Death Note 2017: An In-Depth Look at the Controversial Film on 123MOVIES
The release of the American adaptation of Death Note on 123MOVIES in 2017 was met with mixed reactions from fans of the original manga and anime series. Directed by Adam Wingard, the film starred Nat Wolff as Light Turner, a high school student who gains the power to kill anyone whose name he writes in a supernatural notebook. The film also featured Lakeith Stanfield as L, the eccentric detective tasked with tracking down Light and stopping his killing spree.
Despite its star-studded cast and impressive visual effects, Death Note 2017 received criticism for its departure from the source material and its whitewashing of the main characters. In this article, we will take a closer look at the controversies surrounding the film and analyze its strengths and weaknesses.
The Whitewashing Controversy
One of the most significant criticisms of Death Note 2017 was its casting of white actors in the roles of Light and L, who were originally Japanese in the manga and anime series. This decision sparked outrage among fans who accused the filmmakers of whitewashing and erasing Asian representation in Hollywood.
In response to the backlash, Wingard defended his casting choices, stating that he wanted to create a diverse cast that reflected the multicultural society of Seattle, where the film is set. However, many fans felt that this explanation was insufficient and that the filmmakers missed an opportunity to cast Asian actors in prominent roles.
The Departure from the Source Material
Another point of contention for fans of the original Death Note series was the film’s departure from the source material. While the basic premise of the story remained intact, many elements were changed or omitted entirely. For example, Light’s character was significantly altered from his manga and anime counterpart, making him more sympathetic and less morally ambiguous.
Additionally, the film introduced a new character named Mia Sutton, played by Margaret Qualley, who becomes Light’s love interest and partner in crime. This addition was seen by some fans as unnecessary and detracted from the original story’s focus on the battle of wits between Light and L.
The Strengths of the Film
Despite its controversies, Death Note 2017 had some strengths that should not be overlooked. The film’s visual effects were impressive, particularly in its portrayal of Ryuk, the demonic god of death who serves as Light’s accomplice. Willem Dafoe’s voice acting for Ryuk was also praised for its sinister and menacing tone.
The film’s soundtrack, composed by Atticus Ross and Leopold Ross, was another highlight. The score featured a mix of electronic and orchestral elements that added to the film’s dark and suspenseful atmosphere.
Finally, the film’s pacing was well-done, with a steady buildup of tension leading to a climactic finale. While it may not have been faithful to the source material, Death Note 2017 was still an entertaining and engaging thriller that kept audiences on the edge of their seats.
In conclusion, Death Note 2017 was a controversial film that divided fans of the original manga and anime series. While it had some strengths, such as its visual effects, soundtrack, and pacing, it also faced criticism for its whitewashing of the main characters and departure from the source material. Ultimately, whether or not one enjoys the film will depend on their expectations and familiarity with the original series. For those looking for a faithful adaptation, Death Note 2017 may disappoint, but for those seeking a thrilling and suspenseful ride, it is worth a watch.