It might contain spoilers!
It’s western after all, so I’ll be gentle!
Death Note is one of the most famous anime/manga from the Japanese franchises. My very first review on this blog was about it and if you wanna check it you can find it at the bottom of the TV Show/ Anime/ Film list. With iconic characters and mind-blowing games, it succeeded in stealing the attention of people all around the world. So of course, when we are talking about such a huge community of fans, you need to lift up to certain expectations. But, as imagined, the Netflix adaption dissapointed many of us.
I watched the movie last night, yes on the 30th of August, and I told myself that I’m gonna give it a chance despite of all the hateful comments and reviews I’ve seen. Maybe I will like it after all. Unfortunately, I have to say I agree with what the people who watched it as well think. First of all, it’s extremely western and even though it is an american production, it should have at least some sort of a Japanese vibe. A rather average Light is portraited than the genius we are used to. More, I cannot get over his name. Turner, really? Is it anything wrong with Yagami? And since we are on the topic, I assume that that girl Mia, who has the privilege of finding out about the Death Note quite fast (something that the original Light would never reveal, try to remember how well hidden he kept Ryuk’s precious killing tool) is supposed to be Misa. Where’s the “s”, then? And why isn’t she entirely devoted to Light? I mean, she claims to love him in the movie too, but she considers the idea of betraying him. Plus, it’s more of a phsycal attraction, not admiration. They both barely remind us of the original characters if not at all. Turner even doubts at a certain point the benefits of using the Death Note and Mia is the one who’s not willing to give up, killing some innocent cops.
Focusing on better things, they nailed Ryuk and L. The two and the ones from the anime/manga are not completely alike, but it’s understandable why since it’s an adaption. L gets a way too sensitive sometimes or enlists gestures that wouldn’t make us think of the best detective of the world, but there are certain similarities between him and the Ryuzaki we know and love. In my opinion, they should have done the same with all the other characters. Maybe Watari was fine too. By the way, Light would never regret murdering him. Anyway, let’s presume that Netflix tried to bring a new perspective, tried to change the personalities of these characters, but the entire movie lacks intensity. The action doesn’t include any battle strategies and it’s happening too fast. I am aware they didn’t dispose of that much time, but they could’ve at least make the movie longer. Or not at all because we already have live actions for Death Note and even a drama, which was pretty good.
The end it’s what saves somehow the Netflix’s attempt because finally Light Turner does something Light Yagami would do which was apparently planned long before it happened. What was indeed interesting is that when Mia says she loves him, he just looks at her which might lead us to the thought that he was probably just using her. The original Death Note, however, and the Netflix adaption are on total different levels. While the anime and the manga, for sure, provide an epic conflict between two masterminds, the western production shows us a little game for children that is supposed to have serious consequences.