Searching is a thriller directed by Aneesh Chaganty and written by Chaganty and Sev Ohanian. A father tries to find his missing 16-year-old daughter. Searching is described by the media as being the first mainstream Hollywood thriller headlined by an Asian-American actor. It seems race relations ARE getting a little better!
** SLIGHT SPOILERS **
Searching opens in San Jose, California with David Kim (John Cho) looking through old videos of his daughter, Margot Kim (Michelle La) and his late wife, Pamela Nam Kim (Sara Sohn). After Pamela died from cancer and Margot grew older, their relationship began to drift apart. One night, while David was asleep, Margot who had gone to a study group called him three times. David didn’t discover the missed calls until the next morning. He tries to return her calls, but she doesn’t answer, so he assumes she is attending a scheduled piano lesson. After a time, David calls her piano instructor who reveals that Margot canceled her piano lessons six months ago. David discovers that Margot put the money he gave her for the lessons into her bank account and transferred $2500 to a now deleted Venmo account. David decides to report her as missing.
The case is assigned to San Jose PD Detective Rosemary Vick (Debra Messing), who asks David to give her more information about Margot. David contacts all of Margot’s friends after successfully logging onto her Facebook account and finds that she has no close friends. After Vick finds out that Margot made a fake ID for herself, she suggests to David that his daughter may have simply stolen his money and run away.
Searching becomes pretty intense with a surprise ending you won’t see coming. The cast is consist pretty much of David, Pamala, Margot and Vick who all do a brilliant job of portraying their characters. This film uses the technology of smartphones and computers (mainly Facebook) for a large part of the story. The only criticism I have for Searching is the questionable decision made by Margot regarding the reason she quit piano lessons and the intended use for the $2500 she saved up. Other characters like fish n chips/Robert Vick (Steven Michael Eich), Detective Vick’s son, Peter Kim (Joseph Lee), David’s brother and Randy Cartoff (Ric Sarabia), an x-con, helped intensify the plot and make up the rest of the cast. I highly recommend Searching, it’s a good one, check it out!