Movie review: Searching

Searching is a well-crafted drama thriller

Searching is a desktop-focused film where everything is documented on a computer screen. The story revolves around the father of a missing girl going through all of her previous social media use in an attempt to solve why his daughter disappeared.

The style of this movie was originally taken from the horror film Unfriended, however, unlike Unfriended, Searching takes risks and gives a rollercoaster of emotions all in a well-executed mystery that takes multiple different turns that keeps the audience on their toes.

The movie’s best attribute is the technical filming of multiple mediums in order to represent the best and worst of the internet, a theme that it conveys well in general.

The film’s setting leaves many flashbacks in the minds of its audience members, from the desktop opening with the Windows symbol to YouTube being a backdrop for family videos. Even the Windows calendar is accurate in its depictions of these old technologies.

The theme itself is very prevalent in today’s society where the mystery of another person’s social media use can present a very cautionary tale. Whether or not someone would have the desire to look up what someone has been doing online is a very slippery slope and it can leave a bad image as to how they perceive people.

The acting in the film is top notch, with John Cho who plays David, the girl’s father, bringing in a top-level performance. Cho really leaves the audience with nothing but empathy and confusion for his character, making a viewer just as baffled and confused with the situation as David himself.

The mystery itself is one of its biggest selling points, with every crumb being given leaving another question along with it. That is until the ending where the reason behind everything will leave audiences somewhat polarized. Either people will love the direction that it went and see the reasoning of the plot as very good foreshadowing or for some it will come out of nowhere and leave a bad taste in their mouths.

Searching takes on an interesting view in this modern age and the reality audiences live in today. It provides an interesting mystery with overall intrigue and leaves a thrilling experience in its wake. It goes above and beyond on its effort alone, leaving technical marvels and a truly unique experience that will leave people with a smile on their faces at the pure spectacle that a desktop-centred film could have such an impact.