Writer: Aneesh Chaganty, Sev Ohanian (Screenplay)
Starring: John Cho, Michelle La, Joseph Lee, Connor McRaith, Debra Messing, Sara Sohn
Plot: After his 16-year-old daughter goes missing, a desperate father breaks into her laptop to look for clues to find her.
Tagline – David Kim’s daughter is missing. He can’t find out where she is until he finds out who she is.
Runtime: 1 Hour 42 Minutes
There may be spoilers in the rest of the review
Verdict: Stunning Thriller
Story: Searching starts as we see the perfect little life, David (Cho), Pamela (Sohn) and their daughter Margot had, until Pamela dies of cancer and the two are left together, Margot continues school reaching High School and the age of 16 where she remains independent.
When Margot leaves a string of missed calls, David is trying to get back to her only to go into a frenzy searching for her, trying to get in contact with any of the friends and is left completely lost, turning to the police Detective Rick (Messing) helps in the search, that will leave you completely shocked at what he finds on her laptop.
Thoughts on Searching
Characters – David Kim is the hard-working husband and father who lets his daughter have the freedom to live her own life after the death of his wife. When he loses contact with her, he goes in search for the truth, learning things about his daughter’s life that he never knew in a desperate race to learn the truth. Margot Kim is the daughter that has gone missing, we learn the truth about her life, one that she had kept secret from her father. Detective Vick is the police officer leading the investigation, she does everything in her power to learn the truth even when it comes dealing with the hardest decisions about David’s involvement in the investigation.
Performances – John Cho is fantastic in this role, this is a performance that feels as raw as it needs to be, you believe he has gone through this experience. Debra Messing shows the determination a cop would have in the search for a missing person. The whole cast feel like they are living through the events in the film.
Story – The story follows one man that must search his daughter’s life to figure out just what happened to her after she goes missing. This does show how in the modern life, teenagers can become wrapped up in worlds they have no ideas about and ones that their parents would never know they are part off. It shows how a relationship between a parent and child can become strained after a death of a parent. Away from this the whole investigation to what happened keeping us guessing and surprised by what has happened in the case. Following the story through the computer screen helps us learn just how David must learn from the computer just what has been going on in his daughter’s life.
Mystery – The mystery does keep us guessing to every clue that David finds leading us down a different path of potential suspect to who is involved.
Settings – The film is shot through the computer screen which leaves us in David’s shoes watching the footage of his daughter’s life or the investigation, this is unique and shows how we can see whole lives on social media or the internet.
Final Thoughts – This is easily the thriller of the year, it makes everything feel real and not overly cinematic, which other thriller will do, you will be left shocked by the end and you won’t see it coming either.
Overall: Essential watching.