a few hours and suddenly randomly run into a power crystal that de-fuzzes you, getting you back into the game.
  • The Paranoia quest in The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion would work like this if you followed Glathir's advice to shadow the people he suspects are stalking him. For the most part, the NPCs just go through scripted routines that make up the daily life of a farmer. Or you could just wait behind the church for 24 hours and tell him whatever you want.
  • Doubles as an Overly-Long Gag: the cutscene showing King Zora moving out of the way in The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time takes about a minute to finish.
  • The true ending of Chakan: The Forever Man. After beating Death, the game cuts to an hourglass, and then just stays on it. If you wait a long time (a long, long, long, long, long, long, loooooooooooooong time,) the words "Not The End" appear on the screen and the game returns to the title screen.
  • Doki Doki Literature Club! has a text variation, after Yuri commits suicide in front of the player, the player is then treated to hundreds and hundreds of lines of randomly generated garbage text (fortunately the Skip button becomes available to quickly get through them all) as they watch Yuri's corpse slowly decompose over the weekend.
  • The Steam release trailer for Black Mesa, which takes the form of a promotional video for the titular facility's weapons division, features an interview with a HECU soldier who ends his segment by saying "Thanks a lot, Black Mesa!" and giving the camera a thumbs-up. The camera lingers on him for a while as he awkwardly holds his pose and several people in the background laugh at him.
  • Resident Evil: the first game uses this deliberately in Jill's game when, after the second battle with Yawn, Jill jumps down a hole and Barry tells her he'll go find a rope. Instead of just having Barry leave and come back in a cutscene, the game allows Jill to move around in the pit while she waits, including finding a another hole leading further down. Most players would probably assume they are supposed to go down the hole, but this actually leads to Barry dying later in the game. You are actually supposed to wait in real time for Barry to come back, then you can go back down the hole safely to continue the game.

    Web Animation 
  • hololive English member Ceres Fauna fell into this while streaming Euro Truck Simulator and somehow wrecking her truck in a way that left it "faceplanted" on the asphalt, leaving her so stunned that she could only watch the camera slowly rotate around the result for six minutes while "Ode to Joy" played in the background. Cue Evangelion references in the chat and Fauna laughing so hard that she declared an end to the gaming portion of the stream.
  • Homestar Runner: Parodied in the Strong Bad Email "independent", where Strong Sad proudly (or at least as proud sounding as he can get) says his film school minor was "Holding on wide shots for too long". And then there's a good 5-second break until the scene cuts.
  • This Red vs. Blue video ends with two minutes of a silent black screen, after which the viewer "earns" the "Last Two Minutes of My Life Back" achievement.

  • A&H Club: Issue 4 starts with two of these in a row. First, three pages straight with a fixed camera facing only Adrian's front seat (including an entire page during which nothing happens but the Title Card). We see her car accident through this, then the camera shifts to another fixed perspective- Hildegarde's phone, ringing off the hook for two more pages as she moves around in the background.
  • In Sluggy Freelance, Dr. Viennason demonstrates what it would be like if time did not exist. For about four hours.
  • The webcomic Mezza Cotta has been running for about 10,000,000,000,000 years.
  • Questionable Content has four panels of Shirtless Steve eating cereal. Apparently a Take That, Audience! towards people asking where Steve is, but also a Teasing Creator moment as it came right after a series of strips full of Ship Tease with a minor cliffhanger. He had even joked on Twitter that he was going to do it, and apparently not many people believed him. Or asked for it.

    Web Original 
  • The original ending of "Some Sucky Action Movie." It consisted of 2 minutes straight of Dr.T messing around with the camera and showing the dead bodies, the dragon trying to leave but being told not to go, and him being a wacko.
  • Attack of the Alium Monstars from Outside Space, due to the video being all one person operating the camera.
  • One Andrew Klavan on the Culture video had Andrew Klavan notice that that after the story he still had time left so he began to sing Never Gonna Give You Up then stopped after a few seconds sighed sadly and after he walked offscreen, the wall of screens behind him began to play the music video for a few more seconds.
  • Every episode of I Love Alaska is a single long shot of Alaskan scenery, over which a monotone voice is played, along with occasional sound effects.
  • Twitch Plays Pokémon has this by necessity due to the setup: the stream consists of a Pokemon game with the inputs entered by people watching the stream, meaning that any kind of editing is impossible. Naturally, because of the Hive Mind of watchers, this regularly results in incidents like the player character wandering around in front of a building for an hour trying to reach the door, or spending even longer attempting to walk past a ledge without falling off. Most infamously, during the Team Rocket HQ portion of the original stream, it took over two days for the PC to get through the maze. Needless to say, no one is ever going to watch the whole stream from start to finish (it totals about 16 continuous days of footage).
  • ClickHole engages in this from time to time. For instance, the three hour long This Stick Of Butter Is Left Out At Room Temperature; You Won’t Believe What Happens Next.
  • Many of CDZA's videos end with one of the singers holding up a "click to subscribe" sign while they all try to stand very still and keep straight faces, as the camera continues running.
  • "Sitting And Smiling", a series of YouTube videos, that are just a guy, well sitting and smiling...for four hours straight. Not even breaking character when a literal burglar broke into his house when he was doing one of these. Luckily, the robber immediately left upon seeing him. Yes, these are real and they've acquired millions of views.
  • There's an entire genre of YouTube videos, related to ASMR Videos, usually referred to as "video game ambience", that just leave the camera running at a location in a video game, often for hours on end. These videos are mainly meant to be put on in the background while the viewer goes about other tasks or even goes to sleep.

    Western Animation 
  • Drawn Together commonly uses this trope in gags, such as a shot of the cast sitting on the floor doing nothing, or Spanky Ham continually farting, both for more than a minute. This can overlap with Overly-Long Gag.
  • Space Ghost Coast to Coast episode "Fire Ant" features a seemingly never-ending scene in which Space Ghost follows an ant for TEN MINUTES with almost no dialogue or action. Predictably this scene was cut short in future airings and the original version is rarely seen, although it does show up on the DVD.
  • One of the biggest complaints about Family Guy, which not only makes a habit of making frequent cutaway gags to something completely irrelevant but also makes them go on for way too long. Including, at one point, a minute-long clip of Conway Twitty performing for no reason. One cutaway gag just played the entire music video for "Dancing in the Street". Yes, that is the entire three-minute long animation.
  • While it doesn't abuse the Overly Long Gags as much as Family Guy is guilty of, Robot Chicken does have a tendency for the [ideally] brief, single-joke sketches to keep going for a while after the punchline has already been delivered.
  • Played with in the South Park episode "Cancelled", where Cartman demands Kyle stick his finger up his ass (for very important reasons). Kyle tries multiple times, but each time Cartman farts just before impact and scares Kyle away. Chef laughs the first few times, then says it isn't funny anymore. Cartman does it again and Chef says "Ok, now it's funny again."
  • He-Man and the Masters of the Universe (1983) was famous for its very long, very slow pans used for establishing shots. A classic example of this trope being used for budgetary reasons.
  • The Invader Zim episode "Zim Eats Waffles" is mostly Dib watching Zim eat waffles from a security camera. The episode contains scenes where it is Zim sitting at his table eating waffles talking about his day, etc. with Gir. This is also a perfect example of Exactly What It Says on the Tin.
  • In the third season episode of ReBoot "The Episode With No Name," which is an homage to Sergio Leone and the Spaghetti Western, the Quick Draw duel between AndrAIa and the female Guardian lasts one minute and thirteen seconds before either character draws their weapon. Like Sergio himself did, this was used to build the tension and to underline the psychological conflict between the two characters before they even began the physical confrontation. While they waited, the shot cut back and forth between their respective weapons, gazes, and their subconscious signs of stress. Ultimately, the fight is decided by a single shot.
  • The Ren & Stimpy Show was often guilty of this to fill out the runtime, by the creators' own admission; mostly establishing and reaction shots that hang on a few seconds longer than they really need to, but nothing too egregious. Ren & Stimpy "Adult Party Cartoon", however, took it to a whole other level. Most of the episodes could have easily clocked in at the standard 10-minute mark, but are stretched out to a half hour or more with tons of lingering shots, and often static ones where nothing much is actually happening.
  • Samurai Jack is famous for its very long, slow shots, usually of Samurai Jack wandering some vast landscape, which really drives home the idea of a lonely knight errant. Other times it's used to create tensions, such as when Jack was in the middle of a cat-and-mouse game with four elite hunters, or when he slowly walked into a trap set up by the episode's villains. Needless to say, it was used to great effect.
  • The end of the Moral Orel episode "Turn The Other Cheek" has Orel and Clay finish their study session early. Clay states "Well, we've got about another minute. They just remain there, doing almost nothing. The credits roll over this shot. A similar, but arguably more effective example would be the credits of "Nature: Part 2." It has Orel eating and thinking about what his mother said (that when Clay gets drunk, his true nature emerges), shown from the outside of his room as a bird from earlier sits on a branch. Most of the credits only show one name at a time, to make this shot with minimal action go on for even longer.
  • Futurama does this in its "Saturday Morning Fun Pit" parody of Scooby-Doo, subverting the standard shot in which the Monster of the Week would chase Shaggy repeatedly into and out of a bunch of doors down a single hallway: they run into a single door, and the camera holds on the empty hallway for several seconds.
  • The final shot of BoJack Horseman is of BoJack and Diane sitting on the roof just looking up at the stars and awkwardly trying to avoid looking at each other as "Mr. Blue" by Catherine Feeny plays.
  • A couple of the stingers from Gravity Falls used this as a joke:

    Real Life 
  • After a standoff at the Malheur Wildlife Refuge in Oregon, a number of militiamen heading to a meeting with their supporters were arrested en route, along with several of their supporters at their destination. One of their supporters, Pete Santilli, ran a YouTube livestream, and got arrested and dropped his camera, which continued to stream an image of the wall of his motel room for hours afterwards.
  • Before leaving the moon on Apollos 15, 16, and 17, the astronauts would drive their lunar rover a short distance away and abandoned them facing the lunar module, so as to capture footage of the take-off. Since after that point there was no one there to switch it off, the camera would continue filming until it ran out of power.


Video Example(s):


Shuffling off to ... where?

After the first set of end credits, there's a stinger of Old Tonto, presumably on his way to meet up with his old Kemosabe, shuffling his way through the desert.
And for the next six minutes or so as the credits roll, you can watch as he dwindles into the distance.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (5 votes)

Example of:

Main / LeaveTheCameraRunning

Media sources: