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Sundance 2021: “Searchers”


© Asterlight

Rating: 4 out of 5.

We’re always in search of our soulmate. Some of us have already found it while some are yet to find. But is that special person somewhere out there in a park, waiting, or in the theater, or cinema? The wide range of places allows us to look deeper into individuals we see around to notice one small hint that can give us what we are looking for. Living in the digital era, the right person might be sitting home, on a dating app, let’s say the same as you or someone else, looking for their perfect match. But do we really get a one hundred percent match or is it false perception we fall for, just because we want to believe we’ve found ‘the one’?

“Searchers” is one of the most extraordinary documentaries that provide us with a humorous look into what sometimes can be stressful and depressing – the search of a soulmate on dating apps. Set in New York, during the COVID summer of 2020, director Pacho Velez interviews dozens of people who provide exceptional insight into what they are looking for, characteristics, interests and so much more. Having individuals from different races, background, genders, ages, sexual preferences and more, we are drawn into an intimate atmosphere of those who enlist their most sacred desires as we discover our own.

Sometimes funny and mostly soulful, “Searchers” is a beautifully shot documentary with best intentions in mind. It shows raw human emotions, their needs, expectations and what fails them once they meet their match. Having its interviewees facing their potential match in a blurry background, as we watch them opting one after another, we learn that sometimes, those apps indeed provide not just a fake sense of security but helps build up a relationship in the long run. Indeed, during COVID, especially, people do feel lonely, especially those who do not have someone to share a warm evening together. So dating apps provide refuge to them as they begin their journey in search of their future someone who might surprise, delight or disappoint them.

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