Don Hertzfeldt’s 2015 animated short “World of Tomorrow” is a nearly perfect piece of moviemaking. First of all, it’s short, and as someone who’s spent the better part of a week at a film festival, sitting through two-and-a-half hour slogs, brevity is appreciated. But World of Tomorrow packs a lot into its 17-minute run time. It’s funny (“Wiggle wiggle wiggle”), devastating (“It is easy to get lost in memories”), beautiful (“I am very proud of my sadness because it means I am more alive”), and thought provoking (“Now is the envy of all of the dead”). It’s a beautiful exploration of the nightmare that is existence, and was rightly nominated for Best Animated Short Film at the Oscars (and wrongly lost to “Bear Story“).
In other words, “World of Tomorrow Episode Two: The Burden of Other People’s Thoughts” (which premiered at Fantastic Fest) has a lot to live up to. Amazingly, and to Hertzfeldt’s immense credit, it’s (almost) as good.