A Social Crime Solving Network

Brooke Butler in Cyber Case (2015)

Isabel Fletcher (Brooke Butler) doesn't feel part of the family anymore since her mum remarried and with her new husband had a son together. It leads to Isabel spending most of her time online, chatting with friends even when she is forced to baby-sit her little stepbrother. When whilst babysitting her brother at the park Isabel takes her eyes off of him for a minute to get him a snack he is abducted she finds herself being blamed for it whilst the FBI come up short in their investigation. It leads to Isabel taking matters into her own hands and along with her friends using the internet to try and track down her missing brother.

Gather round people let me tell you that the internet is bad; it is a tool of evil. That my friends is the typical stance you will find in many made for TV movies, especially those which are trying to be thrillers. And that is how for a while "Cyber Case", a movie of many names, plays out as we not only see how Isabel spends all her time on line but we see how others spend time texting on their phones rather than concentrating on what they are doing, such as a scene at the park where we see parents with their kids but the parents are too busy staring at their phones than actually playing with their kids. In truth the movie makes a good point about how phones and the internet dominate lives.

But as I said "Cyber Case" is only that way for a while as what we also see is how the internet and social networks can be used in a positive way when it comes to a crisis. Of course in doing so it crosses in to the line of fantasy as in most people can not use the internet in such an expert manner and so it is a little unbelievable. But it is nice for once to come across a made for TV movie which shows that the internet can be used for good as well as evil.

The trouble is that "Cyber Case" seems little more than an idea, a plan to show the positives of the internet and so doesn't quite come together as a complete movie. The character depth is not there and often resorts to soap opera style over acting and staring. And despite being a thriller it isn't over thrilling with there being little build up to why or resolution over the actual kidnap as it is all about Isabel saving the day with her friends and their skills on their phones and computers.

What this all boils down to is that whilst it is nice for a movie to show the positives of the internet and social networks "Cyber Case" comes across as more of an under worked idea. It lacks character depth, motive, atmosphere and many more ingredients which would make it feel like a complete, competent thriller rather than just a movie about a teenager using the internet to find her abducted brother.

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