Review Date: March 21, 2005
Director: Hideo Nakata
Writer: Ehren Kruger
Producers: Laurie MacDonald, Walter F. Parkes
Naomi Watts as Rachel
Simon Baker as Max
David Dorfman as Aidan
In this unnecessary sequel, the boy and the mother from the first film have moved to a new city, in order to escape the wretched Samara (the long-haired chick who popped out of TV sets in the first flick). In this go-around, she’s still pissed off at the world, but this time, it has little to do with videotapes and more to do with mommies. Either way, the film stinks on ice and should scare no one. Crap ensues.
One shit movie. I knew that I was in trouble early on when the lead “creepy kid” in the film started calling his mother by her first name ‘Rachel’. I’m not really sure why, but it really pissed me off. I felt like smacking the ungrateful brat and asking him to offer his elders some respect! It didn’t help that he wouldn’t answer any questions that his mother ever asked him, or acted with any conviction. I’m not one to knock child actors in my reviews, and I’m sure this kid is a nice boy in real life, but his character in this movie might have been one of the most annoying characters that I have watched on screen in a very long time. Of course, the stink of this film isn’t related entirely to the kid, but unfortunately for the audience, the moviemakers decided to concentrate the whole movie around this lifeless brat and his moron mom, with almost no other character focus whatsoever. Add that to the fact that the mom in question, the lovely Naomi Watts, basically walks around with the exact same look on her face during the entire movie (part-frightened, part-worried, part-what-the-shit-am-I-doing-in-this-movie), and we’re stuck with two characters for whom I could care less, and a story with zero interest or energy to it. What kind of idiot mom lets her kid walk around in a flea market on his own and what kind of hospital allows a child to walk away with no problem? This follow-up to the very successful, and quite creepy, THE RING, opens with a tease scene that attempts to ape the original’s potent start, but actually “cuts away” when the scary part comes up (I’d like to offer an FU-13 to the lovely folks at PG-13). It then downshifts into a series of boring sequences in which mom and son are essentially dodging a “boogeyman”, mind-bogglingly leaving the entire cool “watching the videotape and dying” phenomenon, in its dust.
Nothing about this movie is scary, including an idiotic scene in which deer charge into a moving car (no joke), water floats to the ceiling of a bathroom (this looks cool, but what does it have to do with the movie again?) and a CGI ‘Samara’ character bolts out of TV sets every now and again (is that really all you could come up with?). Secondary characters played by Elizabeth Perkins, Sissy Spacek and the great Gary Cole are embarrassingly thinly written, and should make great cases for all three actors to drop their respective agents (anyone off the street could have played those bullshit parts). Does anybody even die in this movie? Barely. It’s basically just a series of lame sequences featuring the annoying kid constantly referring to his mother by her first name (and I mean…constantly!), Watts walking around, talking to herself (“That must be why she’s mad at me”—Yawn!) and a couple of directing camera tricks that, at certain points, felt like an arty college student trying to impress. I stress the word “trying”. And if you’ve never seen the original RING, get ready to be entirely confused as references to everyone and everything from the first movie, litter this crappy sequel. Lame, lame, lame. This movie was an utter disappointment, a lazy sequel and featured zero scares. I wish someone had slapped the video from the first movie into my theater’s reel so that I could have avoided having to sit through the rest of this boring disaster. Oh yeah, they also pussied out on the ending…we all know how it really should have concluded. Ringu this, man…now fuck off!
(c) 2016 Berge Garabedian