Starring Gina Phillips, Tom Sizemore, Randall Batinkoff, and Jenny Mollen
Directed by Rubi Zack
Released by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
Picture this. You’re all alone in your house. The wind is just picking up outside, eventually blowing the windows and doors of your home open. Suddenly the lights begin to flicker. Things are getting progressively worse. Shadows dance upon the walls, taking the form of long buried shapes and secrets from your past. Frantically you begin to run. The wind is now a force in and of itself. It’s chasing you. Or is it the wind? Suddenly you begin to hear the sound of footsteps. Faint at first but steadily building, much like the wind did. Your heart begins to race. Sweat forms upon your brow as you seek shelter anywhere you can find it. The very walls that have sheltered you all this time are now alive, and you are public enemy number one. Your senses are on fire. The footsteps draw closer. Louder. The door begins to pound thunderously until it opens and you are blown backward out of your second story window into the waiting arms of Tom Sizemore. The waiting arms of Tom Sizemore? Yes, the waiting arms of Tom Sizemore!
I kid you not; that is an actual scene from Ring Around the Rosie. Sometimes I really wonder how someone could write a scene like that and think to themselves, “Yeah, this is gonna be bitchin’, man!” I mean honestly! Unfortunately that is just a sampling of the type of ludicrous things you will encounter while watching this flick, and things never really get any better.
After her grandmother dies, Karin (Phillips) finds herself left a wonderful old country home complete with barn and stables. Something is definitely amiss though as Karin wants this gift about as much as you or I would like to contract a scorching case of herpes. Does this place hold some dark memory or secret for her? Of course it does, or we wouldn’t have a movie, damnit! Long story, and I mean looooong story, short, Karin encounters a psycho ranch hand (Sizemore) that has been looking after her grandmother’s property. The two clash, spooky stuff like the blinking lights and the banging windows and doors are sprinkled in, and viola, low budget horror film!
Ring Around the Rosie is a film that makes you think it will be good in its opening moments. It has most of the elements of a good movie: great camera work, above par acting, up to snuff sound design, you name it! It’s all there! Except for the story of course. It’s a convoluted mess full of senseless twists and turns that go nowhere fast. The script is just abysmal. As a means to — I guess — flesh out the dialogue, actors can frequently be heard saying the same line in the same scene several times. You can’t help but laugh as the characters break into such thought-provoking diatribes like, “Why don’t you show me what you can do better than dance?! Why don’t you show me what you can do better than dance?! Why don’t you show me what you can do better than dance?!” I really felt for the actors too. Sizemore and Phillips try to do a lot with what little they’ve been given, but not even the most accomplished of actors could save this ship from sinking. The script is empty, shallow, and soulless.
Speaking of empty, shallow, and soulless, so is the DVD. There’s not even one special feature on it having to do with the film, and in this case I think that is a blessing. I don’t want to know a single thing more than what I already do. Thankfully, there was an extensive trailer gallery that reminded me of better times like The Exorcism of Emily Rose. Sigh.
In the words of the immortal J.C., “This too shall pass,” and thankfully it’s all over now. I guess in the end the filmmakers were just trying to get the moral of this torrid tale across: Some memories are best left buried. Some movies are too. *Breaks out the shovel*
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