Presenting a poster history of John Cho's new film Searching

Matt Looker

16th July 2018

I have a new obsession.

It has come to my attention that John Cho has a new film out called Searching, and I know this because I spotted a poster for it online and the tagline made me spit out my extra-hot, two-shot, skinny vanilla latte:

Imagine the revelatory scene: "I have a daughter? Oh wow, I'm a dad? I can't believe I have a daughter. What do you mean, she's missing? Oh god, parenting is so hard!"

Soon after though, another new poster for the film caught my eye for different reasons. That's when I knew I had to go back to the beginning and embark on this poster journey properly. And now so can you!
Poster #1

Ok, nice teaser, but... um... how do I put this? THAT'S NOT WHERE THOSE LETTERS ARE ON A KEYBOARD. I've even looked up other non-QWERTY layouts and can't find any that match this. I can only assume that the film was originally called 'WRTUIHL:@' until they decided - for whatever reason - to change it to 'Searching'.
Poster #2

In case you can't see, the phone shows us that, six minutes earlier, John Cho's daughter Margot sent a text message saying 'HELP ME'. Three minutes later and she had tried three times to speak to him via Facetime. At which point, she thought that maybe he was just feeling self-conscious, so two minutes later she tried calling him normally SIX times, during which time she left him three voicemails.

Those voicemails presumably say "HELP ME! HELP ME! OH GOD OH GOD OH GOD", then "Just checking to see if you got my last message?" and finally "Not sure if you're getting these or if my phone is playing up. Give me a call back if you hear this or, wait actually - I'll try you on WhatsApp so I'll speak to you then! I mean now! Haha. Ignore this one"
Poster #3

Ok, aside from the tagline, this poster presumably shows all of the screens on John Cho's phone while he searches for his missing daughter across various news sites, social media platforms and phone notifications. But it also shows a video of himself being interviewed on TV, meaning that he's not above taking some time for some narcissism.

Presumably he'll get to his whole missing daughter thing just as soon as he's crafted the perfect humblebrag for when he shares his interview on Facebook.
Poster #4

Here's another shot of some phone notifications to keep you excited. This time though, there's just a few missed calls and one missed Facetime call listed. What's more horrifying though - even moreso than the horrendous incorporation of a cursor into that 'A' and the fact that John Cho seems to be sleeping with a manta ray - is that the phone is on 1% battery and isn't on charge! Hmm, I wonder if this will prove to be an important plot point in the film?
Poster #5

There's so much going on here. The number of windows open on John Cho's computer screen, and those subsequently being projected on the wall behind, presumably means that he has been spending the night looking at some very non-secure websites. Then there's the poster quotes over the top of the screenshots, and then the different tagline above that? So. Many. Overlapping. Words.

That tagline though: "He'll look virtually everywhere"? How about stepping away from the computer for a bit and tracing her steps? You can even look online on the way if you had only charged your phone!

Oh, and I see that the cursor 'A' is the film's thing then. Ugh. UGH.
Poster #6

Nothing makes me happier than knowing that, in Russia, this film is called NONCK. It seems weird at first that the poster is also on 1% battery, until you realise that the whole thing is supposed to show a phone's lock-screen. Which begs the question: what kind of sicko will take a picture of his missing daughter's car being dredged from the lake and then store it as his screensaver.

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