The Ring Vs. Ringu

In Case You Were Wondering (SPOILER WARNING- Spoilers contained!)
Someone recently asked me for a comparison between the current box office treat “The Ring” and the original Japanese version, “Ringu.”
I’m told the two films are remarkably similiar. There are several scenes from the original precisely duplicated in the remake. But there are several large differences in the overall plot which bear mentioning. I will concentrate on Ringu, assuming that you’ve either seen the remake or read the reviews.
Ringu is much lower budget film, and it shows. It looks like a 70s B-movie. The better to creep you out with, my dear.
In Ringu, several of the characters have psychic powers and this is integral to the plotline. There is no ‘horse farm’ subplot. The little girl’s mother is a psychic who becomes famous for predicting the eruption of a volcano. A Dr. Ikuma becomes her ‘manager’ as she tries to make some money off the publicity. The little girl, called Sadako in this version, inherits her mother’s psychic ability but is far more powerful – she can kill a person by willing it to happen (she also doesn’t speak in Ringu, adding to her mystery). And the reporter’s husband is also psychic, which aids him in solving the riddle of the videotape.
The videotape itself looks better in the new version but is far more effective in Ringu. It is limited to a series of six or so nonrepetitive images. The oval mirror scene occurs in both, as does the well scene. Other than that the two videotapes are very different.
Ringu relies on sound effects to create mood, much moreso than Ring. The sound effects in Ringu, especially during the videotape, enhance the creepiness factor immensely.
As to the actors…well, the acting in Ringu is pretty low-key. The direction is fast-paced and the screenplay doesn’t haveot a great deal of character development.
But as a horror/suspense film, Ringu is the better of the two. If you want to see it, you can get the VCDs and VHS tapes on Ebay now. I have also heard that next year there will be a Region 1 DVD produced.
And there you go!