I can only speak for myself when I say that there's not a day that passes where I don't fear at least one of those things. Some days I fear all three at once. Those days tend to be the blackest moments of my existence. But I refuse to accept the idea that I am so unique, that I am so rare that only I fear those things. I assume that all of those themes are simply part of the human condition, whether or not we are all aware of it.
"It's Such A Beautiful Day" is not nearly as funny, but it has everything. The old "I laughed, I cried" thing really applies. We live in the real world, and in it there are frighting moments, beautiful moments, funny moments, and boring moments. Many, many, boring moments. Hertzfeldt's ability to truly embody the monotonous nature of our daily lives is unlike anything I've ever seen in film. I would assume it is a horrifying decision for a film maker to make: putting a boring moment into your movie. But without the monotonous moments, the exciting moments lose all meaning.
In the moments where I break down completely - screaming in my car after work, huddling on the bathroom floor, staring at my computer in my cubical hoping that nobody can tell I'm screaming inside - I am aware that the moment will pass. I know that, in just a few minutes, my heart rate will be back to normal and I will be functional once again. I also know that there is no cure for those momentary lapses in cognitive function. But it's nice to know I'm not alone. It's nice to know other people have the same existential crises that I'm having. Misery loves company.
It's Such A Beautiful day, in one hour, runs through the full depth of emotion I've experienced in a lifetime. Obviously, only in little snippets, but enough for me to connect with them on a deep level. Now I must admit, I would feel somewhat irresponsible if I didn't tell you that this film is fucking weird. It's bizarre, and its protagonist is a stick figure. But if you know Hertzfeldt's shorts, then you are fully prepared. Actually one might argue that this is his most grounded, dare I say: "normal" shorts.
Oh, given the off chance Don Hertzfeldt actually reads this himself, to him I would say Thank You. Thank you for giving my misery a little bit of company.
By: Jim Capie