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Japan 1998
produced by
Takashige Ichise, Shinya Kawai, Takenori Sento, Masato Hara (exetutive) for Kadokawa Shoten, Omega Project/Toho
directed by Hideo Nakata
starring Nanako Matsushima, Hiroyuki Sanada, Miki Nakatani, Yuko Takeushi, Hitomi Sato, Yoichi Numata, Yutaka Matsushige, Katsumi Muramatsu, Rikiya Otaka, Masako
screenplay by Hiroshi Takahashi, based on the novel by Koji Suzuki, music by Kenji Kawai


review by
Mike Haberfelner

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There is an urban legend that says that somewhere out there there is a video that kills you within 7 days after watching it. Nosey reporter Reiko (Nanako Matsushima), who had a death in her family linked to that video, wants to get to the bottom of it all, & soon finds the video, watches it, receives a phonecall immediately afterwards stating "You saw it" (part of the same urban legend), & suddenly knows she is doomed, with only 7 more days to live. Out of despair, she calls her ex-husbband Ryuji (Hiroyuki Sanada), who watches the video, too, before they try to find clues to end the video's deadly curse - though they have nothing to go on but the video itself, &, to make matters worse, Yoichi (Rikiya Otaka), their son soon watches the video, too. Still they soon come across the story of Shizuko (Masako), a mystic woman on remote island Oshima who did predict volcanic eruptions 40 years ago & was soon abused as a media attraction by a professor & one day jumped into a volcano. As it turns out, she had a daughter, Sadako, though, who had much greater mystic (or as we would say today, ESP) powers than her & could kill by thought alone. She was thrown into a well though by her father & left there to die - but her fury was manifested on the cursed videotape. With time running out & Reiko's death only hours away, she & Ryuji race to said well & try to set Sadako's spirit free after 40 years. In the nick of time, they find the poor girl's corpse, & Reiko doesn't die after all, seemingly Sadako's spirit was laid to rest ...

The next day though, Ryuji dies the very same way all other victims of the cursed video died. Could Reiko just have been saved because she copied & passed on the video ?


One of the very few great horror movies of the 1990's, Ringu - already the 2nd adaptation of Koji Suzuki's not so great novel - works precisely because of its relative lack of special effects or fancy but meaningless camerawork, instead relying on a deliberately slow pace, atmospheric direction and the ability to tell a complete story despite leaving many a question unanswered.

It did spawn 3 sequels (Rasen/Spiral, Ringu 2 & Ringu 0) plus a tv series as well as a Korean remake (Ring Virus), none of it equalling this movie's quality, though. Then, in 2002 the airheads of DreamWorks in America thought it a good idea to do an American remake with WASP-actors as to not overtax the viewers with Asians in a good movie. Don't watch that one, though !!!


review © by Mike Haberfelner


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On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide


A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD



Stell Dir vor, Deine Lieblingsseifenoper birgt eine tiefere Wahrheit ...
... und stell Dir vor, der Penner von der U-Bahnstation hat doch recht ...
... und dann triffst Du auch noch die Frau Deiner (feuchten) Träume ...


Und an diesem Tag geht natürlich wieder einmal die Welt unter!!!


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