Love Virtually (2023)

Love Virtually (2023)

A half-baked satire that doesn't really know where it stands

5.7

Movie

United States of America
English
Comedy, Romance
2023
L.E. STAIMAN
Adam Ray, Cheri Oteri, Danielle Krivak
85 min

TLDR

But, hey, it's about the metaverse, so it should be good, right... Right???

What it's about

The stories of four couples as played out in the Metaverse, a common space for work and romance in this near-future.

The take

In a time where the Metaverse feels more and more a looming presence, hoping to crown our complex realities with its utopian promise, it's only natural to expect a film set precisely there. Director L.E. Staiman took a chance with Love Virtually, but his attempt to make a zany, absurdist rom-com (riffing off the title of your aunt's annual Christmas rewatch) simply fails. The premise sees a few couples on the brink of breaking up reconnect with the help of VR headsets, challenging each other's commitment, or cheating with each other (without knowing it of course). A rather funny gambit gets sucked into a vortex of dullness when the characters speak, their dialogues irksome to the point of second-hand embarrassment. Instead of exploring the possibilities of VR relations through an ironic lens, the film seems to not even care enough to look for the genuine comedic potential of the Metaverse as a concept-turned-space. Even the three separate references to Timothée Chalamet don't make a difference to how surprisingly retrograde and somehow banal all of this feels.

What stands out

One thing Love Virtually gets right is the superficiality of a certain kind of streamer/influencer figure and on this occasion, it hits the nail on the head with its well-targeted sarcasm. The character of Kalvin (played by director L.E. Staiman himself), for example, is a walking caricature, but in the best possible way. With him, the film really leans into an absurdist dimension, making him seem completely inadequate, as he finishes each sentence with the performative "Subscribe". It's simple, but so effective, portraying a trope of a person rather than an actual person, and this is what the film should have done throughout, no holding back.

Comments

“Love Virtually” is a charming romance film that blends animation and live-action, featuring a talented cast. The film’s storytelling is engaging, revealing the interconnectedness of the characters’ lives. Despite not being groundbreaking, it earns a solid 7 out of 10 rating for its blend of animation, strong performances, and compelling storytelling. However, it fails to explore the comedic potential of the Metaverse.

“Love Virtually” isn’t just a novel; it’s a journey through the complexities of modern romance, and it’s one that resonated deeply with me. My favorite scene has to be when Emmi and Leo finally meet face-to-face after months of virtual communication.

Funny but sometimes corny
“Are you in love?” “No we are having an affair” is cute but those kind of one liners were not enough to make the movie great. Cult classic maybe because 10 years from now much more virtual love sex relationships is where the world might be. The movie is a fortune cookie… smiling

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