The Ring 2 (US Version)
The Ring 2 is supposed to take up where The Ring left off. In the first movie, Rachel Keller (Naomi Watts) investigated the urban legend of a cursed video tape - anyone who watches it dies in seven days. Believing she has destroyed all the tapes, Rachel and her eerie kid Aiden (David Dorfman) have fled the big city and moved to a sleepy Oregon town where she takes a job at the local newspaper and acts like the boss. The boss (Simon Baker) acts a like a copy boy. Life is good, so the scene is set for Samara (Daveigh Chase) to make her big comeback through the TV and leave some disposable dude with a twisted face.
But this time Samara isn’t just after video victims. She wants – God help us – a mommy.
Directed by Hideo Nakata, (who also directed the original Japanese movie Ringu, and confusingly Ringu 2) this movie takes one utterly implausible turn after another, getting so deep into Dark Water territory that it’s hard to tell where Jennifer Connelly leaves off and Watts begins. Hideo Nakata swore it seemed like a good idea at the time, but it doesn’t look like he is back for The Ring 3.
Suspected by hospital staff of abusing her hypothermic son, Watts goes off in search of Samara’s roots, back to the island where Samara was raised in the roof of a barn. Gary Cole delivers the film’s one great performance as a sleazy real estate agent, and Rachel absconds with a scrapbook – proving it is OK to steal to save your spooky kid.
The scrapbook leads Rachel to Samara’s birth mother, who now resides in a psych ward. This is a cute cameo by veteran horror chick Sissy Spacek, armed with scissors. There Rachel learns that Samara is scared of water because the mommies in her life had a habit of drowning her in it. It seems more reasonable to assume she would be scared of mommies.
The only way to get Samara out of her weird kid’s system is to drown him. Rachel knows Aiden is possessed by Samara because he is acting strange. Only a mommy could tell.
All through this movie, there is water, water everywhere – and actually Samara seems to like it. But the kid dunking works, and the boy is saved, only now Rachel must do battle with Samara in the well. After bleating ‘mommy’ at her and giving her a pleading look from an eye that no longer resembles a red and white striped humbug, it seems Samara is still set on living happily ever after with Rachel.
As Samara chases the escaping Rachel up the walls of the well (dumb kid forgot to close it) her spider like movements are rather well done. Rachel gets to deliver her best line in the whole movie – “I’m not your ****ing mommy!” – as she slams the lid on Samara. Is it all over? Uhuh. Ring 3, remember?
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