The Ring (2002)
Dreamworks Written by Ehren Kruger & Hiroshi Takahashi (Ringu)
Horror, Supernatural Directed by Gore Verbinski
$48,000,000 Starring Naomi Watts, Martin Henderson, Brian Cox

The Ring is a 2002 film about a video tape that causes the person who watched it to receive a disturbing phone call and die seven days later. Rachel Keller (Naomi Watts) is a journalist who is investigating an urban legend about a killer video tape after her teenage niece dies suddenly under uncertain circumstances.

Rachel finds out that her niece had stayed in a cabin a week before her death, and she finds the cursed tape in the lobby. Rachel watches the cursed video, and receives the mysterious phone call. Rachel meets up with Noah, who is the father of her son and who is also a journalist, and he ends up watching the tape and getting involved.

There are a lot of beautiful scenes in this movie and it is filled with flowing shots of the landscape in between the tense discovery scenes where Rachel is tracking down the story of the tape. The tone is dark and often almost devoid of colour. The Ring is considered one of the scariest movies ever made and has an famous jump scare at the beginning of the film.

Naomi Watts.
Beautiful and haunting scenery.
Tracking down the orgion of the tape.
Martin Henderson as Noah.

When the film was released in 2002, DVD was just starting to replace VHS as the primary format of home video, and VHS and video stores were still very common. The studio took advantage of the cursed movie during the marketing campaign and ran an edited version as a commercial without explaining that it was for a movie. Paramount also put copies of it under the seats in some theaters in the US and Canada. Paramount also had unlabeled copies of the tape in public places before the movie had even been announced. In 2002 only about 60% of households had internet access, and social media websites were not in place. Because of this, it was not as easy as it is today to instantly find any type of information or even view videos online, and The Ring's marketing campaign was largely successful in creating a lot of attention around the film.

Samara is based on an (pronounced 'onryo') Japanese folk lore. She is a spirit focused on vengeance. Samara's water soaked face is not revealed until the very end of the movie which adds to the tension.

The famous well scene.


I only watched this movie recently for the first time and I was impressed with how beautiful the outdoor scenes were shot, which is sometimes rare in horror. I like how the jump scares are not false. What is a false jump scare? You know the kind where there is a loud noise and something jumps into frame, but this ends up not being the monster? Usually it is the victims sister, a dog, a police officer, that sort of thing. In The Ring, the jump scare IS the monster. Everything in this movie scares me. Sumara, the well, and of course the cursed video.

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