L: Change the World (2008) Poster

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8/10
If you are a fan of L's eccentricities, you'll love it. Otherwise....
Tivor X-091378 July 2008
First off, a note to the Death Note fans who have only enjoyed the anime/manga series: This movie is a sequel to the two live-action Death Note movies. The two movies follow an alternate ending to the Death Note anime/manga storyline, and this movie follows up to that. Therefore, if you don't know the movie ending, then you'll be left scratching your head where this movie fits in the timeline.

Another note to the people who are expecting another epic battle of wits between L and a new Kira and/or a new Shinigami (Death God): This movie does not have it. At all.

Light, Misa, and Ryuk only make a brief appearance, pretty much to recap and wrap up a small loose end from the previous movies, and that's it. This movie is about a whole new case, unrelated to Death Notes and Shinigamis. There is a reason why the words "Death Note" are not in the title of this movie. This is likely going to be a major sticking point to most fans of the Death Note franchise.

Not helping is the fact that the new case and the storyline (and the way it's told) isn't really much to write home about. The villain is supposed to be a super-genius of L's ilk, but we never get the kind of duel of the minds we've come to expect from Death Note. And for all the threat that the villain poses, the movie simply doesn't feel that suspenseful. In fact, one "horrific" death scene just ends up being unintentionally comical. As a crime thriller goes, this is a mundanely written and directed work. If such aspects are what you will be watching this movie for, you are going to be seriously disappointed.

So what should you be watching this movie for? L being L (and the actor Ken'ichi Matsuyama's top-notch portrayal of him), and L making human connections with children.

Does that description make you roll your eyes? If so, then this movie is definitely not for you.

But if you are the kind of person who enjoys L's eccentricities -- and maybe even finds him flat-out adorable for those qualities -- then you are absolutely going to love this movie. The director Hideo Nakata has said that he wanted to show L's previously unseen "human side" with this film, and in this respect, he delivers in spades.

I watched this movie at Los Angeles Anime Expo 2008 in an auditorium with 1000+ people, and I got a huge kick out of this movie. Fans were giddily screaming when L did one of his signature eccentric moves, oooh-ing and awww-ing when L showed his tender side, and hollering "YEAH!!!" when L made a triumphant heroic entrance. Grand joyous time was had by all.

To me, this movie was the perfect homage to L and his fans. And as such, I'm giving this movie an unabashedly inflated score of 8/10. If I were to rate it as a straightforward crime thriller movie, I might go as low as 4/10.

This movie is strictly for the fans of L's eccentricities only. Everybody else can safely skip this movie.
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2/10
L couldn't change this movie
ethSin29 June 2008
Warning: Spoilers
I haven't read the manga series, but I really enjoyed the two Death Note movies. L for me, was an interesting character, however, I was very skeptic to how this movie could possibly work, since a super-weird character like him usually only work in smaller roles, and the mysteriousness was the underlying charm of L in those two movies. I had an extremely low expectation in this film, and to my surprise, it was even worse than what I had imagined.

First of all... the story is absolutely worthless. It's something you would expect from a Hollywood B-movie or a low budget made-for-TV movie. The original series had been an exciting cat-and-mouse game of wits and deception. Even if they didn't want to re-use the Death Note, battle of wits is vital to the success of a movie like this, and for a character like L to reach full potential. This on the other hand, was L in a MIB ripoff organization in a cheesy biohazard plot with really dumb villains. As if that alone wasn't enough, they also added typical Japanese corniness: psychotic killers with environmental nonsense ideology and how the entire human race should be purged.

Horrible overacting by the supporting cast and poor direction didn't help. This was not a movie meant to be directed by a horror movie director. That "death in the lab" scene was totally corny, and the director kept trying to make Maki, the little girl, seem like a child psycho killer you would see in horror movies, and it was totally unconvincing and stupid. Fukuda Mayuko, who played Maki is an extremely talented up-and-coming actress, and I am very upset this director put her through a crap role like this.

I loved the final scene where L attempts to stand up straight since he found a new hope in life and wanted to live longer, and I can tell Matsuyama Kenichi tried really hard in this movie. He did great job. But "no matter how gifted, one cannot change the world alone", he couldn't save this movie alone.
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2/10
A step down
curl-612 July 2008
Living up to the excellence of Shusuke Kaneko's Death Note films was always going to be a daunting task. The makers of this film responded to this challenge by avoiding it.

The film's prominent ties to its predecessors, most notably the inclusion of several characters and events from them, are entirely superficial, and I was left with the distinct impression that Nakata's primary desire was to make a bioterrorism thriller, with the Death Note movies and the character of L serving merely as convenient springboards.

After going to the trouble of hiring several actors to reprise their roles, (Such as Erika Toda as Misa, Asaka Seto as Naomi Misora, and Shunji Fujimura) their characters are criminally underused. This is not just lazy, it is cruel. It's the equivalent of dangling food in front of a starving dog only to pull it away after only letting them lick it. Even the unperceptive viewer can tell these are blatant attempts to fake a connection which is essentially nonexistent.

The sheer magnitude of neglected opportunities to capitalise on the wealth of plot and character established by the Death Note films is staggering. A event as stupendous as Kira's reign of death would have a lasting effect on society; the Death Note films show the beginnings of this, with people divided over whether his actions were right, and many supporting him to a religious degree. Yet in L: Change the WorLd, its almost as if none of it had ever happened. Life goes on as usual, with scarcely a mention of the monumental upheaval the world has just undergone. This also could've provided many interesting possibilities, such as the Kira cult becoming involved in the plot, or characters such as Misa and Ryuk playing new roles and continuing to develop. Apparently, Nakata couldn't care less.

What's more, he can't resist falling back on his roots as a horror director, and is determined to scare the audience with the victims of the virus. Unfortunately, the result is corniness rather than adrenaline. The rest if the time, he's either plodding through the drama on autopilot, or inserting light comedy in a haphazard manner.

The writing isn't much better. The script is brimming with trite clichés, yet is oblivious to this and makes no effort to put a fresh spin on them. It has some admirable aspirations, namely its attempts to explore L's human side, and capture the topical issues of terrorism and the Bird Flu/SARS scares in the same way that its prequels addressed justice and the death penalty, but in execution it fails. Overall, it largely plays like amateur fanfiction, overusing the surface strengths of the originals (namely L's eccentricity) while losing its deeper strengths. Interesting ideas are left to rot on a compost heap of generic characters, messy plotting, and lame attempts to emulate the excesses of the typical Hollywood action movie.

To his immense credit, Kenichi Matsuyama lifts L above this malaise and squeezes a river of blood from the stony script in his typically witty and charismatic performance. Once again, he embodies the character down to his finest mannerisms, and makes like he just crept off the set of The Last Name. True, his English skills are modest, but this is actually believable; I met many Japanese people who spoke in this way during my time in Japan.

Sadly, however, much the use of English throughout the film is reminiscent of the Heisei Godzilla series in its grating inanity. Also, the Japanese performances outside of Matsuyama range from decent, (Fukuda Mayuko as Maki) to downright cheesy. (Most of the villains) Even Erika Toda as Misa had none of the spark Kaneko drew out of her in the prequels during her brief cameo.

Even Death Note veteran Kenji Kawai's score, while certainly not bad, is a far cry from his work on the previous films, though largely because he's mostly forcibly limited to low key background music and the long periods of sluggish silence Nakata so adores. He finally finds a chance to shine towards the end, where he provides two impressive pieces; an epic cue that accompanies L's arrival at the climax, and a melancholy piece that fits the fittingly touching conclusion nicely.

Cinematography is also a step down, losing the smooth, rich clarity of the Death Note movies for a dry and altogether bland visual style.

Thankfully it's not all doom and gloom; there's some good apples among the piles of rotten ones. As mentioned previously, the ending is suitably poignant, though the tears it almost brought to my eyes are due primarily to my love of and familiarity with the character. I also laughed aloud at several of L's displays of quirkiness, and flushed with joy at the rare but delicious moments of Death-Note-style "intellectual pwnage." The opening title sequence is slick and classy, capturing the feel of its predecessors wonderfully.

The FX are strong for a Japanese film, and are actually slightly more advanced than those of the first two films. The destruction of the infected village is vivid and impressive, and the practical effects for virus's symptoms are mostly well done. Ryuk's execution via CGI during his brief appearance is about on par with his previous incarnations.

But you know something's wrong when your counting the good moments rather than the bad ones.

In the end, the film's highlights are like sweet chocolate chips in a bitter and mouldy cookie. It succeeds as fanservice and as cold commercial calculation, but fails as art, entertainment, or storytelling. It's an awful shame, because with the ingredients left by its marvellous predecessors, it could have been truly great.
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4/10
poorly conceived and badly written, but L is still cool
simon_booth15 February 2008
I'm sure everyone agrees that L was by far the more interesting character in the Death Note movies, thanks to a charmingly weird geek-cool performance from Kenichi Matsuyama, possibly channelling Johnny Depp. As such you can't blame the producers for giving him his own spin-off/sequel... only for making it so bad.

The problem, in a nutshell, is that the writers have missed the point on practically everything that made the Death Note films interesting. The intriguing mystical lore about the Death Notes and their keepers is all forgotten about, which is probably better than trying to contrive some re-entrance for them - except that it's replaced by a feeble pseudo-science deadly virus tale that even the cheesiest of direct-to-video American films would be ashamed of. The high level mind games that drove the plot of DN are almost entirely gone - L's opponents are a dim-witted bunch, and in their place is a countdown to destruction and an entirely unforgivable attempt at an action-packed finale. Ugh.

Worst of all, they decided that what L really needed was humanising - to whit, a back-story that reveals him to be part of an alphabetically codenamed secret organisation fighting crime under the stewardship of Watari, and a plot that leaves him taking care of two young children for most of the film. Matsuyama tries his best, and his presentation of L still manages to be simultaneously super-cool and super-cute, but there's only so much he can do with the ill-conceived storyline and juvenile scripting. There are some moments that do work, but they are in a minority. Worth seeing if you enjoyed the Death Note films, just to tie things up, but set your expectations for it several notches down.
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10/10
A good conclusion
talktojulia-119 April 2009
I am a big fan of Death Note and was very satisfied with the 'stunning conclusion' as promised on the DVD case. I think L is a very intriguing character and it was interesting to see a different side to the previous L we had encountered in Death Note 1 and 2. I think Kenichi Matsuyama is a remarkable actor and played his role exceptionally. I heard that he put a lot of his own thoughts and ideas into the character, who he seems to be very attached to from what I've seen in interviews. I can't imagine any other actor who could have played the role as well as Kenichi Matsuyama. He brings a kind of mystery and charm to the character, and you instantly feel drawn to him. The plot itself is attention-grabbing and it was nice to have a change to the usual Death Note story line. I think any more movies following that story line would have become slightly repetitive. The leap through different stages of time helped the viewer to understand elements they may not have fully understood from Death Note 1 and 2. The ending was well written and slightly heart-breaking, I still always feel like crying every time I hear L say his last line. Overall, I think it was a superb movie and definitely worth watching if you are a fan of Death Note.
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5/10
Spin-Off
kosmasp8 April 2009
I imagine you have seen or at least heard of the anime/manga "Death Note". I'm not gonna spoil anything about "Death Note", but as you can imagine, as with every spin-off, you have one major character from "Death Note" appearing in this movie.

This character is none other than "L". A mysterious but very funny character, with some very weird and funny addiction habits. I don't know if this spin-off is based on an anime too, but I can say, that apart from a really fresh and exciting beginning, this movie lacks many things from the original "Death Note" (series). The actor who plays "L" (the same guy who played him in Death Note too) is fantastic in his role depiction. True to his anime roots, but only as much as the story allows him to be.

And there lies the problem. This movie is way too serious (a few absurd moments still exist) and way too dramatic. A shame then, that the thriller elements can't save the movie either. The best moments lie in the comedy or character (mostly L) bits, but even those can't save the movie entirely. My tip: Watch both "Death Note" movies and the anime series instead!
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4/10
So bad , can't believe this is a sequel to the 2 Death Notes
loyolite1 October 2009
This is movie is extremely average with nothing much in it. It's trying to use the success of Death Note to try to sell itself.

I had already read and heard reviews for this movie being horrible. So I had very very very low expectations in this one. But the problem is when you see L , you really start expecting something smart, something intelligent. And you get highly disappointed :-( If they had made this movie without the Death Note characters , it would have be a bad movie. But using the same characters is even worse, as you tend to expect them to do their regular bit. Believe me, when you see L on the screen, you will start thinking that he is upto something, or he will come out with something smart and surprising. But no .. nothing like that at all.

That is the reason why I gave it a 4. Unlike the earlier Death Notes :

* there is hardly a plot

* no brilliant moment at all in the movie

* it goes a little sentimental at times

* lines of L are very often useless

* there is no Ryuk

* there is no Light Yagami

* emotional side of L is seen as he gets along with 2 children

In fact, I am going to stop talking about this movie at all. I'd like to mention at this point , that Death Note 1 and 2 were simply awesome !!!
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8/10
Powerful and intense, a true thriller of its kind!
kojisuzuki3 July 2008
L: Change the World is a spin-off from the Death Note movies, not the mangas. The mangas/anime are better than all the films. Death Note: Part 1 is a better film than L, but I enjoy the last the most. Death Note: Part 2 is all-over the place though.

Hideo Nakata was able to craft an intense and heart-pounding thriller, and Matsuyama Kenichi is just simply amazing as the almost heartless L, but we see more of him as a "human".

Basically, L: Change the World chronicles the last days of L, similar to what Passion of the Christ did to Jesus. Other than the amazing Kenichi, the young boy F is adorable and we see him become Near - who we never see - in the near future; hence the toy robot.

Overall, L: Change the World is a worthy spin-off to the shaky films and superior mangas/anime. Highly recommended!
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8/10
An extremely good watch for L fans.
BeccaDeathNote-x13 April 2009
First of all, I don't know why some people dis this movie- saying "This has nothing to do with Death Note". For the record, that's because it isn't supposed to have anything to do with Death Note.

I went to HMV last weekend and when I saw this movie, I had to buy it- I am a huge fan of L and seeing the title and cover I thought this would be a good watch. I was right.

From the beginning, I enjoyed this movie. I liked that the last days of L's life were spent solving a case,visiting Wammys and smiling?:D I also liked Near's appearance, and no offence but they weren't going to find a Thai boy with white hair. Near was very sweet and his liking for toys and genius ability showed during the course of the movie.

Maki was an interesting character, by the end I had started to like her, In the beginning I despised her to be honest.

I cried at the ending, it was very touching. Showing this was the end. L's final words were very moving and he actually smiled!

L fans will enjoy this movie a lot, I think.

All in all, this was a very good watch and I'm glad that I bought it.

8/10.
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6/10
You're Doing it Wrong!
drizzlingenthalpy13 July 2008
Warning: Spoilers
This film uses the setting of the Death Note films, but lacks what made Death Note so fascinating: an intricate, constantly-changing storyline involving extremely intelligent enemies and their intellectual warfare. L change the WorLd feels kind of like a Godzilla film in which Godzilla is nowhere to be seen and Mothra appears for a few seconds at the beginning. I can't help but feel that it probably would have actually been a better movie if it were not Death Note-related.

Naomi Misora, Watari, Misa and Ryuuk were given cameos, but nothing much was really done with their characters and the film would hardly be any different if they never appeared. Furthermore, what happened to Kira's influence on the world?! Right after burning the Death Notes, we see L helping solve various murder cases, and the main antagonists belong to an organization that must have been planning their attack while Kira was quite active. Not a single mention of Kira's influence is made, and it seems entirely as though the writers forgot that crime was supposed to have gone way down because of people's fear of Kira.

Apparently the film's acting was praised in Japan, but anyone who speaks English will be pulled out of the film by the entirely emotionless (and quite frequent) English dialogue. I'm guessing that most of the actors didn't know what they were saying and were just pronouncing the sentences syllabically.

Numerous opportunities for connections with Death Note were thrown away. The only two throwbacks (aside from the early cameos) were a villain with a scar similar to Mello's and the fact that, at the end of the movie, L names the boy he's been taking care of Near. "Near is a good name," he says. Of course, L change the WorLd's Near looks and acts nothing like the Nate River of the series. When L was trying to figure out the meaning of the letters "MK", I was hoping (and expecting) them to stand for "Mihael Keehl", but there wasn't even a passing reference to the name for fans to recognize.

A couple of moments in the film that were supposed to be serious made me laugh out loud. The first was when L tried standing up straight with triumphant music playing... and several loud spinal cracking noises. The second was when L leaps from the stairs into the airplane in slow motion.

I do consider L change the WorLd worth seeing for Death Note aficionados, but I don't think most fans will feel it lives up to anything else in the franchise.
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3/10
Death Note III but without the good things of Death note
stupidshark28 December 2008
Warning: Spoilers
I Liked "Death Note I/II" too much, both at conceptual level as well as executional level thus as soon as I saw the poster, I grabbed the movie. However, this movie was a disappointment to me as it laked all the good things of Death Notes movies such as tight paced plot, adequate and intriguing twists n turns, the mental battle between Kira and L and the Reaper....

For the starters, movie plot involves the last 23 days of legendary L as he tries to battle out a group of environmentalists whose plan is to make world a better place for living by spreading a deadly Virus (mixture of Ebola and Influenza virus) and thus reducing the size of ecological footprint of mankind by reducing the number of living people rather than researching new energy efficient technologies etc. Wow! what a bunch of green crusaders who do good by killing people (have not they thought of any thing else???) However, L successfully saves the day with the help of a small maths genius and a not-so-small daughter of an virologist. Though L tries to pull out the old charm but most of his acting is focused on acting goofy (read here, eating so nonstoppingly that makes the average viewer nauseating, and sit, walk and type with such an awkward body postures and movement that merely watching them, hurts).

Another dampener is that there is no one intelligent enough to stretch L's mental abilities to the last point (as Kira did earlier) rather here L acts more like anyone secret service agents (he even throws something to save the lil kid in the movie). However the makers of this spin off must have forgotten that if it is any other secret service agent movie than please there are better options than watching almost physically disabled L. So in the end, it is a movie with a hole ridden plot that dwells more on mannerism of L rather than a good storyline.

Come on Guys, Bring Kira Back Please and please Bring the Old L back, at least one more time.
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8/10
L: Change the world
helmutty22 February 2008
Warning: Spoilers
It may not be the best death note movie but it still keep same thrills and suspense. I always like a second sequel for death note and it did come true. This time, horror director Hideo Nakata directs it. When I heard that he was the one to direct L, I knew he would made it thrilling like his other horror movies. I was hoping that he would not screw up the second sequel which is a prequel. At least, Hideo Nakata still kept L's unusual behavior and that is good.

The story: It is the last 23 days of L. It is basically after death note 2 wen Light died, he still have 23 days left to live. He used the 23 days to stop the virus breakout. L is still smart as to outwit his opponents. His opponents want to the virus to spread to the world. I was disappointed that the villains basically just fight, kill and did not really think, at least make them more smarter. L always outwit them and they never had a chance to outwit him. From there, it is a cat and mouse chase. L still have his habits like eating sweet things. It is the first time you will see L in a bit of action. The thrilling story will unfold in this action-packed movie with non-stop music.

Overall: If you are a fan of death note, you should catch this. It may not be related to death note but it has thrilling plot with suspense although it is predictable. While it may have its good and bad points, it is still good to catch it in cinema as you can feel the atmosphere tense. It may not be the best death note movie, but I like it and it is good.
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3/10
L : Change the title
chimera-412 September 2009
This film had f**k all to do with Death Note whatsoever. It felt like they just slotted a few of the characters and a few references into a completely unrelated script. If they'd have treated the movie separately it might have been better but as it stands it's just a blatant excuse to cash in on the good will generated by the first 2 Death Note movies which I thought were excellent....

It's a shame because I like the director, Hideo Nakata, I thought the Ring movies were great, even the US remakes were alright and the direction here is not the problem. The problem is branding the whole thing to rope in an established audience to generate some cash....

Come on, please don't treat your punters with such disrespect....

Now, I have nothing more to say on the subject, thank you move along.......
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1/10
Noes! my 10$ !! give it back
nizsu13 March 2008
Warning: Spoilers
OK I was devastated after I had watched this movie. I wanna run to the box-office and take back my money. What an overrated movie! There are countless of unrelated stuffs putting together. The FBI agent appeared out of nowhere. He even knew where L is and came to help(?).L trusted him(?) The REAL L would never trust an unidentified person like that. N solved a geometry problem and the answer is the plague's solution. Where he got that geometry problem? Why L didn't contact Raito's dad? Raito's dad would help, I am sure.

The acting is terrible. When F reported to L the situation at Thailand, he spoke English. If u notice, he was about to laugh (?) Even a non-native English speaker can realize the actors are speaking crappy English. Their English speaking is worse than my 16 years old brother. If the actors can not speak excellent English, please speak Japanese.

I have admired the superb L in Deathnote. His smart, his talent, his calmness are totally distinctive. However, in this movie, L solved the problem physically (?). He had to receive the help of the others to solve the problems. He never noticed why the girl's Dad ( I forgot her name, but she's one of the 2 children) asked her to do homework everyday and the homework was odd. Even the female doctor ( one of the villain in the movie) discovered that the homework is unusual at the first glance( why, L! u're stupid) Notice it again, L & N communicate through English. Becuz N is Thai. OK, that's fine. But why sometimes L speaks Japanese to the boy and he still understands (?) ( another wtf!).

The jokes are too lame and similar to many movies. That's why if its funny, I can not laugh, because that kind of jokes appeared too much in movies.

In the end, the villains died by themselves. So far, the greatest success of L is stop the airplane ( oh I remembered there is one time he showed his intelligence. It was when he noticed the co-writer's name in a dictionary. But yes, there is only one time). I have seen too many of airplane accidents in movies where our main characters always stop the airplanes not being crashed at the end. Lame storyline.

wtf is that huge title "L CHANGE THE WORLD". What change? Who change? L ? Everything Kenichi Matsuyama did is act cute. I don't have any problem with him acting L's distinctive style. I have problem with him spend too much time acting super cute in the movie. What for? The movie should change the title like "L's cuteness". "CHANGE THE WORLD" is a big word and doesn't suit with this time-consuming movie. The title acts like a window-dressing and nothing else.

On the final note, this movie is for those who love a cute and brainless L. For fans of the REAL L, u should watch it in a boring Sunday. Don't expect in it too much, and don't be deceived by the title. The world is still rotten after this movie.
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8/10
Not Death Note. For Fans Only
jesterification14 March 2008
Warning: Spoilers
The biggest complaint you tend to hear about this movie is that it's 'not like Death Note'. That's because it's not supposed to be Death Note. It's a movie about L. And as far as that goes, I say it's plenty entertaining. Granted, there were so many scenes that sent the entire audience screaming in laughter, but hey, they were already doing that in The Last Name. Some people said that L was made out to be too action-y, but those who followed the original series will remember that L had a surprisingly athletic side to himself as well, playing tennis, mastering Capoeira, who's to say he can't go on the run with a pair of children? All in all, in the end, the ending doesn't really matter, you technically knows what happens in the end. What's important is what's in between, and what that was, was a highly entertaining, if mindless spin off showcasing L and his genius deus ex machina ways for all the fan girls out there. Don't think too much, just enjoy L as he is. I know I had fun watching it.
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4/10
Makes L from the Death Note anime look mediocre and worse than Liam Neeson from Tekken
acidnat23 January 2015
Warning: Spoilers
Giving it a 4 for the first 10-15 minutes which adds on scenes that were skipped from the previous 2 Death Note movies. L was always the strategist and was thinking 2 steps ahead of Kira even...especially in the live action movies. But that's all there is to this movie.

In this 3rd installation, L comes out weak and as smart as Nic Cage could be in any run of the mill Hollywood flick. Its more predictable than a Disney movie after the 45 minute mark.

Personally, I would prefer the anime any day. The justice to it has not been portrayed by the acting or the mind games. The first movie was good... especially with the initial build up (and background score) that was not there in the anime.

The M and N in the anime had better character buildup in 3 episodes than K had in this whole movie. Lets not even talk about F. There is not enough story to explain why the others were at the same league as L. Hell...they aren't...after seeing THIS movie for sure!!!
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3/10
Disappointing
petroskets23 April 2013
In my review for the second part of the Death Note movies I referred to it being a great clash because it's a strategic battle and doesn't include guns and brute force.In this movie however is the exact opposite.Can you imagine a non fitting protagonist for an action movie?That's your guy!L.

Where are all the strategic plans we were shown during the original Death note films?Where is the mastermind seeing through every criminal act in the whole world?It certainly is disappointing when we get to see that in this movie L has no plans at all.Just doing stuff without explanation on why he is doing something or why he is going somewhere.Makes you feel like he is thinking "let's go and we'll see what we'll do when we get there".That is so not L! That's a plain action movie with all the usual saving the world clichés.Want to see it out of curiosity?Try it.As an action movie it ain't bad.But it's clearly not L's style of doing things.
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1/10
A total waste of time to watch...
fbsr000115 March 2013
A spin-off sequel that entirely does not live up its expectations. A total wreck filled with incoherent plots and continuation. Strange decisions and behaviour continually made by almost every single character in the movie. Leaves the viewer in a complete bizarre state of amazement as to why he/she is even watching this movie. Gives the impression that this movie was written and directed by total amateurs or probably even children.

Watching paint dry is a lot more entertaining in comparison. As such, this movie is a complete waste of time to watch, unless you have absolutely nothing else to do. Ie. Either watch it or stare into blank space for 2 hours, whereby staring into the blank space for 2 hours actually seems to be a wiser option.
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1/10
An insult to the Death Note series
Snootz2 January 2018
This movie is a contrived, violent, gory and foul-mouthed (at least in the translations) insult to the legacy of the Death Note series. While using the same actor to play L... his actions are over the top. He types like a monkey, walks like an ape, and has nothing of the flair of his original representation of L.

Intelligence and an original story made the original Death Note a unique work of art. This film contains none of such. Instead it devolves to a basic action / gore thriller that conflicts with the original story line. If we are to accept this story as true, the would have to be two "L"s... identical twins both working non-stop around the clock-- one to deal with this virus and the other to stop Kira. That of course is nonsense and jumps the shark into the troposphere.

This is a poor effort-- poor enough that I give it my rare 1-star two-thumbs down rating that I usually reserve for the worst of schlock movies. This isn't bad enough to be good... and not nearly good enough to be Death Note. As much as I like this actor, even he couldn't pull this one out of the dumpster.

Parental warning: this should by no means be considered a family-worthy film. (Nor even adult-worthy, for that matter.) If you enjoyed Death Note and consider it one of the most original movies ever made... this is likely to be a considerable disappointment.
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7/10
Death Note L Change the World: Hit & miss spin off
Platypuschow24 September 2017
Warning: Spoilers
Let's be clear the Death Note movies were works of art and mostly loyal to the original material, the performances were fantastic and they delivered on every front.

I was deeply concerned about this L themed spin off for a number of reasons, primarily because it's very existence felt like a cash grab.

Immediately it felt like it was part of the franchise, integrated into the last film and following on nicely.

Of course if the movies had followed the original material this movie for obvious reasons would never have been possible.

Trouble is now it was entirely L's story and could he carry a film by himself? Honestly, no. And that's a shame because bringing L into other cases could in itself be brilliant and worthy of an entire television show but somehow, someway it simply didn't work.

L himself was great, the actor once again knocks it out of the park but is dropped into a non-Death Note themed story that simply isn't worthy of him or the franchise.

Thanks to him and the general quality of the film it's still quite good but isn't as smart as we've come to expect from the series and just not that great.

Add a team of interesting characters with L and I stand by this being perfect for a television show but as a movie it just doesn't stack up.

The Good:

L is perfect once again

Is following on from the events of the main movies

The Bad:

Story is very bland

Not as well written as the Death Note movies

Isn't particularly intelligent

Things I Learnt From This Movie:

Even when provided with an excellent lead a movie can still fall flat
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6/10
Watchable, thanks in part to the lead actor
Leofwine_draca16 August 2016
Warning: Spoilers
The third and final film in the DEATH NOTE trilogy isn't quite as good as the first two films: they were back-to-back thrillers that slotted perfectly together into a quite wonderful double bill. This is more spin-off than sequel, with the fantasy trappings relegated to the sidelines and the emphasis on a traditional thriller centring around L's final 23 days on earth. Much of the plot centres around the outbreak of a highly contagious virus, reminding me of the Dustin Hoffman starrer, OUTBREAK. L is the protagonist thrown into this slightly predictable plot and much of the film's charm comes from his character.

This is the film that seeks to humanise L so that he becomes more than just a series of quirky gestures. The third quarter of the film basically departs from the thriller aspects and just focuses on our hero hanging out with a couple of kids and getting involved in society. Kenichi Matsuyama is absolutely wonderful in this role and his presence alone kept me glued to the screen when otherwise this would have been nothing more than a forgettable, convoluted thriller. RING director Hideo Nakata enjoys playing up the grisly aspects of the virus outbreak, with lots of bleeding pustules and eyeballs, and throws in a couple of stand-out moments along the way (L's way of boarding the airliner and the village set-piece are highlights here). Although the supporting cast is populated by strong actors, none of the other characters are ever more than one-dimensional so the film's a bit frustrating in that respect. To be fair it's not a great film at all really, but it is a watchable one – and most of that is down to Matsuyama's presence.
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6/10
Could have been better...
paul_haakonsen28 December 2015
As much as I do like the L character from the "Death Note" franchise, then this movie just didn't offer as much as I had hoped for. It was certainly better than the first "Death Note" movie, but I will say that it was approximately as entertaining as "Death Note: The Last Name" (part two of the movies), but lacking a bit in its story.

As with the previous movies, despite this being a stand-alone movie, then Ken'ichi Matsuyama carried the role of L with flair and perfection. And with this actor in the lead you kind of tend not to focus too much about the lack of a deeper storyline. And, personally, I found it to be a treat that Tatsuya Fujiware (who played Light in the previous movies) wasn't appearing in this movie.

If you watched the previous movies mostly for the death gods Ryuk and/or Rem, then there is very Little for you to get excited about in "L: Change the World".

While the storyline wasn't the deepest or most thought through of stories, then the movie does wrap up the story of L quite nicely in the wake of "Death Note" and "Death Note: The Last Name".
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6/10
Only Death Note Movie That Might Disappoint
dcfemella30 April 2009
Today, fellow movie expert Punchy Critic and I went to watch a special viewing of "L: Changed the World." It is the final chapter of the live-action "Death Note" movies, which is based off of the popular anime series of the same name. Before I went to the theater, I kept reminding myself not to compare this to the anime series because this movie should be isolated from the first two live-action films. Why? The second Death Note deviated from the anime series in a big way, so I knew that this third film was going to be a completely different animal; It was.

Campy and cheesy doesn't even begin to describe this movie. The script was poorly written to the point that I was cringing throughout the entire movie. The movie was about L's final 23 days on this Earth and his final case. The case was about an environmental group who developed a lethal virus to wipe out human beings for their role in destroying the world around us. It seems that everyone is "going green," and this didn't leave Death Note behind. There was no antidote for the virus, so the group was trying to find one, so they can go ahead with their vicious plans.

Throughout the entire film, they kept referencing the United States. As always, the United States got blamed for everything. I am so tired of these "the USA is to blame for everything going on in the world" plots. It was so typical of them to do this. I knew before the movie started that they were probably going to go that route, and of course, they didn't disappoint.

Another annoying factor was how they totally thought the audience forgot a major part of the storyline. In the beginning, a Thailand village gets infected by the lethal virus and men with Hazmat suits come to take blood from the infected to take for research. One of the operatives, who is like L, befalls the fate as the villagers and tries to warn the initiative that L is part of. He is accompanied by a little boy, who even though he was in the village, is completely symptom free. However, for the rest of the movie, til the last 30 minutes, no one thought about it. You are telling me that L can find that Light Yagami is Kira, but he didn't think about that fact? Punchy and I were cracking up.

The Hazmat Suits being used as a fashion statement was pretty funny. It came in all colors of the rainbow: yellow, blue, orange, red, gray. I told Punchy that I wanted my own Hazmat suit because they sure were pretty. It didn't make any sense. What was the point of having different colors? It just made the movie more cheesy.

The death scene of the leading scientist was laughable. For a moment, I thought I had started watching a bad horror film. The blood looked, like Punchy said, like it was sweet -n- sour sauce. For me, I thought some of it looked like water with red food coloring. Additionally, the amount of time it took that dude, who had just injected himself with tons of the virus, went from sympathy to laughable. Everyone was laughing because he kept coming back and back and back.

The environmental group was another stupidity. Here are these nerdy students who are working with plants. All of a sudden, they become these hardcore vigilantes who know one could beat. The girl upset me the most because she was skinny as a rail, I assume had no combat training, but she turned into this psychotic, blood-thirsty killer who everyone should be afraid of. Ughhhh...I kept whispering to Punchy, "What the hell is that about?"

They took L's eccentricity and turned it into something that we are suppose to mock and laugh at. It irked me how they tried to make him this physically weak individual who couldn't even lift a finger. Even though I said I wouldn't compare this to the anime series, I had to on this. Why? L is suppose to be the same character as in the anime. In it, L knew martial arts and could beat the best of them.

I can't really type more because then I will reveal the entire plot, and I don't want to spoil it for anyone. The movie was disappointing. Even if it was more of a standalone movie, it still shouldn't have deviated that much from its roots. It was this slapstick comedy that was still trying to have something of the Death Note series.

When the credits rolled, everyone around us stayed behind because they promised that someone would win an autograph of the actor who plays L. Punchy and I looked at one another and rolled out.
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9/10
L Movie
darmal5-128 July 2008
Warning: Spoilers
RE: response to night_wng response to Simon: this movie cannot possibly be a PREQUEL if it the last 23 days of L's life (duh!) Okay..first off, as you have read...this is NOT a DEATHNOTE MOVIE not is it any part of the manga... this is obviously an attempt to cash in on the L character by the studio. Now, that said.... I loved it.

I was amazed by the L actor in the first two movies and bought this (thank you ebay!) for the character of L, as portrayed by the actor. This film did not disappoint. Sure the writing made everyone dim and there was no real "battle of the minds" as with DN, but you really like L in this one. SUre it is a softer side, yes it is cliché, but dang it I don't know... I really felt something knowing that these were his last days and there would be no more L. It kinda made a hollow bit in me.

WOuld I love a Prequel with L in action against some super diabolical villains? sure. It wouldn't have anything to do with a Death Note, but it could be cool (very Sherlock Holmes or, god forbid, Davinci Code).

Buy/rent/see this movie for what it is. Another chance to see L
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7/10
L saves the movie.
diana-a9328 September 2012
Death Note once again came with the 3rd movie, Unfortunately, it's not as good as the first 2.

Somethings that may annoy you in this movie :

*The plot is weak.

*Some of the acting is bad.

*the story isn't stabled.

*The dialogue is kinda off place.

*It's slow paced.

HOWEVER, the pleasure of seeing Kenichi Matsuyama acting on the screen is totally worth watching, he put so much personality in the character that you can't help but smiling when you see him on the screen, his remarkable acting made the movie watchable and makes you forget the bad plot.

So is it worth watching ? yes it is, if you're an L fan, you're gonna have a blast, because this movie is about L, and his point of view about the world.
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