Rings – Going To The Well One Time Too Many – Review

Courtesy Paramount

Courtesy Paramount

That creepy, crawly girl with the split ends is climbing out of the well again, which is kind of a metaphor for how Hollywood does business these days.  They keep going to the well.

Matilda Anna Ingrid Lutz (she who has more names than movies in which she will star) plays Julia – a recent high school grad whose non-descript Bachelor contestant-looking boyfriend, Holt (Alex Roe), has gone away to college.  The two are trying to maintain a relationship, but all is disturbed one night when a crazy woman Skypes Julia using Holt’s computer and profile.

Of course, this sends Julia on a 500-mile, overnight journey to find Holt, who has gone missing.

It turns out, Holt and a bunch of his buddies are taking class from Gabriel (Johnny Galecki), who is trying to determine the existence of an afterlife when he finds a strange video where people who watch it die within 7 days.

Is Holt dead or alive?

Will Julia watch the video?

Rings is a toothless mystery and flaccid horror film that just ambles along with half-hearted attempts to shock and fruitless attempts to create some sort of mythology around the crazy girl who climbs out of the well.

After starting with an amusing, tongue-in-cheek opening scene, director F. Javier Gutierrez drops any fun to fill Rings with a plodding story featuring two vacant actors.  Lutz and Roe need to learn some skills before they lose the pretty looks that have given them a chance in the first place.  Neither one can drum up an emotion, and that’s quite pitiful given how they are in great peril most of the time and should at least be able to feign some fright (show them pictures of a young Galecki next to the pics of a current Galecki and that might make them scream as they realize the ravages of growing older).

Worst of all, they don’t have any material to work with.  Gutierrez has Rings moving at a snail’s pace with no action moving faster than a 90-year old with a broken hip, while the writing team needs a map to find the plot.  Instead of developing a coherent story with logic steps to a conclusion, these guys seem to be using a huge spinning wheel to select the next scene or twist.  This is scattershot to the highest degree.

Of course, what would a horror movie be without the tease/threat of a sequel?  Rings takes care of that, too.

0_5waffles_sml½ Waffle (Out of 4)

Rings is rated PG-13 for violence/terror, thematic elements, some sexuality and brief drug material