The Ring 2: How I Wasted 2 Hours of My Life
The Ring was my first introduction to the world of asian horror, ironically recrafted for a Western audience by Gore Verbinski. But the essential subtle, sublime elements of the genre were still intact. What makes The Ring such an effective movie is that the enemy is not some tangible being that can be stopped if only caught, but a discarnate, supernatural entity who works through time. In that sense, The Ring gains its momentum through a prolongued riddle that has to be solved unless its protagonist, Naomi Watts, wants to face a gruesome death at the hands of the long-haired TV demon Samara. We never see the enemy until the very end, which is marked by much pants-crapping.
Given the critical acclaim of The Ring by both critics and movie-goers alike, I was shocked to look in my paper one day and discover that The Ring 2 was already gone from theaters. What gives? It is as if this film had snuck its way in and out of theaters like my uncle Ling invading someone’s house. When the movie finally came out on DVD, I was the first in line to check it out.
I want my money back, and I want 2 hours of my life back.
Forgive me, father, for I have sinned… I actually sat through all of The Ring 2. No, I did not like it. It was quite unpleasant, and I am sorry. Perhaps through this review I can atone for my sin.
Plain and simply, this movie sucks. It’s awful. There is not a single scary moment in this film, and even the closest thing is a direct copy from a scene in the first movie. What is it about? Well, little Aidan and Naomi Watts have resettled in a tiny town when suddenly there are reports of gruesome deaths involving distorted faces and what not. Naomi Watts freaks out. Now wait a second… why in the world would Naomi freak out when she was the one who made the copies in the first place and distributed them to other people in the first film? Part of the more subtle horror of The Ring was the ending in which the mythos of The Ring is perpetrated by Watts’ action, giving a fictional tangibility to the urban legend of the Ring tape. But whatever, maybe Watts finally realized that these things actually killed people. One thing leads to another and Watts is bent on stopping Samara once and for all.
There is a lot of screaming “SAMARAAAA!!” and about 3,426 repetitions of “hold on Aidan, mommy’s here”. This easily constitutes a good 98% of the dialogue. Inbetween, there is a buttload of CG effects that are so sloppily grafted into the movie that they’re painful to watch. Perhaps the most infamous of these is the reindeer scene in which 40 deer decide to come out of the woods and attack mother and son in their little car. Instead of the cheaper alternative of just training reindeer to smash stuff, the makers of this film opted to have CG deer attack a CG car and have CG glass fly everywhere. Horrible, horrible stuff. Samara apparently has the power to control not only water, but woodland creatures as well. And there’s a lot of water flying around, too. CG water that swirls and spins and looks like a messed up version of the Bellagio fountain show. Wooooooooo.
Is there any redeeming thing about this movie? No. I hate it.