Death Note Re-light #1: Visions of a God
The dark fantasy series Death Note
(2006) proved so popular that audiences refused to let it end: two rewritten and re-edited versions of the ending were broadcast in Japan in 2007 and 2008. The story has been adapted into three live-action films, and Re-Light
, a two-hour TV special, aired in 2009.
Except for the opening and closing bookends of the bored, alienated Ryuuk talking with another Shinigami (god of death), Re-Light consists entirely of re-cut footage from the TV series. Brilliant high school student Light Yagami finds the Death Note, a notebook Ryuuk drops into human space. If anyone writes a person's name in the notebook, that person dies. After testing the Death Note's powers, Light launches a grandiose vigilante campaign: he will rid the world of criminals to create his version of a perfect society. The most exciting parts of Death Note pit Light against the eccentric but brilliant investigator known only as "L." But cutting the 37-episode series into a two-hour special reduces the plot to so much animated coleslaw. Characters and subplots appear and disappear: the filmmakers include part of the sequence in which L has himself handcuffed to Light, but they don't explain why he does it or why they're unchained in later scenes. Fans of Death Note who want to see more of Light and L will have more fun with the live-action features Death Note, Death Note Movie II: The Last Name, and Death Note 3: L Change the World. (Rated T+ Older Teen: suitable for ages 15 and older: grotesque imagery, violence, violence against women, alcohol and tobacco use) --Charles Solomon