Franchise Weekend – The Ring 2 (2005)

Director: Hideo Nakata

Writer: Ehren Kruger (Screenplay) Koji Suzuki (Novel)

Starring: Naomi Watts, Simon Baker, David Dorfman, Elizabeth Perkins, Gary Cole, Sissy Spacek, Ryan Merriman

 

Plot: 6 months after the incidents involving the lethal videotape, new clues prove that there is a new evil lurking in the darkness.


Tagline – Fear comes full circle.

Runtime: 1 Hour 50 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Weaker Sequel

 

Story: The Ring 2 starts as Rachel (Watts) and her son Aidan (Dorfman) have set up to start a new life after the events of the first film, Rachel in a small paper, while Aidan has taken after his father, with his love of photography.

When the town has its own video tape going around, killing people, Rachel decides to burn the tape, which only draws the attention of Samara again, as she sees her son targeted by Samara, with Rachel needing to get to the bottom of the tape once again.

 

Thoughts on The Ring 2

 

Characters – Rachel has moved her child to a smaller town to start a new life away from the pain of the previous one. she gets a new job, only for the first day on the job, Samara takes her next victim. Wanting to stop the spread of the curse in this new town, Rachel destroys the video tape, only to see herself become the target once again of Samara. Rachel will need to continue the investigation into who Samara was and why she is still haunting the world. Max is one of the co-workers at the newspaper, he isn’t trying to hit on Rachel, but does become the only person that Rachel can turn too. Aidan is the son that has started to take after his father with his love of photography, he does become the target of Samara, we see two different sides to David in this film. Dr Temple is trying to figure out what has been happening to Aidan, first seeing that it could be child abuse, she needs to make sure the child is safe before anything else.

PerformancesNaomi Watts is still strong in the leading role, we need her to show extra motherly emotions in the film this time around. Simon Baker doesn’t get a chance to get going in this film, while David Dorfman does make a big improvement because of the extra additions to his character. The supporting cast are not the strongest either with most getting left to limited screen time.

StoryThe story here continues to see Rachel haunted by Samara needing to continue to unlock the truth about Samara to save her own son from her curse. Now this is a confusing as for a story because everything felt pretty wrapped up at the end of the film, this did end up just putting a forced sequel out there which tries to build more on the Samara legacy. Where this falls short in the story as by giving us weak supporting characters, having the events literally start the day Rachel arrives in the new town and going against certain things that happen in the first film.

Horror/MysteryThe horror in the film does give us basic moments of scares, though dream sequences a hoping the same jumps can worked in the first film. the mystery continues to look at the mystery about Samara and why she has continued to haunt people.

SettingsThe film was moved to a smaller location, while returning to certain other locations with them being an extra clue involved in the film.

Special EffectsThe effects in the film have dated already, you can see certain green screens being used, which were meant for uneasy scenes.


Scene of the Movie –
The bath surprise.

That Moment That Annoyed Me The dated effects.

Final ThoughtsThis is a weaker sequel that tries to build up on the original legacy, only to dive further into something we didn’t need to get more about what is happening.

 

Overall: Simple and weak sequel.

Rating

 

 

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James Bond Month – Goldfinger (1964)

Director: Guy Hamilton

Writer: Richard Maibaum, Paul Dehn (Screenplay)

Starring: Sean Connery, Honor Blackman, Gert Frobe, Shirley Eaton, Tania Mallet, Harold Sakata, Bernard Lee

 

Plot: Investigating a gold magnate’s smuggling, James Bond uncovers a plot to contaminate the Fort Knox gold reserve.

 

Tagline – Miss Honey and Miss Galore Have James Bond Back For More!

Runtime: 1 Hour 50 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Enjoyable

 

Story: Goldfinger starts when James Bond (Connery) gets his latest assignment, to follow a mysterious man Goldfinger (Frobe) who has built up a reputation of dealing in gold, one that may well be illegal, James’ must get close and plays into his competitive nature before learning about his operation.

Being caught in the middle of solid dealings and annoying Goldfinger, Bond continues his investigation which shows us just how deadly Goldfinger’s henchman Oddjob (Sakata) is and how Goldfinger’s connection go worldwide.

 

Thoughts on Goldfinger

 

Characters – James Bond is the guy we know, he breaks into hotel rooms to sleep with women, uses his charm to seduce others. This time he starts his own investigation into a mysterious smuggler, getting up close and personal to him hoping to let the rest of team to follow the trails he leaves. Goldfinger is a competitive gold smuggler who has grabbed the attention of the governments across the globe, we learn early on that he will kill the people that cross him including leaving his trademark gold paint behind, his latest job will see him take on the world’s biggest gold reserve. Pussy Galore is a pilot that is instrumentally to Goldfinger’s plans which will includes her skill set. Oddjob is the henchman for Goldfinger, he uses his hat to kill people, making him one of the first and most memorable of all of the henchmen.

Performances –Sean Connery in the leading role once again is good for the most part, he has the charm needed for the whole film. Gert Frobe brings us a different type of villain to the franchise, he makes the character seem likable on the outside while having his motive kept below a smile. Honor Blackman does a solid job even if for some reason we get a total of three bond girls in this film. Harold Sakata brings us the first truly memorable henchman which soon became the key to the success of the Bond franchise.

StoryThe story here puts James Bond on his latest mission, this time there isn’t a connection to the previous two like the last two and this is refreshing because this being a solo story we get to see how James operates. The negatives in the story come from seeing him so close to the villain for most of the film with most of the film being him trying to get a message out about where he is. It is strange though because I did enjoy this one more than the last two because this is one that can be picked up without needing to see anything in the franchise before. Simply put this is one that can be enjoyed as a casual viewer because of how simple the story unfolds.

Action/AdventureThe action in this film does feel toned down from the previous films, simple enough action related material, while the adventure does take Bond around the world next to the Goldfinger.

SettingsWe get plenty of settings which all relate to the idea of where you would find gold, this is perfect for the idea the film is needed.


Scene of the Movie –
Oddjob.

That Moment That Annoyed Me The final twist

Final ThoughtsThis is one of the fun James Bond movies, it isn’t connected to the rest of the franchise which does help make it enjoyable.

 

Overall: Fun Bond movie.

Rating