Ringu 0 - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Ringu 0 Reviews

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Super Reviewer
½ March 11, 2007
More of a supernatural drama than anything else. It's a valiant effort to fit the film storyline to the storyline of the novels, but to be honest I'm not sure it worked all that well. As much as I hate to admit it, I found it rather dull for the most part.

I'm not surprised Sadako's so pissed off.
Super Reviewer
½ September 5, 2008
Ringu0 is haunting and beautiful. It's definatly the most seriously dramatic and passionate of the ring films. Saadako is represented as a person here with a dark side. But also a wanting side that wants to be forgiven and accepted and most importantly loved for her uncontrollable actions. Their are strong performances and the a vivid and secret spouting storyline that makes you look at each film completely different. In an age of mindless sequels Ring 0 is a perfect film. It balances horror with beauty and love with hate. The film is as much a tear jerker as a screamer. And the true story of what happened will stay with you!
Super Reviewer
April 19, 2008
I loved this film. It plays like a Greek tragedy that makes you really sympathize with Sadako. She wasn't always an unstoppable killing machine. Not only that, it has two scares that would surely go down in my top-ten best horror movie moments of all time.
Super Reviewer
December 25, 2006
Super Reviewer
November 24, 2006
A very stylish horror film with some great imagery, but I was expecting more...the build up of tension and suspense is tangible but let down by an unsatisfying ending. Just seeing a bunch of people keeling over for no reason in a copse seemed hugely anti-climactic to me...
Michael M.
Super Reviewer
½ June 18, 2010
I'm not a huge fan of horror films, except for a few exceptions: movies about disturbed children, like Children of the Corn; zombie films, which have really become a genre all to themselves; and J-horror. Not sure why these exceptions exist, but they do, and it's the inclusion of the J-horror exception that led me to the Ring cycle. The first film, Ringu, was an excellent entry in the genre, with a bizarre premise, creepy atmosphere, and genuine scares. Unfortunately the prequel, Ring 0: Birthday (the subtitle of which is never explained), simply isn't scary, necessary, or even all that interesting.

If you don't know the premise of the Ring films, it is about a curse in which the a disturbing video tape causes its viewer to die a week later. This film is set 30 years before the events of Ringu, with the origin of the creator of the curse. Sadako, the antagonist of the first film, is now an innocent and beautiful 19 year-old member of a theater troupe. We get to see her before she became the evil entity we know and love, with her role of a simple girl who loves acting and is falling in love with another member of the troupe. It's interesting to see...for about 10 minutes. Unfortunately this is the first hour of the movie. Stringed throughout are mentions of tapes with odd sounds, the whole troupe being cursed, and the existence of a second Sadako, but none of these elements have enough done with them to have them either make sense or be scary; would have been nice to have one of the two.

The film does pick up in the last half-hour with the part of the story anyone who has seen Ringu already knows. However, while it is good, it's really not in any way necessary, since anyone watching it probably already knows the events that inevitably unfold. While it is interesting to see it from Sadako's point of view, making the story more tragic than it already was, it's still not needed. Unnecessary prequels can work, like in the case of Underworld: Rise of the Lycans, if they are entertaining enough, and bring enough new material to the table. Ring 0 fails on this account in that the only new material brought forth isn't very interesting.

I think a better approach to this concept would have been exploring the entirety of Sadako's life, rather than this small chunk, or extending it into how the curse was developed. What we get instead isn't horrible, but it is very disappointing. I like the idea of Sadako's origin story, but the execution misses the mark. It gets points for trying, and for providing a good final 30 minutes, but overall it's not a necessary view.
Super Reviewer
½ May 25, 2007
Better than 2. Not as good as the first.
Super Reviewer
½ April 2, 2008
Interesting cross between Carrie and The Ring. I liked the way they kept Sadako both creepy and scary though the film does take a while to pick up steam. Also, it's one of the few films I recall where I really hoped just about everyone dies.
May 1, 2009
At times still creepy, Ringu 0 essentially moves us through the story of how Sadako developed from her beginnings as a mere outcast and psychic young woman to her later status as a vengeful spirit. While the film lacks the scares and creepy aura of the original, it is still a fun and bizarre adventure into the background of these characters.
July 12, 2012
I'm thankful we are mostly spared of the deadly video te storyline. why did that ever scare us. But not much here makes a whole lot of sense as a prequel to Ringu
April 25, 2012
A prequel that explains what in the fuck is going on in the first movie...avoid the other Rings stick with Ringu and Ring 0
October 22, 2011
I really liked this movie.
It's just too bad not a lot of people watched this after hating the second.
November 3, 2010
I have to note that I'm pretty much alone in my opinions of this film, so take that into consideration as you read; most others find this film to be akin to a horror-film Second Coming.

The sequel/prequel that's meant to sketch in Sadako's life pre-well is just a ton of wankery to me. I just couldn't care about anything in the film, as I know that no matter what they show me, it still ends with (SPOILERS) her being thrown into a well to become an evil force that kills via a video-tape in the films we've already seen. Plus the idea of ret-conning her as a helpless young girl who is eventually twisted into the villain we know just further complicating something that doesn't NEED it.

Pass, unless you're a completist.
½ June 10, 2009
Worst in the series, and one of the worst horrors I've seen, producing no scares whatsoever. This is a really terrible series which, high production value or not, would've been a bad movie experience altogether. The supernatural theme is rarely applied, and when it is it's in poor quality. It's more a badly acted, overlong dramatic pseudo horror really. Was I expecting too much from the series, or were they released straight to DVD or something?
June 16, 2010
This movie provides excellent back story and vital information to Sadako's past and motive.

It really makes you sympathize, and in my case, grow to love Sadako's character. If this was Nakata-sama's goal, than he has definitely achieved a great success.

I would most certainly recommend this movie to anyone looking for a good plot.
½ June 16, 2010
This movie is simply too painful to watch. I normally put more effort into writing reviews. However, there is honestly no other way to describe this film!
June 16, 2010
This movie shows how Sadako became evil and then was killed. Let me sum up the first hour, she is in an acting troupe where everyone thinks she is weird, the lead actress dies making Sadako the lead, she falls in love with the sound guy, heals him and another man at the hospital, and then get beaten to "death" by the cast after she flips out during the performance. Then we learn that Sadako was actually 2 beings, a nice sweet girl with psychic ability, and an evil little girl that was more like her real father; apparently she split when she was little and her doctor father kept the evil one a child. They are still connected though because in pictures of the older on you see the young one and the young one seems to be the one doing the killing. A reporter goes to kill the evil one hoping to stop all of it but because they brought the older one, the two recombined and she killed all of her acting troupe and her boyfriend, and then her father kills her and pushes her into the well like in all the others. But then we see that she heals herself at the bottom of the well and is still alive when her dad closes the well.
½ May 30, 2010
It was bound to happen and as you can tell by the inventive title Ringu 0 that this fourth entry into the Ringu franchise is a prequel to the original Ringu. There was so much back story to the curse of Sadako that the Ringu franchise was a prime candidate for prequel status. Like I've mentioned in reviews before I'm not a whole hearted fan of prequels, despite their popularity, due to the fact they tell a story that's main elements have already been told in previous films and that not much is left up to surprise. Like I expected Ringo 0 comes out completely predictable.

This entry tells the story how Sadako became the vengeful spirit she was in the previous films. Right away the film has definite different look compared to the other entries. Those films go for a sharp, polished look where the filmmakers here decide to go for a grainy, washed out look with some dirty close-ups. I believe this is the way filmmakers tried to make the fill look older compared to Ringu as it takes place 30 some odd years before those events. In any case I like the new look as it gave the franchise something different to look at. The film has our vengeful ghost Sadako pre-death, looking cute as a button and attending some theater college. She of course is very odd and quiet and the other students don't take too kindly to her. One day the lead actress of the play dies suddenly so the director picks Sadako to take her place. A nosy reporter does some investigating and discovers that Sadako has some special ESP powers and her, along with the theater crowd, decide to kill Sadako. Since you've already seen Ringu and Ringu 2 (and god forbid Rasen), then you already know how this film is going to end.

The whole film I got flashes of Carrie going through my head. You have the girl that doesn't fit in, a young boy that falls in love with her despite her awkwardness, and a vengeful psychotic parent. Substitute the prom for a play on opening night and you have the Japanese version of Carrie. Most of the film takes place in a darkly lit theater house so don't expect many interesting locations. The cast for the most part, especially Yukie Nakama as Sadako, are very good and keep that rather humdrum predicable story from becoming boring. Though there is one plot element that tends to bug me. It seems all these Ringu sequels have to have a least one plot element that becomes a thorn in my side. Towards the end of the film they talk about how Sadako has an alter ego that physically splits from her and they become two entities. I found that plot element ridiculous and the story would have benefited better without it. But then again it seems the writers of these films always have to throw in at least one ridiculous story element as if they were trying to drive me mad on purpose!

Fans of the franchise might be disappointed as this really isn't a ghost story and we only see Sadako in her vengeful state for a short period of time at the climax of the film. The plot again is derivative of Carrie and it is extremely predicable, mostly because we know what the outcome is going to be thanks to this being a prequel. Despite this the cast give the film their all filling it with good performances and director Norio Tsuruta does his best to keep the film moving trying to make-up for the derivative plot. Overall I didn't dislike the film and it kept my attention but this film will only be of interest to die hard fanatics of the franchise.

Bonus Rant: I do not understand the subtitle "Birthday." I don't recall anywhere in the film mentioning that it takes place on or around Sadako's birthday. Could the term "Brithday" refer to the birth of the curse? That doesn't really make sense either as characters are already talking about being cursed before Sadako is even murdered. Perhaps this is why Dreamworks Entertainment removed the subtitle from any of the DVD box artwork because most people, me included, wouldn't understand what it meant.
Super Reviewer
½ October 17, 2009
I really tried to like this movie, but I just couldn't get into it or care at all about the characters. The movie is so slow and it really makes me not want to watch it. It doesn't get really interesting until the last half hour and than I just don't care. The story of Sadako could have been very interesting.
June 3, 2007
Interesting and original story, if shaky and hard to follow. It's a little confusing how this is supposed to fit into the canon of the other movies, but maybe it's because I watched the first one so long ago. If you're going to watch these, try to watch them close together to maximize the continuity of the plot.
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