Love Dot Loooong: this rom-com set in DC is a bit boring

Sarah Morgan

Okay, so I didn’t need a love story set in DC with two Black leads until I heard it existed. “Love Dot Com: The Social Experiment” is just that! Made in 2019, a Netflix original directed by Charneice Fox and filmed here in DC, the movie had a cute, relevant premise, and used beautiful shots of the city for transitions.

The idea for the plot was intriguing — urban developer Greg meets vegan chef and community-builder Shelby, based in The District, where gentrification due to urban developers is ruining communities. Romeo and Juliet would be jealous of this modern, socially and politically charged forbidden love. 

Unfortunately, it kinda sucked. I watched the movie on my phone while doing the dishes, and the dishes may have been more entertaining. The movie is SLOW, with terrible pacing. It dawdled on, inching until where the climax should have been (there was none) and then from there it sped through the falling action to the end. 

It was confusing, the relationship between the pair was difficult to interpret on any given scene, and the “social experiment” part of the title was discussed but never truly fulfilled. It felt like they wanted to merge two different tropes, but instead of merging them, they awkwardly put one behind the other and hoped for the best.

It was not without its perks, though. Shelby went through some real change and had to think about her perceptions of what love is supposed to be, which is not uncommon in romcoms. However, she was comparing her romance or possibilities to those of other couples and the internet, which is something that is more relevant to a 21st-century audience, especially millennials and gen-z kids. 

Ultimately, I would recommend you watch it. No, I didn’t looove it, and yes, the plot is a little jumbled and slow, but there are some genuine moments in there that made me rethink my idea of love and what it could be. Plus it’s always great to support Black films, and all the references and images of DC are really cool to see in a movie. So if you have some dishes to wash, I recommend you check it out.