Newest Reviews
Jailbreak Pact
News of the World
Beyond Clueless
Stylist, The
Sky is On Fire, The
Wrong Turn
In a Year with 13 Moons
Strange Affair of Uncle Harry, The
Sinners, The
Tammy and the T-Rex
State Secret
Mogul Mowgli
Owners, The
Twentieth Century, The
Story of Gilbert and Sullivan, The
What Lies Below
Dead Pigs
Willy's Wonderland
It's in the Air
School's Out Forever
Stump the Guesser
Last Warning, The
Ascent, The
Hurt by Paradise
Saint Maud
Johnny Frenchman
Glitch in the Matrix, A
Meeting the Man: James Baldwin in Paris
Newest Articles
Bzzzt: Pulse on Blu-ray
The Tombs Will Be Their Cities: Demons and Demons 2 on Arrow
Somebody Killed Her Husband: Charade on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Maroc 7 and Invasion
Network Double Bills: The Best of Benny Hill and The Likely Lads
Network Double Bills: Some Girls Do and Deadlier Than the Male
Absolutely Bananas: Link on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Hawk the Slayer and The Medusa Touch
The Price of Plague: The Masque of the Red Death on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Seance on a Wet Afternoon and Ring of Spies
Chaney Chillers: Inner Sanctum Mysteries - The Complete Film Series on Blu-ray
Adelphi Extras: Stars in Your Eyes on Blu-ray
Toons for the Heads: Fantastic Planet and Adult Animation
Nature Girl: The New World on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Perfect Friday and Robbery
Network Double Bills: The House in Nightmare Park and The Man Who Haunted Himself
Newley Minted: The Strange World of Gurney Slade on Blu-ray
Bad Love: The Night Porter on Blu-ray
Brevity is the Soul of Weird: Short Sharp Shocks on Blu-ray
Get Your Ass to Mars: Total Recall on Blu-ray
Call the Professionals: Le Cercle Rouge on Blu-ray
When There's No More Room in Hell: Dawn of the Dead on Blu-ray
The Butterfly Effect: Mothra on Blu-ray
Living Room Theatre: Play for Today Volume 1 on Blu-ray
Didn't He Do Well: The Bruce Forsyth Show on DVD
  Ring You've Been Framed
Year: 1998
Director: Hideo Nakata
Stars: Nanako Matsushima, Hiroyuki Sanada, Miki Nakatani, Yuko Takeuchi
Genre: Horror, ThrillerBuy from Amazon
Rating:  7 (from 3 votes)
Review: There's a story going around about this mysterious videotape. Some teenagers watched what was on it, and they immediately received a phone call saying they only had one week to live... and they did. But that's only a tall story, right? That's what Tomoko thought when she told her best friend about it when she was over one night; alone in the house they attempted to scare each other, but in a jokey way, until the telephone rang. It was only her mother checking up on her, and the girls laughed that they had fooled themselves - or had they?

Director Hideo Nakada's extremely creepy horror was a big hit in Japan, adapted from the first in a series of popular novels there, and gained a following in the West, indeed across the world, as one chiller not to watch late at night or on your own - or both, for that matter. In Western terms, if you took Scream, replace the killer with the TV set from Poltergeist and add the type of folklore of The Blair Witch Project, then you'll have the starting point for Ring. If anything Ring capitalised on the urban myths that proliferated, the ones whose sole aim was to frighten the living daylights out of you.

That was because they had that patina of possible truth, of course, so imagine if those biscuits you were eating on the train really did belong to the passenger opposite, or that granny really had tried to dry off her newly bathed poodle in the microwave with terrible results. Except Nakata had his own ready-made myth to conjure with here, and it all rested upon that strange videotape that places a curse on you should you be unlucky - or simply curious - enough to watch it. The film took its time, but stick with it past the first revelation of what was on that tape and you would be rewarded.

It found its fear in mundane, everyday objects like televisions, telephones, cameras and cassettes, many of them soon to be obsolete-looking as the 21st century dawned: the paraphernalia of the banal which mixed with the supernatural rendered the whole yarn oddly convincing within the confines of the movie, and that was all that mattered. If anything, that backstory about psychics and murder was overexplaining the affair, as if once they had that killer idea they couldn't leave it alone; its strength was in the simplicity of its central idea, so it was one of those films where it's better not to know too much about it before you watch it. Naturally, with the film ending the way it did, that became more difficult to do with time.

Especially in the light of the similarly successful, but inferior in every way, American remake, which had the impression of being so excited by its tricks that it overstated where the Japanese had understated, so if you truly did not know the outcome and were curious, you would be recommended to stick with the original. As it was, like many a ghost story Ring was a detective tale, as journalist Nanako Matsushima found her interest piqued and paid the price, bringing in her ex-husband Hiroyuki Sanada and their small son into the nightmare. With just a week to go before she received that fateful phone call spelling her doom, the whole thing becomes a race against time, except that what they do not know is there is one crucial piece of the puzzle missing. Some have seen this as an example of the guilt Japanese society feels over their broken homes, more likely you'll see a subtle but inexorably building terror movie which spawned countless imitators, and all without a drop of gore. Music by Kenji Kawai.

Aka: Ringu
Reviewer: Graeme Clark


This review has been viewed 6566 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

Review Comments (0)

Untitled 1

Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf
Darren Jones
Andrew Pragasam
Stately Wayne Manor
Enoch Sneed
  Geraint Morgan


Last Updated: