Just like found footage horror movies that preceded it, Searching uses a medium different from the traditional picture format to drive its plot. It’s a part of a new laptop cinema movement still assembling itself in its early arthouse years as the lives we live are increasingly intertwined with our technology.
Screenwriters are beginning to explore this technological horror, with movies like Unfriended and its dispensable sequel laying the shaky groundwork. While those films have had negative to mixed reviews, Searching seems to be bringing a fresh take on the growing trope. Here, David Kim searches for his missing daughter Margo through her laptop, a digital thriller as clues and twists are dispersed in missed phone call logs and old chats between her classmates. With the unprecedented success of the film at Sundance and its opening, Searching perfects a new style, a film to catch soon before the inevitable successors of years to come.