Death Note: Light up the NEW World takes place 10 years after the last films. It passes the torch on to L’s successor, as he teams up with law enforcement to try to capture the killer or killers that are causing folks to literally drop dead all over the world. The deaths are reminiscent of the “Kira” killings featured in the first two films.
There’s a simple explanation – The God of Death has sent six Death Notes to Earth. Who will be the worthy successor to Light? The stakes have been raised and Ryuk is back to cause some havoc.
I was hyped on watching this film due to it following the storyline from the last two films but only ten years later and with six Death Notes. Remember, each Death Note has a Shinigami guarding or representing. Now, unless my memory is mush, outside of Ryuk, there was only one other Shinigami featured. It was a female Death God named Ama. I should also mention that there was another Shinigami named Beppo, who appears and tells the investigators about the six Death Notes on Earth.
Death Note: Light up the NEW world has an amazing opening and set-up that gets the movie going on a nice pace. One of the few drawbacks are that the main characters in this film are not as captivating as Light and L were. Ryuk is also featured way less than he was in the first two films, which is not cool, since that’s who we really want to see. The inclusion of Ama and Beppo is neat in a creepy sort of way, but that’s just due to their character design.
The body count is piled high and the CGI for the Death Gods has come a long way in ten years. Ryuk’s face has much more crazy detail than it did in the first film. The procedural and thriller aspects of the film are also entertaining enough. Light and L do make “cameos” but they are missed as main characters. I should also warn folks that there is a brief after-credit sequence, as well.
It has been a week of Death Note galore! Death Note: Light up the NEW world is by no means better than the first two films but is better than the Netflix version. It’s a worthy entry into the Japanese world of the Death Note franchise.
Death Note: Light up the NEW world is presented in 1080p, 2.35:1. Ignore the labeling that has it at 1.78:1 – only the first two films have the open matte. Death Note: Light up the NEW world on Blu-ray shines bright in terms of contrast and sharpness levels. I did not detect any instances of blur or boosting. The film is only a couple of years old and carries on the tradition of looking great. Black levels are spot on and even softness levels have improved. Ryuk looks better than he did in the last two films. Granted, this film takes place and was shot 10 years after the first two films came out. Many things have advanced. The transfer, however, is pretty good.
Death Note: Light up the NEW world is presented in Dolby TrueHD 5.1 lossless. Again, the film sounds great. Dialogue levels are pristine and the surround channel mix gets a hefty workout – especially towards the end. The LFE subwoofer channel also shakes it up a bit. Thankfully, there is only one language version of the film and it is in Japanese – there is no pesky dubbed version on this Blu-ray edition. English subtitles are provided.
The pickings are quite slim on this Blu-ray. A Japanese trailer, TV spots, and trailers for other Funimation titles are included. A DVD and Digital Copy are also included.
- Japanese trailer
- TV Spots
- Digital Copy
The Final Assessment
Death Note: Light up the NEW world is not as great as the first two films from the mid 2000’s, but there’s a lot to like. The main storyline and some of the clever way folks met their untimely fates make for some great entertainment. The Ryuk CGI has vastly improved but he seemed to have less screen time here than in the first two films combined, so be warned, if you’re a Ryuk fan.
Death Note: Light up the NEW World is out on Blu-ray Combo Pack January 22, 2019 from Funimation
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