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The following FAQ entries may contain spoilers. Only the biggest ones (if any) will be covered with spoiler tags. Spoiler tags have been used sparingly in order to make the page more readable.
For detailed information about the amounts and types of (a) sex and nudity, (b) violence and gore, (c) profanity, (d) alcohol, drugs, and smoking, and (e) frightening and intense scenes in this movie, consult the IMDb Parents Guide for this movie. The Parents Guide for The Grudge 3 can be found here.
Grudge 3 tells the story about a young Japanese woman named Naoko (Emi Ikehata) who travels to the apartment in Chicago where all the horrific events happened in The Grudge 2. While at the apartment, Naoko meets a family -- Max (Gil McKinney) and his sisters Lisa (Johanna Braddy) and Rose (Jadie Rose Hobson) -- who is being haunted by Kayako (Aiko Horiuchi). Together, they try to survive the evil of Kayako and stop her, once and for all...they hope.
The Grudge series is based on Japanese writer and director Takashi Shimizu's Ju-on series. The Ju-on series includes seven movies: Ju-on (aka Ju-on: The Curse) (2000) and Ju-on 2 (aka Ju-on: The Curse 2) (2000), the first one went straight to video, the second had a theatrical release only in Japan. Ju-on (2003) was made for Japanese cinematic release and followed by Ju-on 2 (2003). Two more feature films were released in 2009: Ju-on: Kuroi shôjo (Ju-on: Black Ghost) and Ju-on: Shiroi rôjo (Ju-on: White Ghost). In 2014, the seventh Ju-on film, Ju-on: Owari no hajimari, was released. The Grudge 3, is the third movie in the English Grudge franchise, which begins with The Grudge (2004) and The Grudge 2 (2006). The Grudge 3 was scripted by screenwriter Brad Keene.
The Grudge 3 opens with a montage of clips from the previous two movies, and there are flashbacks within the story itself. Without a frame of reference, however, the clips may not make sense. Therefore, it is advisable to see the first two Grudge movies before watching this one. The Grudge tells how the curse befell the Saeki family, and The Grudge 2 shows how the curse moved from Japan to Chicago.
Jake Kimble (Matthew Knight) appears in the prologue in a psychiatric unit when he tells his psychiatrist, Dr Sullivan (Shawnee Smith), that Kayako Saeki is going to kill him like she killed his family in Grudge 2. The Saeki family -- Takeo, Kayako, and Toshio -- shows up in flashbacks throughout the movie. Other than that, no other characters from previous Grudge movies will be returning.
It is explained at the beginning of the first two movies that, when someone dies in the grip of a powerful rage, a curse (the grudge) is born. The grudge gathers in that place of death, and those who encounter it will be consumed by its fury. In other words, the curse is an "imprint" of psychic energy that is left behind when a person dies traumatically. The imprint is not only about rage and hatred but about everything that occurred to the victim(s). The curse manifests itself as the ghosts of its victims and supernaturally re-enacts the events that left the imprint in the first place.
It's not explained in the movie what Naoko's ritual was supposed to do. One possibility is that she was repeating the ritual from her childhood when her exorcist mother used her sister Kayako as a vessel to trap the evil spirits of the possessed. Naoko may have been trying to capture Kayako's supernatural rage in order to transfer it into Rose.
Eight. First to go is Jake Kimble from The Grudge 2. He is thrown around his padded cell and has all of his bones broken by Kayako. This is followed by Brenda (Mihaela Nankova) being pulled underwater and drowned in her bathtub. Next to go is the artist Gretchen (Marina Sirtis). Then, Dr. Ann Sullivan has her neck brutally snapped by Kayako. Lisa's boyfriend Andy (Beau Mirchoff) is killed by Kayako when he enters apartment 305 where the original murders took place. Landlord Praski (Michael McCoy) is killed in his car by Toshio. Naoko is stabbed in the neck by Max whilst crawling away. She returns and kills Max.
To stop the curse, Naoko begins to perform a ceremony to stop Kayako once and for all, but Lisa pulls Rose and herself out the ceremony after Naoko tries to force Rose to drink Kayako's blood. Max has been going crazy and bursts into the room. History repeats itself when Max (like Kayako's angry husband) chases Naoko up the stairs, breaks her leg, and eventually kills her by thrusting a knife through the back of her neck. Just as Kayako is about to kill Lisa, Rose drinks Kayako's blood, and Kayako suddenly disappears, releasing Max from the curse but causing Rose to go into breathing spasms. As Lisa puts Rose on her breathing apparatus, Max is attacked by the ghost of Naoko, stumbling down the hall because she can't walk on her broken leg. In the final scene, Rose and Lisa are seated in an ambulance. They hug, and Rose is revealed to be Kayako.
Fuji no longer plays Kayako simply because she got tired of the role after playing it seven times in a row. In this film, she was replaced by Aiko Horiuchi.
The official website for The Grudge 3 can be found here.
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