the ragin' asian reviews the ring two

i'm not the biggest horror movie fan, but i enjoy getting scared at the movies as much as the next person. which is why the first ring was such a pleasant surprise. not only was it a good scare, but i thought that it was a genuinely good movie. i haven't seen the original japanese version, but i would imagine it's creepier since it contains the generally creepy looking japanese people (creepy from a western point of view of course, not to imply that japanese people are inherently creepy, but to us westerners, i think japanese people look like oversized muppets, unless of course, you're viewing the horse mpeg, but you'll have to look elsewhere for that).

anyways, i was ambivelent about the ring two since sequals usually suck. from what i could tell, naomi watts was somehow contractually bound to be a part of the second movie, and thank god, cuz the movie would have really sucked without her. it's not that it just out and out sucked, but it was everything a cliched sequel usually entails. that is, the movie concentrates on the most memorable aspects of the first movie while not really trying to come up with something interesting. in this case, that means concentrating on the creepy kid, the imagery of the cursed movie, and of course, the monster/ghost of samara. and while there were the usual scary moments, they seemed to be more standard startle you type than being cerebrally creepy like in the first one or say, a silence of the lambs. anyways, apparently most of the money went to paying sissy spacek for her two minutes of screen time, since it was very obvious that none of it went to the screenplay. there's some pretty bad dialogue in this one and the general story requires a couple of leaps of faith. i'm usually pretty good about suspending my disbelief, but there were just too many points in the movie where i found myself saying, "what?" or "that's just stupid" for me to give this a really good review. it's a horror movie, so i'm not sure i can recommend this for a dvd rental since horror movies are always better in the theater at night, but like i said, it wasn't a horrible flick. it's just that the previous one set such a high standard, and this one didn't even come close. final grade: B-

bonus movie related blog material! - before the movie, they showed the trailer for the upcoming adaptation of the documentary doggtown and the z-boys, lords of doggtown. i for one, am pretty excited about it, because as much as i loved the documentary, you can tell that stacy peralta, the guy who put together the documentary, was really more of a skater than a storyteller. it seemed that there was probably more drama that was glossed over in the documentary. anyways, a regular movie should be able to make it a bit more compelling with crative license and what not. anyways, in last sunday's LA times, there was a story about the movie in the calendar section about the fact that the movie is being directed by a female, catherine hardwick (thirteen was her previous well known movie). first of all, i think that it's interesting and great that a woman is helming a movie about such a typically masculine subject. anyways, the story focuses on how she became a mother figure for the cast and crew of the movie, not so interesting and great. instead of an article about her vision of the movie or the rigors of recreating a past cultural phenomenon, the story focuses on how the males related to the female by viewing her as a maternal figure. anyways, i won't bore you with a sermon, but instead of writing a story about how a woman is breaking barriers, he/she wrote a story about a woman that uses her traditional feminine qualities with kids.

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