After terrifying audiences worldwide with the blockbuster J-horror classic Ring and its sequel, director Hideo Nakata returned to the genre for Dark Water, another highly atmospheric, and critically acclaimed, tale of the supernatural which took the common theme of the “dead wet girl” to new heights of suspense and drama. Based upon a short story by Ring author Koji Suzuki, Dark Water follows Yoshimi, a single mother struggling to win sole custody of her only child, Ikuko. When they move into a new home within a dilapidated and long-forgotten apartment complex, Yoshimi begins to experience startling visions and inexplicable sounds, calling her mental well-being into question and endangering not only her custody of Ikuko but perhaps their lives as well. Beautifully shot by the same cinematographer as Ring and Pulse, and featuring an especially unnerving sound design, Dark Water successfully merges spine-tingling tension with a family’s heart-wrenching emotional struggle, creating one of the very finest and most unsettling contemporary Japanese horror films.
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