Hooray! A new Malcolm Sutherland animation. Of course we never have to wait long, as he is a wonderfully prolific animator. His Vimeo account is chock full of shorts scenes and animation tests, across a whole spectrum of methods and mediums. Now however, he is coming out with longer, fully realized ideas, more frequently. His last one, Umbra, wonderfully shifted gears from the detailed and baroque leanings of his prior work, towards a more minimalistic direction focusing on atmosphere.
Bout continues in the minimalistic, atmospheric vein of Umbra, but, as is the story of Sutherland’s career, the film breaks new ground. At its simplest, it is about two fighters squaring off and the fans who get riled up to watch them challenge each other. This description misses almost the entirety of what makes the film special however. Indeed, trying to formulate into words what makes this film special is proving a challenging task for me right now. Let’s just say it is more effectively felt than described. Put it in full screen and turn up the sound. At 5 min long, you can take the time to give it your undivided attention.