Death Note  [DVD]
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Death Note is based on the hit supernatural action mystery manga written by Tsugumi Ohba and illustrated by Takeshi Obata.The live-action film, directed by Shusuke Kaneko - already established as a director of note through his series of popular monster movies featuring 'Gamera' - was released in late 2006 and went straight to the number 1 slot in Japan.
The film follows the Manga story of Light Yagami, who is a brilliant but bored student with great prospects. Life changes dramatically when he finds the Death Note, a notebook dropped by a rogue Shinigami (God of Death) named Ryuk. Any human whose name is written in the notebook dies. Light sees an opportunity to rid the world of evil using the powers granted in the Death Note.The police authorities call in the help of the famous, but unconventional detective L when criminals begin to mysteriously die. Both Light and L believe themselves to be serving justice, and so begins the battle of wits to see who really is good or evil.
"Gripping Japanese Manga Adaptation With Exceptionally High Body Count." **** Critics Choice --Time Out
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Top Customer Reviews
The cat and mouse story kept you gripped and you had no idea what was coming next. Lines were drawn and boundaries blurred, and you were never sure who you should be routing for as the good guy was an oddball and the baddy was as a good person who did bad things for the right reasons.
The acting too was excellent throughout, with L's character being played particularly well in a twisted, freaky, kooky way which I thought really worked.
The CGI demon - or Death God - looks a bit dodge by today's CGI standards, but as far as the creature design goes, he's pretty cool, and another great example of a character in the film who leaves you unsure what side of the fences he's on... good or bad.
The twists are many and you don't see them coming and overall there was nothing I didn't like about this film. If I had to pick wholes I'd say that the subtitles could have been translated a bit better in one or two places and there was a scene towards the end (with a girl, Misa Misa, and a Death Note) that left me puzzled, however, all is quickly revealed in Death Note 2. A quick look at my waiting Death Note 2 dvd box, and things started to make sense.
Death Note 2 [DVD] 
Also the DVD was very light on extras. There were non basically with just the trailers and a weblink if you put the DVD in a PC. Boring and a real shame, as there was so much they could have done with documentaries on the CGI Death Gods or its original Manga roots.
Still, even with the lack of extras I can't force myself to give this film anything other than 5 stars. Verdict: Make a note of it. Everything about it worked. A great film that was super cool. One to 'note'. That's enough puns for one review.
This is very misleading. DEATH NOTE does contain lots of people dying....but it is in no way a blood bath. In fact there's hardly any blood at all.
What we have here, is a very stylish and cleverly unique film where there is a hero and an anti-hero...both of whom you'll side with, both believe they are serving justice. For me, the God of Death, and the Death Note were added bonuses, along with a bunch of great side characters which add to the charm of this fantasy thriller. This is not a horror film. supernatural? Yes. Intelligent and worth seeing over and over? Yes. But PLEASE watch this in Japanese with English subs, and not the terrible American dub.
Tatsuya Fujiwara and Kenich Matsuyama are really outstanding....and i'd have to say i'm not a cgi fan but how about the shinigami Ryuk?, he certainly deserved all the apples he could eat.
One more thing. The suspense, feel and intrigue surrounding almost everything in very mundane locations is genius. The mind games are brilliant too. Usually i love films with great scenery and cinematography, but in DEATH NOTE what's lacking in landscapes is made up for by the unreal appearances of the God of Death....and his apples.
About the DVD: Screen Format says Anamorphic 16.9, it's 1.85. Genre Supernatural Thriller. Audio channel 5.1/2.0. Sound Dolby. Language/ Japanese English Subtitles. All Regions/ o/ PAL. Picture is sharp, crisp but not Blu-ray.
As i'm not a die hard fan of the whole Death Note franchise, I was able to appreciate the changes from the manga to the film etc.
I thought the actors including Lite and L did an amazing job at portraying two unusual and original characters.
The cheap effects of Ryuk really did not bother me, though I'm still trying to understand what it is exactly he does to contribute to the story.
I only watched about a quarter of the anime series but I know this film was still promising to the original storyline without turning it into something completely different as most adaptations do- though keeping it fresh with different endings as my friends pointed out so you're not watching the same thing over again.
However, the only thing that concerned me was that the beginning sequence were in a weird order and I do not think one would enjoy it without knowledge of the plot or watching the anime first. I guess it was done that way to save time as the film is a little longer than 2 hours so they had to squeeze everything in.
For those that don't know Death Note is about a student called Light Yagami who finds a mysterious book named the "death note", the book was dropped by a god of death called ryuk. Any human whose name is written in the death note will die, the cause of death and date can be specified by the author but if not the victim will just die of a heart attack. Light uses the death note to punish those that he feels deserves death, when large numbers of criminals start to mysteriously die a detective known as L is called in to lead an investigation on the cause.
The story is incredibly interesting as both Light and L believe they are helping to create a better future but in vastly different ways. There are many plot twists that keep you on the edge of your seat and all the way through you are trying to piece every little detail in your head which helps to make it a more engaging film.
All the performances from the actors are great, Ryuk looks as good as you would expect for realistic looking CG character but Light, played by Tatsuya Fujiwara and L, played by Kenichi Matsuyama steal the show. The characters seem similar to what the were in the anime and I wouldn't have it any other way.
Fans of the anime should not have any problems in enjoying this. This DVD could also be a great way to getting friends to watch the anime, you can get people to watch this by saying "it's an extremely dark story with a cool plot" and you don't have to worry about them saying no because it's a cartoon.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Hard to believe this is 10 years old now. Years ago when this was all "new" I really did enjoy it, a gripping story with a really nice backdrop. Read morePublished 12 days ago by PagongWok!
Great film. Not too sure how closely it follows the anime but was a good watch.Published 2 months ago by Miss K Cottrill
Arrived alot sooner than it said , I am happy with this as I am a huge death note fanPublished 3 months ago by Amazon Customer
Amazing....such s good did just like the anime version. Deffo a must for every Death Note fan.Published 7 months ago by Emily
This is a great book for anyone who is interested in Manga. Bought it for my teenagers and they loved it.Published 7 months ago by Linda
Grate works find came fast but it is subtitled only not dubPublished 10 months ago by christina harmer