As someone who watches hundreds of movies a year, I don’t often come across films that feel fresh and unique. We Met in Virtual Reality is the rare film that feels wholly original, and I’ve never experienced a movie like this before.
Director Joe Hunting’s We Met in Virtual Reality is a feature-length documentary set entirely inside virtual reality (VR). Every second of footage takes place inside the VR social media platform VRChat. You don’t see a single frame of flesh and blood people. Instead, we hear the interviewees speak as they’re represented onscreen by their colourful VR avatars. Think of it as watching an animated puppet show.
The film was shot during the 2020 pandemic. It follows the digital lives of people who joined VR communities looking for some type of human contact. While the rest of the world turned to awkward and grainy Zoom calls, the tech-savvy folks in this doc slapped on VR headsets and immersed themselves in a cyberspace Wonderland.
The doc takes place in VR, but it isn’t really about the wonders of this technology. Those new to the world of VR won’t learn much here. Instead, the doc celebrates a new-age form of intimacy – can we call it postmodern love?
We Met in Virtual Reality is a heartfelt tale about our irrepressible desire to forge genuine connections. The film spotlights VR belly dancers, sign language instructors, and improv artists who forged real relationships in virtual spaces.
We Met in Virtual Reality premiered at the 2022 Sundance Film Festival. Head here for more from this year’s festival.