Tunnel Vision

Developed by nine animators over 15 weeks, Tunnel Vision is a short horror film that fuses 2D animation with stop-motion animation. Secluded in the depths of his mother’s basement, Lou Saer Mann (*ahem* Loser Man) explores the pixel landscape of Legend Lands and finds more than he bargained for. As his journey progresses, Lou’s long expeditions in the game soon gain the attention of a dark presence. Awakened from dormancy, this mysterious creature roams the game on its own quest, sending the game’s characters into a panic as they try to warn Lou of impending danger.

Tunnel Vision highlights the obsessive side of gamer culture and how it can negatively impact those who become addicted to video games. As Lou becomes a shut-in, his attention fixates on a video game called Legend Lands. By the time we meet Lou in Tunnel Vision, he has already maxed out the top level of this game. Suggestions, reminders, and demands to unplug are ignored in favor of more dopamine hits. Ultimately, Lou loses himself to his addiction in the truest sense and becomes doomed to a life of video games forever.

Legend Lands is inspired by early 2000s role-playing games (RPGs) and fantasy games like Final Fantasy and Dungeons and Dragons. Tunnel Vision aims to recreate this era just at the Internet's burgeoning when the first signs of dependency on the home computer began to appear. Lou is the personification of the Mother’s Basement stereotype, the classic go-to insult for any chronically online adult dependent on their parents to take care of them. The skull monster antagonist is inspired by modern internet alternate reality games (ARGs), which incorporate heavy amounts of analog horror and the breaking of the 4th wall.

Created by UCF Students:
Amanda Anderson
Moises Beato
Maya Garcia
Joan Kowalski
Ryan Pryce
Jenna Reed
Kimberly Styblo
Manu Tampied
Olive Waddell

All work produced for UCF SVAD Experimental Animation Spring 2023 Workshop Course Professor Matt Dombrowski.

  • Matt Dombrowski
  • Amanda Anderson
    Student Animators
  • Moises Beato
    Student Animators
  • Maya Garcia
    Student Animators
  • Joan Kowalski
    Student Animators
  • Ryan Pryce
    Student Animators
  • Jenna Reed
    Student Animators
  • Kimberly Styblo
    Student Animators
  • Manu Tampied
    Student Animators
  • Olive Waddell
    Student Animators
  • Project Type:
    Animation, Short, Student
  • Runtime:
    6 minutes 33 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    April 28, 2023
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
    Yes - University of Central Florida
Director Biography

Matt Dombrowski, MFA, is an Associate Professor of Emerging Media at the University of Central Florida’s (UCF) School of Visual Arts & Design (SVAD) in Orlando, Florida. Matt currently serves as Area Coordinator for the BFA Emerging Media programs Experimental Animation track at UCF.

Add Director Biography
Director Statement

This short was developed over the spring semester in our University of Central Florida School of Visual Arts & Design Experimental Animation Experimental Animation Workshop course. The students were broken up into creative groups, and for many, this was the first time they had worked on a 3D animated production. The students conceptualized and produced everything in the final product. We are very proud of them!