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Ring (1998) [DVD] [2000]

Nanako Matsushima , Miki Nakatani , Hideo Nakata    Suitable for 15 years and over   DVD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (154 customer reviews)
Price: 6.07 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Product details

  • Actors: Nanako Matsushima, Miki Nakatani, Yko Takeuchi, Hitomi Sat, Yichi Numata
  • Directors: Hideo Nakata
  • Writers: Hiroshi Takahashi, Kji Suzuki
  • Producers: Makoto Ishihara, Masato Hara, Shin'ya Kawai, Takashige Ichise, Takenori Sent
  • Format: Anamorphic, PAL
  • Language: Japanese
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Tartan
  • DVD Release Date: 19 Mar 2001
  • Run Time: 91 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (154 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000058CB6
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 15,719 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)



A major box office hit in the Far East, Hideo Nakada's Ring is a subtly creepy Japanese ghost story with an urban legend theme, based on a series of popular teen-appeal novels by Susuki Koji. Far less showy than even the restrained chills of The Blair Witch Project or The Sixth Sense, Ring has nevertheless become a mainstream blockbuster and has already been followed by Ring 2 and the prequel Ring 0. A Hollywood remake is in the works.

Investigating the inexplicable, near-simultaneous deaths of her young niece and three teenage friends, reporter Asakawa (Nanako Matsushima) learns of a story about a supernaturally cursed video-tape circulating among school kids. As soon as anyone has watched the tape, allegedly recorded by mistake from a dead TV channel, the telephone rings and the viewer has exactly a week to live. Those doomed are invisibly marked, but their images are distorted if photographed. Inevitably, Asakawa gets hold of the tape and watches it. The enigmatic collage of images include a coy woman combing her hair in a mirror, an old newspaper headline about a volcanic eruption, a hooded figure ranting, people crawling and a rural well. When the phone rings (a memorably exaggerated effect), Asakawa is convinced that the curse is active and calls in her scientist ex-husband Ryuji (Hiroyuki Sanada) to help. He watches a copy of the video a day after Asakawa is exposed and willingly submits himself to the curse. Even more urgency is added to their quest when their young son is unwittingly duped, apparently by the mystery woman from the tape, into watching the video too, joining the queue for a supernatural death.

On the DVD: For a film made in the digital era, the letterboxed (16:9) print is in mediocre state, with a noticeable amount of scratching, though the Dolby Digital soundtrack is superb, making this a film that's as scary to listen to as it is to watch (the squeamish might find themselves covering their ears rather than their eyes in some scenes). Otherwise, there are trailers for the first two Ring films and Audition, 10 stills, filmographies for the principals, a review by Mark Kermode, blurb-like extracts from other reviews and the ominous option of playing Sadako's video after a solemn disavowal of responsibility from the distributors! --Kim Newman

Product Description

DVD Special Features: UK Exclusive Trailer
Mark Kermode Film Review
Interactive Menus
Stills Gallery
Star and Director Filmographies
Ring 2 Trailer

Language: Japanese Dolby Digital
Subtitles: English
Video Aspect Ratio: Anamorphic Widescreen

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
27 of 28 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Ring is that rarest of breeds, a genuinely scary horror movie. The writer and director have understood that "shock" is not "horror" and that the scariest things are not the ones that jump out at you but the psychological terrors that build up in your mind.
The story is straightforward: a group of teenagers have died under strange circumstances, seemingly scared to death. A rumour is going around that the deaths have something to do with a cursed videotape: you watch it, then, a week later, you die.
A journalist finds the video and watches it. Determined to get to the root cause, and beginning to believe in the curse, she and her ex-husband find themselves in a race against time to solve the mystery.
For most of the film, you feel that Ring is creepy rather than scary, a well-acted, well-directed mystery story rather than a full-on horror movie. There are no expensive special effects, and the film prefers to hint at its horrors rather than put them on full view.
The finale, though, is something else. Simple, effective, and devastatingly scary; the director know to let the suspense build, and let your imagination do the hard work. It was still scaring me a week after watching it...
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The greatest ghost story every told on film 1 July 2002
Format:VHS Tape
No blood, sex or swearing, and only one act of violence (which lasts all of four seconds and is seen from a distance). Nakata's 'Ring' isn't a horror movie -- it's a stunning example of that trickiest of genres, the ghost movie. They don't often work, but the ones that do are unforgettable -- think of 'The Innocents' or the original version of 'The Haunting.' 'Ring' might not have the psychological depth of those classics, but its malevolent atmosphere bears comparison with them, and ultimately it's scarier than either.
Like all the best ghost story tellers, Nakata spends almost the whole time hinting that he's going to scare the pants off you -- any minute now. There are numerous passages of uncanny creepiness, tension and anxiety, yet only one sequence of all-out terror. But that's all he needs; by the time it comes you're so unsettled that the pay-off is truly devastating. Best of all, Nakata goes for the standard 'just-when-you-think it's over' ploy, but in this case it's crucial to the plot rather than arbitrarily tagged on.
I watched the movie several days ago and it's still bothering me. I'm just glad I didn't watch it alone. M R James would have loved 'Ring', and there's no higher praise than that.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Eerie and Atomspheric 14 Mar 2007
This is what you call a decent 'horror' film. It does not rely on endless gore and a high body count in order to 'scare'. Instead, it relies on suspense, striking visual imagery and an airtight script to have viewers on the edge of their seat.

If gore's your bag, skip this, because it has none. Rather, it follows the story of a young journalist who, after the death of a young woman who watched a suspect video tape, begins to investigate the tape's origins. What she discovers is both unnerving and creepy.

This film's strong point is it's visual imagery, most notably in the tape itself, which is both weird and unpleasant. The plot ticks over nicely, providing just enough suspense to keep the viewer's interest piqued. The script is also strong, and it is very telling that this is the highest grossing Japanese horror film ever. It has also found global success, adding a much-deserved boom to the Japanese horror film industry, along with the equally sinister 'Grudge' and 'Audition', plus many other far more violent flicks.

This film is superbly directed, and the acting is also of a very high calibre, convincing and strong. The plot itself is very original, if a little far-fetched, but then, this is the horror genre, so it shouldn't make perfect sense anyway!

Please don't confuse this with the vastly inferior American remake, which massacres the original script and deviates wildly from the plot. Subtle Japanese film-making should not be tampered with by money-grabbing Western film-makers who have absolutely no artistic integrity whatsoever.

To conclude, this is an imaginative, frequently gripping and well directed horror, with an intelligent, thoughtful streak running right through it. It is well worth a few hours of your time!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Japanese cinema classic - prepare to be scared 23 Jan 2004
By Ruth Ludlam VINE VOICE
Ring, based on the novel by Koji Suzuki, is a masterpiece of suspense and psychological horror. It even spawned a kind of cult following in Japan, and I believe shops there actually sell little Sadako dolls. I must confess this is a film that, if you have any sensitivity at all, will stay with you. The soundtrack is particularly disturbing, so that even little everyday noises suddenly take on a sinister chill after you've seen this film. My best friend was practically weaned on Western horror films, and she's seen it all - or so she thought until I showed her this.
You can tell it's not a Western film - the premise relies a bit on the sort of mysticism that is perfectly normal in Eastern societies. The ex-husband has ESP and this 'abnormality' seems to have freaked the wife out too much, judging from a few remarks he makes. Also, people talk about curses and psychic powers quite readily and don't get laughed at as much as you'd expect.
But you don't have to suspend your disbelief, because Ring will suck you in with its atmosphere, although it holds back the most frightening stuff until the end. This can make the middle part of the film seem boring to those who are after quick thrills and shocks, and also the white subtitles sometimes get lost against light backgrounds, which can be irritating. But please don't give up at this stage, the end will make it all worthwhile. There is also brilliant acting all round, especially from the child who plays Yoichi. I also like the way the film uses the 'pathetic fallacy' of a bleak and rainy atmosphere (urban Tokyo) to add to the grim appearance of the film, but halfway through it throws that off entirely and moves to some really attractive locations.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Unnerving
Unnerving scary as hell ghost story. 2000 was the year main streamers discovered Japanese horror, and they liked it, a lot.
Published 1 month ago by Urthwild
5.0 out of 5 stars Top Suspense
Undoubtedly, one of the best suspense/horror movies I have ever seen. I recommend it to anyone who enjoys beautiful minimalistic cinema.
Published 6 months ago by Manuel Robim
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the finest horrors of all time
Long one of my favourite 'horror' films of all time (this and The Exorcist), I wish US directors took note of what made this film so good, and not rip it off while ruining it at... Read more
Published 9 months ago by Peter M
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome.
One of the scariest movies I have ever seen. Great movie for you and someone else to watch, because I can garantee you won't be able to survive this one your own.
Published 13 months ago by Liam
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the better horror films, a must see !
I was recommended this film by my brother who thought it was the scariest thing he'd ever seen, well I must admit I didn't find it as scary as he did - I watched it on my own in... Read more
Published 19 months ago by Mr. Martin Arscott
2.0 out of 5 stars I really dont understand the hype about this film?!!
I saw the American version of this movie, and I thought it was garbage.

I wanted to see the original. Read more
Published 19 months ago by Alexander The Great
3.0 out of 5 stars Great direction, rubbish film
Having seen the American version of this quite a few years ago and being scared sh*tless by it at the time I thought I'd put this on my list of scary movies to see. Read more
Published 22 months ago by TJH
5.0 out of 5 stars OMG!
Purchased this film after seeing the remake with Naomi Watts. This film scared the living daylights out of me and I had to sleep with the lights on that night and believe me I"m no... Read more
Published 22 months ago by MU
3.0 out of 5 stars Pre Cogs?
Ring is a classic example of the word hype. Together with Blair Witch Project these two movies certaintly had their fill. Read more
Published on 17 April 2012 by Colonel Decker
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best!
Was a bit gutted when I got the film and realised in was in Japanese but I watched it anyway. I'd like to think I was good with horror films, I've seen loads and rarely get... Read more
Published on 9 Mar 2012 by Carlyflower
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