|This article does not cite any references or sources. (February 2010)|
|Directed by||Jonathan Liebesman|
|Produced by||Arnon Manor
|Written by||Ehren Kruger
|Distributed by||DreamWorks SKG|
Rings is a 2005 American horror short film. It was initially released as an extra disc with a re-release of The Ring on DVD. The events in Rings lead up to the sequel The Ring Two, on whose DVD Rings is also included as a bonus feature.
Some time after the events of The Ring, Samara Morgan's videotape has spread, as each person who sees the video makes a copy and shows it to someone else. A subculture has grown surrounding the video: people wait to see how close to the seven-day deadline they can get. When they grow too afraid to go on any longer, they show the tape to the next assigned person. During the interval, some create videos documenting their experiences to be posted to websites devoted to the videotape phenomenon. Groups that have watched the video are called "rings".
The movie is focused on Jake, the latest member of one such ring. The ring has also recruited its next member, Timmy, who will watch the tape when Jake cracks. Eddie, a member, says that no one has ever been able to make it to day seven before cracking, and everyone who did has died. He tells Jake to make sure to record everything he sees. Jake is amazed at what he experiences at first, and Vanessa, another member, says she wants Jake to make it to day seven.
However, Jake's experiences soon turn scary, as he starts seeing visions of Samara suddenly popping up wherever he goes, and has a similar dream that Rachel had from the first movie of Samara grabbing his arm, leaving a bruise there. After several more unsettling experiences, he cracks on the sixth day, but Timmy refuses to watch the tape. It is revealed that Vanessa is the one who made Timmy refuse to watch the tape, as she wants to see what happens on day seven. However, this leaves Jake without someone to pass the curse onto.
By the next day, he's become so desperate he tries to play the video on the display models at an electronics store, but is caught and thrown out by a security guard who is a member of rings, and knows what the tape does. Jake begins dialing random numbers, hoping to find somebody to show the tape. Finally, he thinks of Emily, a girl he goes to school with. He invites her over without mentioning the video. Before she arrives, he experiences a vision in which Samara arrives and he tries to break the TV. Samara comes out anyway since the TV wasn't completely destroyed. She reaches through the screen on his video camera and the vision ends.
An hour before the deadline, Emily agrees to come, leading to the opening sequence of The Ring Two; Vanessa is seen encouraging Emily by nodding vigorously when she is making her decision to go to Jake's, so she may have known about the rings beforehand.
- As viral marketing, DreamWorks created the website She Is Here, tying into the short film, which also allowed others to roleplay in the Ring universe as members of video "rings".
- If you turn the volume up during the scene where Jake is watching the video of the person who left his camera on when Samara killed him, you can hear the lines: "Who's out there? Little girl, are you lost?" Samara simply says "Rachel", and the man with the camera questions "Rachel? Is that your mommy? Are you lost?" at which point Samara kills him. Near the end of The Ring Two, Samara grabs on to Rachel's leg saying "Mommy!"
The short film garnered positive reviews from both critics and audiences who purchased the special edition of the first film; released shortly before The Ring Two. Felix Vasquex Jr. of Cinema Craze said, "A very sleek and morbid short film, and one infinitely more enjoyable and tense than the sequel could be..."
It is possible that the short film could serve as the main inspiration for the upcoming Rings; as the background of the film has been revealed to aim towards a "teen-centric" realm.
- the Cursed Video Network - Contains the cursed videos of the Ring cycle and their scene-by-scene analyses, as well as lots of other useful information.
- She Is Here - The DreamWorks viral marketing site, now run by fans of the franchise.
- Rings at the Internet Movie Database