The TV scene in Ringu is one of the scariest things I have ever seen, right up there with the subliminal face in The Exorcist.
What subliminal face?
With regards to all the “unanswered questions” this movie has left people with, allow me to throw out some speculation.
First of all, my understanding of the backstory’s chronology is this (and keep in mind, this is going from memory):
Little girl is born, when her mother hasn’t been able to have any children with the actual father. Rumors fly that she may have had the child via an affair. (An incubus, perhaps?)
Little girl grows older. Mother begins getting headaches.
Little girl learns to ride a horse. At some point, she falls off a horse. She is now angry at horses. Horses begin to die mysteriously. Mother’s headaches get worse. Mother begins having some severe mental defects spring up. Blames them on the girl.
Forces girl to sleep in a barn. With horses. Girl because psychotically vengeful, and starts exerting her supernatural powers on the island, causing all sorts of devastating (but unspecified) effects.
Girl is sent to be psychoanalyzed, where she proceeds to burn the images onto the X-ray film we see in the film.
The mental hospital, unable to deal with this psycho, gives her back to her mother, who loathes her, and tells her it’s her problem.
Mother takes her out to a farm on the mainland and proceeds to suffocate and drown the girl in the well.
Cabin is built over well, with a VCR player, and the girl’s spirit turns a tape into THE tape.
All manners of horny high school kids over the years visit the cabin, some seeing the tape accidentally, and then dying, and eventually, a Urban Legend (this one being true) about a tape that kills in 7 days is created.
Enter main characters, cue the rest of the movie.
I’m not quite clear on what everyone else seems to be unclear on, and I only saw the movie twice.
Utterly brilliant, as far as I’m concerned, though I haven’t seen Ringu, so I don’t know how much of that brilliance was plagarized. Nonetheless, the camerawork, atmosphere, acting, and dialogue were all top-shelf.