This movie is based upon the manga Death Note with story by Tsugumi Ohba and art by Takeshi Obata, who also did Hikaru no Go. The premise of the story line is that there are shinigami, or death gods who carry Death Notes in which they write the names of the people who are supposed to die. One day, for amusement, the shinigami Ryuuk decides to drop his Death Note to Earth and see what becomes of it and the finder, Raito or Light Yagami. Light chooses the high-handed path of playing god and starts wiping out criminals quickly gaining fame as the anonomous Kira or "killer." In turn, the famous but hidden investigator 'L' is put on his tail, and thus the brilliant chase ensues. The manga has enjoyed such high international popularity that it has been published in at least English and has spawned a movie series and, yes, an anime... The movies are also insanely popular playing not only upon the popularity of the manga but upon having two of Japan's hottest hearthrobs as the leads.
There are two movies scheduled to be released; one a few weeks ago and the sequal in October. There are plans to show this movie in America and talk of a remake if the popularity is judged to be high enough, though I dearly hope they don't. The first movie reputedly kinda sorta sticks to the storyline, though one big difference is that Light has a girlfriend, Shiori. A full spoiler of the plot and its differences can be found here. Light is played by Tatsuya Fujiwara who is recognizable as Shuya Nanahara from Battle Royale. Going only on clips I have seen, I'm finding him a bit lacking for this specific part though people who have seen the movie says he does a wonderful job. Either way, Kenichi Matsuyama, the actor cast for L, makes up for many shortcomings; his characterizations are awesome. The animation of the shinigami is wonderful - I was worried about Ryuuk, but not anymore! The first movie ends with L and Light meeting face to face for the first time and the second movie takes it from there.
If anybody wants the manga, I'll upload it. I just didn't want to do so and then have nobody care :p
Previews and other fun goodies can be found at the official website. death_note and dn_apples are other excellent sources, if you're interested.
Death Note (manga) Tribute
First 10 min of movie
Death Note movie single
Artist: Suga Shikao
Single: Manatsu no Yoru no Yume
Light and Ryuuk clip
Death Note OST
In Japan nice pamphlets with glossy pictures, interviews, 'behind the scenes,' and actor bios are sold at movies. Some kind soul scanned this in, so take a look!
♥ 12inch_national ♥
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