A loan officer who evicts an old woman from her home finds herself the recipient of a supernatural curse. Desperate, she turns to a seer to try and save her soul, while evil forces work to push her to a breaking point.
With a dead body lying between them, two men wake up in the secure lair of a serial killer who's been nicknamed "Jigsaw". The men must follow various rules and objectives if they wish to survive and win the deadly game set for them.
Rachel Keller is a journalist investigating a videotape that may have killed four teenagers (including her niece). There is an urban legend about this tape: the viewer will die seven days after watching it. If the legend is correct, Rachel will have to run against time to save her son's and her own life. Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Chris Cooper was supposed to be featured in a small role as a child murderer. Though his scenes were allegedly filmed and his name was included in early promotional materials (and on the film's official website) he's nowhere to be seen in the final theatrical cut. See more »
When Noah breaks into the mental institution's record room and is looking through Anna's files, there is an arm with a blue sleeve to his right, even though he is alone. See more »
I hate television. Gives me headaches. You know, I heard there's so many magnetic waves traveling through the air, because of TV and telephones, that we're losing, like, ten times as many brain cells as we're supposed to. Like, all the molecules in our heads are all unstable. All the companies know about it, but they're not doing anything about it. It's, like, a big conspiracy.
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Visually intense creepfest--different purpose than the original
This film is the American take on the Japanese original and while it absorbs its source material intact, it twists around its formula a bit in order to make it fit its new surroundings. The story is the same: a journalist, after losing her niece to a mysterious circumstance, investigates and discovers a cursed videotape, which gives a viewer only seven days to live.
Like its predecessors, the film doesn't spend that much time on the supernatural elements, but focuses more on the mystery. However, The Ring features a lot more supernatural elements immediately and throughout the film than either previous version, perhaps to make more obvious and visceral the impending doom that faces our protagonist. Visually, The Ring has been injected with a shot of adrenaline, being less the brooding mystery of the original and more immediate and menacing. The color palette is colder than Ringu and the story is also more detached and focused on the ghostly mechanics than the human story, which leads the film to be more recognizably intimidating.
The story itself is a little more mysterious in that the backstory of our villain is rather thin and unexplained. Furthermore, the villain is clearly portrayed as senselessly malevolent; this weakens at least two significant scenes. The ending, I think, is more clever than the previous versions. I like that there is something to the relationship between the protagonist, Rachel, and her ally, Noah, but it still seems a little weak when compared to Ringu--where one line can effortlessly show the development in the relationship.
As far as a horror movie goes, The Ring is a blunt, but nonetheless creepy example. Losing some of the trappings of its predecessors helps simplify the story for faster flow and to create room for more visual creepiness, but also loses some of the complexity that helped the story have more depth. It's more of impressive frightfest than Ringu, but is a little weaker in story resonance. In the end, that makes The Ring just as effective overall: if you want more chills, catch this version. If you want more meat, catch Ringu. Decent entertainment. 7/10.
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