The documentary follows five people who try their hand at online dating in very different ways. Ruth is looking for true love – finally -, while Philipp is more interested in finding fun. Wolfgang has been divorced three times and he doesn’t want to spend his retirement alone, while Veronika is ready to settle down with the right guy. And Darko is looking for a guy who can fulfill his expectations.
#Single didn’t bring me much new information and it sometimes lacked a critical perspective on (online) dating, but it can be used as a starting point for interesting discussions.
I don’t think that it’s much of a contested point anymore that a lot of people try to find love via dating apps – and a lot of people actually do find it. I would be more interested in the insight a documentary can provide when it takes this as a starting point and not as the major point it examines. But unfortunately that’s just what we get here.
That means that #Single has no thoughts for (gender)queer people on heteronormative platforms – the token gay guy they found sticks exclusively to a platform made for gay people – or what it means to try and date when you’re fat or disabled and not conventionally attractive (you could argue that the older Wolfgang falls into that category, but it’s not really made a point of).
Not only does it lack that critical perspective, it also uncritically reproduces the ways we – as a heteronormative society – talk about dating. For example, they talk at length about studies that tried to figure out what men find attractive in women, but they don’t even mention any studies or theories or whatever about what women might find attractive in men.
I also felt like the ending was a little glossed over, ending on an upbeat note that I found a little jarring.
Nevertheless, there’s much room for discussion in the topic presented by the documentary. But if you want more than just shallow insights, you’ll probably have to figure those out for yourself.