Polarizing though it may be, this take on the Death Note franchise still manages to be scary when it tries.
- To the right, the FBI agents throwing themselves off a building. You even get a chance to see one of the agents gruesomely slam into the concrete, splattering their blood and brains, before an abrupt Smash to Black.
- The shot of the agent hitting the ground is directly preceded by a shot of an Asian mother and her daughter watching the agents fall. A child had to witness that.
- And the worst part is that it's not Light doing it. It's Mia.
- The scene where Light first meets Ryuk. Not only is Ryuk in shadow all the while, but he seems to goad Light into using the Death Note, presumably for the first time. And how does Light use it? When he sees a pair of thugs harassing (and possibly attempting to sexually assault) a young woman, he writes one member's name, and then adds "decapitation."
- Light decapitating Kenny Doyle, while over the top, is incredibly brutal. It doesn't come off at the neck. It comes off at the mouth/jaw.
- While we're at it, just Ryuk in general. In addition to being portrayed with sinister menace by Willem Dafoe, he's been redesigned to be sharper and more angular than his Manga and 2006 film counterpart and is much, much bigger. He retains his More Teeth than the Osmond Family grin and his gleaming red eyes are enhanced to reflect the "God" aspect in Death God, as upon closer inspections they aren't just glowing... but reflecting galaxies within.
Margin note: Don't trust Ryuk. He is not your pet. He is not your friend.
- On this version Ryuk is the one who actually executes the deaths as they're written on the Death Note and he makes sure to make them as over the top as possible for his own sick amusement.
- The reveal of just how dangerous Mia really is.Written in the Death Note: Light Turner's heart will stop at midnight.
- At the very end of the film, L has a page of the Death Note to himself, and he knows who Light really is. And he has a pen at the ready.
- L's maniacal laughing at finding the page, and then immediately composing himself. That shows he has really Jumped Off The Slippery Slope...
- The training that the potential L's go through, children are put in a "preparation room" for SEVEN MONTHS till they go insane, and the ones who don't have god knows what done to them to mold them into detectives... and L had this done to him at the age of SIX! Though they may have made a more traditional Wammy's house later as the building is shown to be abandoned thankfully.
- Ryuk's Armor-Piercing Response to Light's threat to put his name in the Death Note;
- While also a Moment of Awesome, Light's near-effortless manipulation of events in the third act definitely shows the manipulative nature of Light's anime counterpart coming to the forefront after the viewers got to know a seemingly less malicious and powerful version of the character.