Der schöne Tag

A Fine Day
A balcony door. It is open – the only source of light in a darkened room. The sound of birds. A young woman stands there, motionless. Is she watching the sleeping man?
The young woman, Deniz, is an actress. The film will accompany her for a whole day, with natural light and sound recorded on location. We see how she sorts laundry, auditions for a leading role and meets other people. She often takes the U-Bahn. Her movements on foot and by public transport lend the film structure and determine its rhythm. The feel for Berlin’s topography is impressive.
Der schöne Tag completes Thomas Arslan’s Berlin trilogy, following Kardeşler (1997) and Dealer (1999). It is about people of Turkish origin, all of them second-generation, although questions of identity are not even broached – they remain underneath the surface. In one scene, we see Deniz working as a voice artist, dubbing Éric Rohmer’s Conte d’été into German: like the character in the film whose lines she delivers, Deniz finds herself in state of uncertainty too.
by Thomas Arslan
with Serpil Turhan, Bilge Bingül, Florian Stetter, Selda Kaya, Hafize Üner, Hanns Zischler, Elke Schmitter, Benedict Weber
Germany 2001 German, Turkish 74’ Colour


  • Serpil Turhan
  • Bilge Bingül
  • Florian Stetter
  • Selda Kaya
  • Hafize Üner
  • Hanns Zischler
  • Elke Schmitter
  • Benedict Weber


Written and Directed by Thomas Arslan
Cinematography Michael Wiesweg
Editing Bettina Blickwede
Music Saul Williams, Selda Kaya & shape:mod, Morton Feldman
Sound Andreas Mücke-Niesytka
Art Director Ulrika Anderson
Costumes Annette Guther
Producers Thomas Arslan, Martin Hagermann
Commissioning Editor Lucas Schmidt
Co-Production ZDF/Das kleine Fernsehspiel Mainz, Deutschland

Produced by

Pickpocket Filmproduktion

zero film

Thomas Arslan

Born in 1962 in Braunschweig, Germany. He studied film. Since his feature film debut Mach die Musik leiser (1994), Thomas Arslan has screened films at the Berlinale several times, including Dealer (1999), Der schöne Tag (2001), Aus der Ferne (2006) and Im Schatten (2010) at the Forum, amongst others. He has been a professor of narrative film at Berlin’s University of the Arts since 2007.

Filmography (selection)

1994 Mach die Musik leiser; 87 min. 1997 Geschwister – Kardeşler; 82 min. 1998 Dealer; 74 min. 2001 Der schöne Tag (A Fine Day); 74 min. 2005 Aus der Ferne; 89 min. 2007 Ferien; 91 min. 2010 Im Schatten; 85 min. 2013 Gold; 101 min. 2017 Helle Nächte; 86 min.

Bio- & filmography as of Berlinale 2022