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November 18, 2017, 06:10:28 PM
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Author Topic: Netflix Death Note 2017  (Read 149 times)

Offline DankKanti

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Netflix Death Note 2017
« on: September 05, 2017, 05:36:13 PM »
Anyone see the new Death Note movie?  No?  Good, you didn't miss much.   :P

Honestly, I don't think many people expected much from this movie, but it still managed to disappoint.  I won't get into the white-washing or the changes they made to the story or the characters, because that was all expected as far as an american adaptation went.  What really bothered me was the garbage writing in this movie.  L gets the Death Note, and literally the first thing he does with it is he shows it off to the hot girl in school so he can get laid.  And because his girlfriend is a sociopath with no real explanation as to why given they team up and decide they're going to kill off all the bad guys in the world for...  reasons.  Yeah, they never really go into the hows and whys of any of the character's motivations for wanting to make the world a better place.  Light's mom died in a car crash and the guy who killed her got away so he wants to kill people, and that's basically it.  That's all they've got motivating this flimsy character, who in no way resembles his anime/manga counterpart.  Which brings me to my next gripe about this movie: the characters.  Light and Mia are the WORST!  Not only are their motivations flimsy (and in Mia's case non-existent), but they're both written and acted so poorly.  They are two of the most unlikable main characters I might have ever come across in a movie with zero charisma and zero chemistry together.  Which is a shame because a large portion of this movie is based around the love story (hold for vomit) between these two vapid and unlikable people who you're really just hoping end up dead by the end of the movie. 

It wasn't all terrible though.  I was actually pleasantly surprised by Keith Stanfield's portrayal of L.  He plays it slightly different than in the anime/manga but with just enough of the real L's mannerisms and quirks to show that he actually gave a shit.  Maybe it was just because he was playing across from two absolutely terrible characters, but he really gave you someone to root for in this movie.  Willem Dafoe was also decent as Ryuuk and the CGI/Practical effects mash up they did with him ended up looking fantastic I thought, but he was really underutilized as a character throughout the whole movie.  He was really only there to explain the rules of the Death Note to Light and that was it.  He didn't really do much else the rest of the film.  Light's dad also didn't really add much to the movie and is kind of just the typical movie cop dad  Though I did think the actor playing him was a good fit for the role and played it well. 

What really killed this movie though was the director's complete lack of awareness about what this story is supposed to be about.  I know earlier I said 'it's an adaptation and some changes are to be expected,' but the entire story of death note is really a psychological thriller, a battle of wits taking place in the ultimate game of cat and mouse with an underlying theme about the nature of morality.  What is right and wrong?  Is it okay to play judge, jury and executioner to a host of heinous criminals in an attempt to make the world a better place?  Instead the director gives us another installment in the Final Destination franchise with the name Death Note plastered on the cover.  Not one person dies of a simple heart attack in this movie!  Heck there are like 90 new rules added to the death note, and the heart attack rule isn't even mentioned.  Instead everyone dies in these way too cheesey over the top accidents that somehow get attributed to Kira.  Now yes, Light does make some people write Kira's name in their own blood before they die, but how the hell do the police distinguish the difference between an actual accident and every other death that happens in the movie?  It makes NO sense.  The police attribute 400 or so deaths to Kira in this one little montage, but they only show one or two people actually writing his name down.  Most of the others are hit by a bus or jump off a building, anything that would make a human body go 'SPLAT.'  But honestly, that's just one of a hundred or so plot holes in this poorly written garbage excuse for a movie.  It would take me all day to list them all, and honestly it's just not worth my time.  Neither was this move though. 

1/10  >:(

Offline SQA

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Re: Netflix Death Note 2017
« Reply #1 on: September 06, 2017, 05:56:25 PM »
Adaptation can work okay, even into another culture (as Death Note doesn't require itself to be Japanese to work as a story), but when the new creators don't "get" the story, it always goes wrong. (Which actually brings up a point that I think Media intentionally plays up the "it's not as good as the original" to hide how badly most productions miss the core understanding of the original work.)

Offline DankKanti

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Re: Netflix Death Note 2017
« Reply #2 on: September 07, 2017, 12:23:23 AM »
Adaptation can work okay, even into another culture (as Death Note doesn't require itself to be Japanese to work as a story), but when the new creators don't "get" the story, it always goes wrong. (Which actually brings up a point that I think Media intentionally plays up the "it's not as good as the original" to hide how badly most productions miss the core understanding of the original work.)

Yeah, that was my big problem with the movie.  Like I said, I knew and expected there to be significant changes to the story and characters, and I didn't mind that at all.  I was even kind of excited to see what someone else would do with the concept honestly.  But they just missed the mark SO bad.  Instead of an intense psychological thriller, we got a lame love story set in some cheesy b-grade horror movie.  It was awful. 

I'll admit though, I really enjoyed L's performance and thought he was easily the highlight of an otherwise terrible movie.  I got to give that guy serious props for his portrayal.  I almost hope they make some sort of spin off movie or series with L as the main character, just solving regular mysteries and catching regular killers.  I'd watch the crap out of that. 
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