The Ring Essay

Submitted By sletts
Words: 1283
Pages: 6

The Ring in all its manifestations; the Japanese novel, the Japanese film, and the American film, although deemed successful in its simplicity function to stage a film instilling horror within its viewers, it also offers much open speculation about the anxiety that is created by the development of communication technologies. All versions introduce startling insights into the relationship between changes in media forms and widespread fears of contagion. For it is this fascination and welcoming, or perhaps just the mere subconscious adapted utilization of new-age advancements in technology which give light in the novel to ultimately be the same thing that renders us ultimately doomed to an unescapable viral death. The Ring novel as well as both the Japanese and American film version reflect the collective anxiety of our time by representing the way in which inhuman technology and machines dominate our lives and beings. The Ring Narrative, most exemplifying of the three versions, incorporates these new-age media technologies into its supernatural narrative in order to illustrate the dehumanizing impact technology is posing on society in correlation to the essential downfall of humans, metaphorically and literally.
People may not encounter a killer with a mask and a machete, although, most people do use and own computers, cell phones, and televisions. The Ring narrative manages to take something that is so prevalent and so necessary in modern society and make it scary. What we rely on can turn against us, or in other context, media advancements that we are welcoming are actually the catalytic threats to our once wholesome society. “The Japanese horror films don’t see technology itself as a threat… Technology merely provides a conduit for more threatening forces to manifest themselves through” (Bunch 138). The story presents the fear that media and technology can take over our lives and eventually affect the real world. This is demonstrated by Sadako or Samara for that matter, physically entering and crossing over to this world. Television and telephones is the medium of choice in this story: a television is the only companion Samara had in her isolated room before she died, the television is where people are exposed to the cursed tape, and the telephone is the shadowy sanction to inform you of your impending death in seven days.
Through these examples, it is depicting that these means of technology are associated with and then therefore are creating nothing but dreadful operations and foreshadowing. It may be the unease at the fact that technology is changing the way society interacts and communicates thus which causes the Japanese or at least just the novel itself, to portray technology as an “evil” force. It will only continue to isolate us individually and ultimately seize the very components of the human being that which make us human, as opposed to any other living organism.
Majority of the novel is spent following Asakawa in investigating the video’s origins and Sadako’s history, seeking to discover whether the curse is biological or supernatural. His failure to find a solution indicates that this is not the novel’s point. Suzuki’s novel perhaps is concerned with a figurative social critique. The novel’s central conceit is not that of destroying the she-male monster or the mediums through which she captivates the victims by, but that of a moral dilemma. On that note, in watching the cursed video, one has to copy the tape and show it to someone else, condemning him or her in order to save oneself. The curse itself is not as terrifying as its antidote: the willingness to spread the curse regardless of the potential consequences. This antidote is a direct representation of the dehumanizing effect technology is posing on individuals; technology is acting as a catalyst, in accordance with the slow demise of Japanese pre-modernity valued dependence on tradition, cultural norms and beliefs. It isolates individuals…