BDN Archive – Death Note – Movie Review

This was originally posted by me at (no longer available) on July 4, 2013.

"Light and L" by RyuFujin4 (used with permission)
“Light and L” by RyuFujin4 (used with permission)

Purchase on Amazon (affiliate link)

Genre & Length: Thriller, 120 minutes

The Blurb:

Ace student Light Yagami finds the Death Note, a notebook intentionally dropped by a rogue “Shinigami” death god named Ryuk. Any human whose name is written in the notebook dies. Upset with the current justice system, Light takes matters into his own hands and vows to use the power of the Death Note to rid the world of all evil, and become “the God of the new world”.

A mysterious detective known only as “L” quickly learns that the serial killer, nicknamed “Kira” by the public, is located in Japan. Light realizes that L will be his greatest enemy, and a game of psychological cat and mouse between the two begins.

My Thoughts

Plot & Pacing: I’ve watched the anime series of Death Note, and read probably half of the manga, and knew that if they were going to fit this into two movies, a LOT of action was going to be chopped.

That said, a lot of action WAS chopped. But it was chopped very well. In fact, to go along with my gardening phase, I’d use the word “pruned” rather than “chopped”.

A movie script is vastly different from a manga outline, and they adapted it well. Everything flowed so smoothly that at times I looked at it and went “why didn’t they tell it like this in the manga? It makes much more sense now!”

Casting: Well… it was Japanese acting with English voice dubbed over. Once you get past the fact that the lips don’t match the words, though, the acting of the main characters was excellent. Some of the extras were… well… lacking in talent.

Special Effects: It’s … a low-budget film. From 2006. That said, it’s definitely not the worst CGI I’ve seen (there’s no way they could have gotten live actors for the Shinigami :P). Not the best, but by far not the worst.

Would I watch it again: Yes!

What do you think?

About Rebekah

Rebekah Loper writes character-driven epic fantasy featuring resilient women in trying and impossible circumstances who just want to save themselves but usually end up saving the world, often while falling in love.
She lives in Tulsa, OK with her husband, dog, two formerly feral cats, a small flock of feathered dragons (...chickens. They're chickens), and an extensive tea collection. When she's not writing, she battles the Oklahoma elements in an effort to create a productive, permaculture urban homestead.