Today's video is a wordless film that leaves you guessing as to its nature right up until — and even beyond — the end:
World Builder was created by Bruce Branit, the same artist who nine years earlier created the popular comedy short The 405. Sometimes, professionals such as Mr. Branit produce independent films to realize a vision that no professional studio would support; other times, it's to experiment with new techniques or to acquire experience for a resume. For example, the latter was Victor Navone's motivation ten years ago when he created the "Alien Song" short, and it worked: that demo earned him a permanent job at Pixar. Similarly, Mr. Branit went on from "The 405" to work on Pushing Daisies and Lost.
The extent of special effects in World Builder is apparent. The World Builder Facebook page has a video looking at one scene in four stages of development, from animatic to green screen to final. It's a fascinating reminder of how much of modern entertainment is fabricated, as also evidenced by the Pink Five effects breakdown.
Storywise, World Builder is a touching gesture of love — one that doubtless many people wish they could offer to those who are trapped within themselves. Why this couple had to remain apart even in the virtual space, I'm unsure… but it's comforting to know that, even if he could not be with her, he could still do something for her. The therapy was likely as helpful for the victim as for those left behind.