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Ring 0: Birthday Review

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Prequel explaining how young actress Sadako (Nakamara), haunted by visions, becomes the murdering spirit of The Ring after some strange deaths start occurring in the drama club she frequents.

★★★★

Director Norio Tsuruta masterfully takes up the reins, tracing the origins of the hugely successful Ring films.

Sadako is a hugely troubled teenager, haunted by tragedies and cursed with terrible powers and secrets. As things begin to unravel, multiple truths are revealed, leading towards a wretched inevitability.

This is a genuinely unsettling Japanese ghost story that employs a subtly creepy score, prowling camera work, simple yet powerful effects and fine performances. It also betters the original in every respect.

Bettering the original in every way, this is a suitably creepy and disquieting horror mystery.