Thursday Night Movie Club
The Ring Two
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Release Date: March 18, 2005

Director: Hideo Nakata
Naomi Watts
Simon Baker
David Dorfman
Elizabeth Perkins
Gary Cole
Sissy Spacek
Ryan Merriman
Emily VanCamp
Kelly Overton
James Lesure
Daveigh Chase
Kelly Stables
Cooper Thornton
Marilyn McIntyre
Jesse Burch
Rachel Keller
Max Rourke
Aidan Keller
Dr. Emma Temple
Martin Savide
Samara (archive footage)
Evil Samara
Father of Emily
Mother of Emily
Male Reporter
The Ring Two movie poster
Naomi Watts as Rachel in The Ring 2 About the only thing interesting about The Ring Two is the title. By spelling out the word "Two", the graphic designers get to use the "O" graphic twice. Unfortunately, its all down hill from there.

In the sequel to the very eerie and box office success to The Ring, the first question that comes to mind while watching this movie is "Why?". Other than to capitalize on the box office receipts, there really is no purpose to this movie. It is no where near as good as the original. In fact, this version is rather boring.

The Ring Two starts pretty much the same as The Ring. A couple of high school teens are all alone. The boy tries to talk his new girl friend into watching this video. He has ulterior motives. The girl pulls out a "surprise" by playing the video without watching it. The boy promptly dies. The idea here is that if you watch the tape, you must get someone else to watch it within a 7-day period to save your life. Riveting, ain't it!

The fact that the opening sequence is not riveting spells doom for the rest of the movie.

Rachel and her son Aiden have flown the coop from Seattle to Oregon. You'd think they would have gotten as far away as possible rather than a quick trip down the road. Oh well, that's what I get for thinking. Rachel has taken a job at the local newspaper and her big city mentality puts her at odds with her co-workers. When the call comes in about the mishap between the teens, Rachel is the only one in the office interested enough to check out the police report. There must be a lot more interesting stories for the rest of the newsroom to cover than a teen's mysterious death.

Photo of Naomi Watts as Rachel and David Dorfman as Aiden in The Ring 2What happens through the rest of this movie is a hodgepodge of "suspenseful" scenes: Rachel and Aiden are attacked by crazed deer, Aiden takes photos in a fairground restroom that show the Evil Samara walking closer to him; a bathtub fills with water and fills an entire bathroom up to the rafters. None of this is adequately explained. Like The Grudge, this comes off as a college graduate's thesis, an exercise in filmmaking.

Naomi Watts, who is in just about every scene, makes the movie work. She is just good enough of an actress to make us believe in the events of this movie. The only other actress to shine is Sissy Spacek, who does a wonderful job portraying Samara's "real" mother, now locked away in a mental institution for recognizing the evil in her child and trying to destroy Samara.

Photo of Naomi Watts as Rachel and Kelly Stables as SamaraThe original movie had a purpose: Rachel was investigating the images quickly shown on a videotape. It was a mystery surrounded by a horror story. The sequel has no such purpose, except to try to close the loop. Rachel inadvertently released Samara, now she tries to contain Samara in her well of a prison. I guess only lawyers would find this loophole interesting.

The interesting note on this movie is that it was directed by Hideo Nakata, the original director of the Japanese version. I guess Hollywood took over and just employed him as a "hired gun". It would be a really good exercise to overcome the sophomoric script written by Ehren Kruger.

Some movies should never be made into sequels. Along with the Jaws sequels, this is one of them.

The Ring ended with some very interesting questions unanswered. I would have thought that the sequel would resolve these. "How did the videotape get made?" and "How does the video kill its audience?". I guess I will have to wait for "De Ring Tree" (Chicago-speak).