Our 31 Days Of Horror countdown continues at Last Movie Outpost.
Original Japanese horror is some of the best in the world. When I first saw Ringu, it honestly scared the living daylights out of me! All I knew about the movie was that someone saw a video and seven days later they would die. It was remade in the US as The Ring.
I remember actually borrowing the VHS tape from a friend who had recorded it from the Film 4 movie channel. One evening I waited until it was dark, put headphones on, turned all the lights off, and watched it.
I’m sure you now know the story of The Ring thanks to the US remake, which wasn’t as good, but as I said, I knew nothing at the time.
It starts off with two girls. One is telling the story of the videotape and how, if you watch it, you end up dead. The opening was really creepy and really well done. From here on in it got worse, much scarier.
A newspaper reporter hears about the story and starts to investigate it. She finds out where the tape was from and, surprise-surprise, ends up watching it! She now has seven days to figure out what is going on and how to stop herself from dying.
The movie is masterfully directed by Hideo Nakata. What is great about his direction is that he sets up a scare, only to then disappoint with a fake out, only to then throw in a scare where it’s not expected. It is brilliantly done.
There are some surreal images. One is that if you have seen the video, then when you have your photo taken your face becomes distorted. It’s a very subtle part of the movie but still freaks me out a little.
I’m sure you know the story now, but they find the body of young Sadako and you think it’s all good and a happy ending. However, the story doesn’t stop and carries on following one of the main protagonists. He is sat at home and you’re still wondering why we are with him.
His TV turns itself on. The well appears on the screen. Sadako climbs out of the well and walks towards the camera. She then climbs out of the TV! Since I knew nothing about the movie, I remember actually squirming on the sofa, it was so well done!
I remember my friend saying to me:
“The first 80 minutes are creepy, the last 10 minutes will scare you!”
He wasn’t wrong. The story played out so well and made you believe all was well, only to then give you the last 10 minutes with one of the scariest scenes I’ve ever seen!
On a side note, I remember my friend telling me not to watch the Mark Kermode introduction for Film 4, he basically gives away the ending when introducing the movie! I have hated the pretentious bellend ever since. It is at 2′ 50″ in.
*End Of Spoilers*
As I said, I’m sure most of you know the story by now, which is a shame since the first viewing of Ringu was something that has stuck with me for a long time. I love it as a horror movie.
It is still worth a watch. I did re-visit last year and it wasn’t as good as that first time, but it was still a very well-made, creepy movie. If you’re not a fan of subtitles, the US remake (The Ring) is still pretty good, but it is a remake. Nothing beats the original.