115 min., 2002
Written by Ehren Kruger
Directed by Gore Verbinski
My rating: ★★★★
Hasn’t lost anything
* * *
The movie starts with two girls, Katie (Amber Tamblyn) and Becca (Rachael Bella), who are talking about TVs and the effects that the “rays” have on people. Then Becca brings up a story about a videotape that if you watch it, then seven days later you die. As it turns out Katie and three of her friends watched said tape and her days are up. Strange things start to happen and Katie is “attacked” and dies. We switch to a little boy named Aidan (David Dorfman) who was Katie’s cousin, and he is very upset by what happened. His mom Rachel (Naomi Watts) finds out that her three friends were also killed at the exact same time, so she decides to do some research. She finds the tape, watches it and then gets a call. “Seven days” is what a little girl’s voice says. Now she has just seven days to find out what’s going on and if there is any way to stop the killer tape.
The acting is really good and everyone (almost) seems like really normal people you could bump into on the street. Naomi Watts does a great job, going from protecting herself to protecting her son. The transfer is subtle but very effective. Everyone else is just as good, playing their parts with enough subtlety to make them very believable. The only exception is David Dorfman. Most child actors suck and it’s just a painful (especially if you have to watch them) fact, and David is no different. Every time he is on the screen, I just want to punch him or throw him under a lawn mower. Maybe it was the director or maybe it was just him being a shitty actor, but he always has an air of superiority about him. Even when he is supposed to be scared, he still acts like he is the top dog, which makes me just want him to die a horrible and painful death. Arrrrghhhh!
The effects are actually great in the movie. All of the scares are very fast and there is very little time to fully take in what you just saw. I was tempted a few times to pause and re-watch some scenes to see more of what just happened, which is actually a great feeling. A lot of times I just don’t care or think “I’ve seen it before,” and this one is very different. Most of what happens is fast, but subtle. Also there is none of the goddamn blaring music that is consistently hitting you over the head with a meat tenderizer and yelling “THIS IS WHERE YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO BE SCARED!!!!!!” It’s nice to just be scared by an image on the screen or the use of an unnerving sound.
It’s kinda rare when a movie comes along and starts a huge trend. But it’s even more rare for that movie to just disappear into oblivion. When The Ring first came out, everyone was nuts for it, either they were completely scared by it, or they thought it was just incredibly cool. Then after about three years, everyone just kinda forgot about it, the effect it had and how good it was. I think most people should revisit this movie and relive some of the greatness that is The Ring. Now, to make this perfectly clear, I’m not saying that this is better than Ringu, all I’m saying is that it is a great movie. When I watch a remake, I try to not compare it to the original and just enjoy what I’m watching. Sometimes they are better, sometimes worse and sometimes just as good. You should just watch it as if it is its own movie and not a remake (yes I know it can be hard), and try to enjoy it.Have You Read...?