Searching — Film Review

This is a movie about a stoic father searching for his missing daughter as the title implies, with the film literally #starringjohncho.

One could really empathize with the father, David Kim, as he fails to connect with his teenage daughter after his wife passes away. Similarly, one could relate with his frustration, guilt, and determination once his daughter goes missing. David Kim represents the common theme of a father who tries too hard to discipline his daughter instead of trying to connect. This film is a compelling mix of mystery, suspense, and heartache.

The film medium was interesting in that the whole movie was done through the lens of technology. The entire movie was shown to the audience digitally through a computer or laptop screen, including video footage displayed through Skype, YouTube, or FaceTime.

This movie was great for diversity, in that the lead protagonist was an Asian man. This rarely happens in American movies, and it was refreshing to see such a story. The last time a movie starred an Asian American man was The Big Sick in 2017 with Kumail Nanjani, and before that — Harold and Kumar Go To White Castle in 2004, also starring John Cho before the hashtag movement was created. It’s powerful to see characters of Asian descent take ownership of a story’s narrative. The film has universal themes that are relatable to every human, and it’s important to see underrepresented people star in them. The audience is able to identify and empathize with a story’s protagonist in a very authentic way.

John Cho did a stellar job playing the father David Kim. Debra Messing also did an excellent job playing Detective Vick. Both actors did an outstanding job playing roles outside of their comedic signature characters — Harold in White Castle, and Grace from Will and Grace. One could really feel for the characters.

I don’t always like suspense films — but I thought this one was very intriguing and moving. In terms of diversity, I give Searching a +5 on the Incluvie scale. I was very happy to see a film #starringjohncho and starring an Asian lead in a very wholesome way.