It's Such a Beautiful Day

Part of Animation Appreciation Week!

It's Such a Beautiful Day

It's Such a Beautiful Day is a moving masterpiece that deserves more love and attention from animation fans. Initially released as three animated short films, Don Hertzfeldt pieced them together in one single experimental feature film, blending 2D animation with photographs and surreal imagery in a unique editing style. The film follows Bill, a troubled man trying to come to terms with his shattered psyche. As his ordinary life begins to fall apart, he voyages through past and future in search of meaning and love.

Hertzfeldt is one of the most brilliant minds out there when it comes to animation. Famous for his challenging and existential stories, he uses humor and absurdities to deliver an intimate meditation on the subconscious. Although It's Such a Beautiful Day is complex and non-linear, the nonchalant narrative and the engaging voice-over makes it easy for broad audiences to relate to Bill and his journey, leading up to an emotional ending that will stick with viewers for a long time.

Instead of a vibrant outburst of colors and styles, It's Such a Beautiful Day opts for a simple hand-drawn technique and a grayish atmosphere to effectively capture Bill's dreadful state of mind. Additionally, it perfectly fits with the many split-screen windows scattered across the movie as the narrator describes Bill's chaotic stream of consciousness. Since the characters are drawn as stick figures, one can only tell them apart through their accessories and gadgets, precisely translating memory into film: it's common to remember someone because of a specific object such as a hat or a watch. In It's Such a Beautiful Day, these small fragments of memory is what gives life to the characters.

A few years after It's Such a Beautiful Day's emotional gut punch, Hertzfeldt once again decided to hit his fans where it hurts with World of Tomorrow, a trilogy of films centered around a young girl's journey to a distant future, guided by an older, wiser, and desolate version of herself. With his distinctive stick figures and psychedelic scenarios, Hertzfeldt challenges the limits of time and space in search of how much of the human mind endures, and how the child inside us might be the only genuine part of the soul that carries on unscathed. In sum, Hertzfeldt is definitely one of the most creative voices in animation right now, breaking stereotypes and addressing complex matters of existentialism and nostalgia with an easygoing approach that only gets better with every rewatch.

— Arthur Goyaz, Movieweb

It's Such a Beautiful Day

Mon October 2, 2023, 7:30 PM, Muenzinger Auditorium



10 films for $60 with punch card
$9 general admission. $7 w/UCB student ID, $7 for senior citizens
$1 discount to anyone with a bike helmet
Free on your birthday! CU Cinema Studies students get in free.


Pay lot 360 (now only $1/hour!), across from the buffalo statue and next to the Duane Physics tower, is closest to Muenzinger. Free parking can be found after 5pm at the meters along Colorado Ave east of Folsom stadium and along University Ave west of Macky.


Park elsewhere and catch the HOP to campus

International Film Series

(Originally called The University Film Commission)
Established 1941 by James Sandoe.

First Person Cinema

(Originally called The Experimental Cinema Group)
Established 1955 by Carla Selby, Gladney Oakley, Bruce Conner and Stan Brakhage.

C.U. Film Program

(AKA The Rocky Mountain Film Center)
First offered degrees in filmmaking and critical studies in 1989 under the guidance of Virgil Grillo.

Celebrating Stan

Created by Suranjan Ganguly in 2003.

C.U. Department of Cinema Studies & Moving Image Arts

Established 2017 by Chair Ernesto Acevedo-Muñoz.

Thank you, sponsors!
Boulder International Film Festival
Department of Cinema Studies & Moving Image Arts

Looking for a gift for a friend?
Buy a Frequent Patron Punch Card for $60 at any IFS show. With the punch card you can see ten films (a value of $90).

Cox & Kjølseth
: Filmmaker Alex Cox & Pablo Kjølseth discuss film topics from their own unique perspectives.

: Pablo and Ana share Zoom-based briefs on what's currently playing at IFS

Search IFS schedules

Index of visiting artists

Sun Mar 10, 2024

Jeanne Dielman, 23, quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles

At Muenzinger Auditorium

Mon Apr 1, 2024

Hot Shots! Part Deux

At Muenzinger Auditorium

more on 35mm...