Thursday, January 19, 2023

Trying to solve a mystery on-line


A free-standing offshoot of 2018’s Searching, Missing follows its predecessor’s lead by taking place entirely on screens: computers, cell phones, and other devices. A gimmick? Sure. But first-time directors Nicholas D. Johnson and Will Merrick use devices and the images they convey mostly to good effect. Still, the movie, which sports more twists than an amusement park ride, can’t overcome the sense that it’s not about much more than the agility with which it stitches together a plot. And, by its third act, the screenplay strains credibility. Storm Reid plays 18-year-old June. June’s mother (Nia Long) embarks on a Latin American vacation with her new love interest (Ken Leung). When Mom goes missing, June — initially delighted to be free of parental oversight — swings into action. She does her best to discover what happened, even enlisting the help of a low-rent but helpful Colombian investigator (Joaquim de Almeida). The screenplay reveals secret after secret, some of them offering jolts. The performances play second fiddle to the movie’s overall approach, which — though deftly manipulated — ultimately has the feel of a surface affair. Enough. Missing keeps you watching even if it fades from memory as quickly as one of those lost emails you swear you didn’t mistakenly delete.


Nat said...

Did you find this to be a worthwhile watch?

Robert Denerstein said...

Not particularly. As I said, if you see it, it's watchable but hardly memorable.