David Searching Movie Review

A young gay man is looking for purpose, happiness, and maybe even love in David Searching, but this low-energy no-budget effort never really takes flight. Why can't David (Anthony Rapp) find a soul mate? Maybe because he's such a self-obsessed sad sack.

A wannabe documentary filmmaker with no real current job, twentysomething David is both shy and repressed and quite unable to make it in the New York gay dating scene. He's a small fish in a very big and barracuda-filled pond. David gets most of his help and moral support from the fat and jolly Gwen (Camryn Manheim), who fills the film's obligatory fag hag slot and who is also seeking some peace of mind as her marriage unravels. David takes her in as his roommate so she's always to provide a wisecrack or a pat on the back.

Like way too many other movies focusing on young adults -- both gay and straight -- navigating the big city in search of love, David Searching is primarily about David's string of nightmarish first dates with a rogue's gallery of supreme weirdos, each with his own unique tic. The most memorable: a guy (Stephen Spinella) who can't stop talking about hummus. You'll also spot John Cameron Mitchell (of Hedwig and the Angry Inch fame) and David Drake among David's would-be suitors. Noted New York stage actress Kathleen Chalfant also shows up as David's grandmother.

But despite the presence of all this talent (Manheim is especially good), David Searching goes nowhere. Even David's desperate trip to a gay bathhouse is a snore, and if you can't make that exciting, well what's the point? Given David's demeanor, and given that really doesn't make much progress as the movie goes along, my guess is that all these years later he's still searching.

Still hasn't found what he's looking for.

Cast & Crew

Director : Leslie L. Smith

Producer : Leslie L. Smith, John P. Scholz


Comments

David Searching Rating

" Grim "

Rating: NR, 1997

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