*scenes or ideas from the first film--interesting and effective the first time--redone with slight variations
*soap opera plot twists involving a newly discovered family member sharing a cursed past
*a painfully stupid "rah-rah!" moment when the heroine pauses to say "fuck you!" to her nemesis before defeating her
*A series of done-to-death cinematic cliches, including:
A)an eerie music box in the basement which starts playing when touched
B)a mother, aware that her child is in supernatural danger, who inexplicably and continually decides to leave him somewhere to fetch something from the car, or from another house, or from another room
C)a mother--hearing dreadful noises upstairs where her supernaturally beset son has been left alone--who goes to investigate said noises but instead asks him questions from the bottom of the steps, including my personal favorite: "Is that you, Aidan?" I'm surprised we didn't get the king of horror cliche: "Stop kidding around, guys, this isn't funny"--oh, never mind, we did!
D)thinly disguised elements from good horror films which have little to do with the plot: The Omen, The Shining, The Exorcist, the first Ring, etc.
Of course afficionados of horror will accept a certain number of these elements, much as readers of romance and mystery will accept certain obviously contrived scenes over and over; part of the pleasure of genre fandom lies in their comforting recurrence. I actually enjoyed Ring 2 despite its obviousness--it had enough flair, enough directorial style, to keep me engaged even whilst grumbling at the occasional over-obvious moment. The Senator was largely empty during our Tuesday evening showing--but ten people are enough of a crowd to have two different cellphones go off at two different times, and to contain idiots who have to ask questions about what's happening. To the young lady seated in front of me and her moronic boyfriend: (*mini spoiler alert*) Yes, a syringe filled with nothing but air and injected into the juggler is deadly, so shut the fuck up! We had to endure a five minute discussion along the lines of: "Oh my God, there's no poison in that needle--like she'd die from nothing!"