Genre: Fantasy Thriller
Director: Shusuke Kaneko
Starring: Tatsuya Fujiwara, Kenichi Matsuyama,
Erika Toda, Nana Katase
RunTime: 2 hrs 20 mins
Released By: GV & Encore Films
Official Website: http://wwws.warnerbros.co.jp/deathnote/
Opening Day: 28 December 2006
The sequel to Death Note
Everybody loves a good sequel – especially when the
original movie boasts of an ending which left its viewers
has been two months since we saw the movie adaptation of this
Japan’s bestselling manga series. After earning big
bucks in other Asian countries like Japan, Hong Kong, Taiwan,
the second and concluding chapter of this Japanese blockbuster
graces our shores.
like its predecessor, this live-action feature film contains
a few pleasant surprises.
up where the first movie left off, we are once again introduced
to a world where finishing off your enemies has never been
easier. For fans of the manga and movie, you’d know
about how this seemingly ordinary notebook has the power to
kill those whose names are written in it. A battle of wits
between two young men ensues in this movie, where the truth
of the killer must ultimately be revealed.
in a few supporting characters with sneaky ulterior motives,
an emotional Death God, and some other red herrings –
and you’d have a plot which messes the audience’s
minds with guessing games.
that this feature has to summarize the fourth to twelfth chapters
of the manga series, it is a commendable job done by writers
Tsugumi Oba and Tetsuya Oishi. However, we also predict that
some purists of the original comics won’t be too pleased
about the changes made to this movie version.
the first movie impressed with its adequate pacing and interesting
characterization, the 140-minute runtime of this sequel had
us tapping our feet impatiently during certain slower moments.
we understand the need to develop the individual characters
and justify their motives – but their every action and
reason for committing those terrible crimes are so predictable,
they actually drag down the pace of the otherwise charming
sequences of the movie may appear preachy to the more impatient
viewers, exploring notions of moral justice and righteousness,
sacrificing for the greater good, and the idea of giving everything
else up for a certain feeling called love. These messages
are relayed adequately, and provide food for thought during
some of the more unnecessary conversational scenes.
Fujiwara plays the twisted Light with just the right amount
of that sinister look in his eyes. You don’t know whether
or not to support his somewhat selfish cause. Erika Toda is
cute and bubbly as the lovesick Misa; and may either turn
you on or irritate you to bits, depending on your gender.
The two animated Death Gods Ryuuk and Rem are injected with
some humaneness which made us empathize with those misunderstood
of course, stealing the show with ease is Kenichi Matsuyama’s
L, whose every little move gets our utmost attention. Be it
his shifty eyes, his thumb-sucking gesture, or his fabulous
food variation of lollipops, puddings and pastry snacks, we
find ourselves attracted to his eccentric character. That
is why we cannot wait to see him back on the big screen in
2008 in a spin-off movie chronicling his pre-Death Note days.
name is definitely not one we want in the notebook of death.
movie sequel may be lengthy, but it is still a satisfying
conclusion to the interesting live-action manga adaptation)
by John Li