Happiness: Relatable Depiction of the Rat Race by Steve Cutts

Happiness by Steve Cutts

Happiness is London-based animator and illustrator Steve Cutts’ stimulating animation about the rat race.

In this short animated film from November 2017, Cutts avoids the clichés and often unoriginal creative efforts we’ve seen others roll out to criticise wealth, power struggles, and consumerism.

Instead, it’s an exquisitely animated four-minute film that doesn’t hold back and delves into the very beating heart of… THE HUMAN CONDITION! Caps for dramatic effect. Long pause. Now, click the thing below and enjoy.

The Joys of the Rat Race in Happiness

Okay, so you’re fresh from watching the above short film. And this is what you’ve since learned:

  • Money is all-important
  • Alcohol is all-important
  • Drugs!

Now, this was all the work of Cutts. The script and animation—all him. And a fine piece of modern social commentary it is, too.

The only thing he didn’t create was the soundtrack, provided instead by classical musician Georges Bizet (1838-1875). You’ve no doubt heard this before, but it’s a fabulous piece.

Morning Mood by Edvard Grieg ( 1843-1907) is also briefly used in Happiness.

Classical music is a great choice for budding animators and directors who need to add music to their work. And why? As they’re free from copyright restrictions—once a work is over 70 years old, it typically enters the public domain.

That’s what Monty Python did for intro music, using Liberty Bell by John Philip Sousa (1854-1932) to keep budgeting costs down.

It’s a brilliant way to add heft to your work without breaking the bank.

Anyway! Happiness won awards, notable the Webby Winner in 2018 for Film & Video in animation.

It reminds us quite a bit of French animator and director Sylvain Chomet. He’s responsible for modern animation classics such as The Triplets of Belleville (2003) and The Illusionist (2010). Both incredible pieces of work.

Happiness slots into Chomet’s style, although it’s less subtle. But it has to be. As it’s a short. But, hey, we’d love to see Cutts do a full feature film. We know talent when we see it!

About Steve Cutts

Cutts lives in London as an independent artist and freelancer. He’s contributed work to The Simpsons and music videos for Moby.

His work has appeared on Adult Swim and Channel 4.

He’s easy to find online! Follow his YouTube channel to catch up with his work, or give him a follow on Twitter to see more stuff like this.

Cutts is still working away! But animation takes time. You know?! We’re looking forward to what he does next. Big potential here, non!?

Dispense with some gibberish!

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