L: Change the WorLd (also known as Death Note: L, Change the WorLd and Death Note III) is the third film in the Death Note live-action film series. It is an original spin-off story focusing on L after the events of the previous film, Death Note: The Last Name. Director Hideo Nakata told The Daily Yomiuri that he wanted to exhibit the "human side" of L that was not exhibited in the Death Note series.
Two versions of the film were shown in the United States on April 29 and 30, 2009. The first version of the film shown was in Japanese with English subtitles and the second version shown was dubbed in English with the same voice actors from the English dubbed Death Note anime, not including Watari, like the US release of its predecessors. The film was released on DVD in the US on August 18, 2009.
The DVD complete set, released in Japan on June 25, 2008, included making-of footage of the film, marketing campaign footage, a bonus DVD titled "Outside of File No. 15," a short spinoff drama titled "The Man L Made a Fool of the Most: the File on Police Detective Matsuda," other hidden footage and stills from the movie, and three cards depicting promotional images of the film.
The film was priced down and reissued on DVD on December 1, 2010. In October 2011, it was reissued on Blu-ray as part of the promotional hype for the release of Death Note: Light Up the NEW World.
The film was adapted into a light novel of the same name, authored by "M" and published on December 25, 2007, weeks before the film's premiere.
The film begins sometime before the events of the first film. Naomi Misora and Raye Iwamatsu are on assignment for L in America, and L monitors them through surveillance cameras on his computer. Watari comments that L must really trust Naomi to have her on a second assignment after the LABB case. As Naomi makes advances on the current case, L asks Watari to make preparations to go to Japan because there's a 97% chance that Kira is there. He's not sure that he'll survive it.
120 days later, in Thailand, a group of people in hazmat suites arrive in a village that's suffering a deadly virus outbreak. As they take blood samples from the infected, F sees what's going on and flees the village with a nameless boy who seems to be immune to the virus. The researchers leave and the city is bombed to control the outbreak. The same group hunts down and kills F, but F leaves the boy with a phone number to call, along with his personal pendant that reads "F." In Japan, where the Kira case is ongoing, Watari receives the news that F is dead, and L writes in the Death Note that he will die in 23 days. L then asks Watari to bring in Misa Amane so they can end the case.
At the Infectious Disease Center of Asia, a girl named Maki Nikaido is injected with a chemical by her father Dr. Kimihiko Nikaido. After Maki leaves, Dr. Nikaido and Dr. Kimiko Kujo (aka "K") go into the Bio-Infection Defense Ward to examine the virus samples from Thailand, which Washington has sent them. They find that the virus is a highly infectious strain of the flu crossed with Ebola. Its rate of infection is a 100 times that of the Ebola virus and that it has mutated in the last 20 hours.
Watari dies during the Kira investigation. After the case ends, Ryuk tries to talk L out of burning the notebooks, but L burns them anyway. He emails other Wammy's House members (D, P, Q, G, I, E, and K) that Watari has passed, and he receives a response from K seconds later that she will mourn him.
The creators of the virus are revealed to be members an ecological company and the creators kill the boss of the company.
L solves a few cases before he dies, he takes the boy under his wing with L and he manages to get the pendant that F gave him, the pendant is revealed to be a video of what he has discovered of the virus.
Dr. Nikaido gives Maki a pendant as well and a syringe of what is believed to be the cure to the virus. the ecology company raids the lab that Dr. Nikaido works at and it's revealed that Dr. Kujo is the leader of the of the team that made the virus and that they plan to release it onto the world and cure those who truly care about the environment. Dr. Nikaido injects himself with the virus and destroys the cure,upon his request Dr. Kujo destroys the lab to prevent the virus from spreading. Maki, who saw everything, runs away and confides in L.
Dr. Kujo contacts L in hopes that he can find the missing data. Dr. Kujo's team raids Ls headquarters to find Maki and extract the data from her. In retaliation, Maki injects herself with the syringe that Dr. Nikaido gave her which turns out to be the virus. However, Maki shows no signs of infection. L, the boy, and Maki escape and are joined by an FBI agent named Suruga as they escape in their mobile headquarters.
L hacks and deletes all the information that Dr. Kujos team have and he departs from Suruga. Buying a small device, L notices that the boy has an interest in toys. L goes to visits Dr. Nikaidos assistant Dr. Koichi Matsudo in hopes of finding a cure. Along the way Dr. Kujos team trick the public into thinking that Maki is infected and they are forced to cycle the rest of the way.
Once they reach the lab the boy comes solves an equation that he saw and came up with the number 13:11 which L deduced to MK which is an abbreviation of Midkine. They test the boy for midkine due to him being the sole survivor of the village. After a picnic that Maki had with L and the boy, Maki runs away in order to infect Dr. Kujo but fails.
L deduces that they plan to use Maki to spread the virus around the world, Dr. Matsudo already has made an antidote and makes many more. L meets Suruga again and they go to the airport in order to stop Dr. Kujo. L successfully stops Dr. Kujo and injects her with the antidote, Maki attempts to kill Dr. Kujo but is convinced by L not to.
L drops off the boy at Wammys House and gives the boy the toy that he wanted and gives him his name 'Near.' As he walks away he tells Watari that he wants to live in this world a little bit more.
During the end credits scene L is seen eating a piece of chocolate and leaves his room. Possible leading up to his death in Death Note the last name. The screen fades to black and the text saying "L. Lawliet, Rest In Peace."
|L||Ken'ichi Matsuyama||Alessandro Juliani|
|The boy (aka Near)||Narushi Fukuda||Michael Strusievici|
|Maki Nikaido||Mayuko Fukuda||Chantal Strand|
|Kimihiko Nikaido||Shingo Tsurumi||Ted Cole|
|Kimiko Kujo (aka K)||Youki Kudoh||Cathy Weseluck|
|Koichi Matsudo||Sei Hiraizumi||Michael Dobson|
|Asao Konishi||Bokuzō Masana||Mark Oliver|
|Tamotsu Yoshizawa||Yuta Kanai||Kirby Morrow|
|Hatsune Misawa||Megumi Sato||Tabitha St. Germain|
|Shin Kagami||Renji Ishibashi||John Novak|
|Hideaki Suruga||Kiyotaka Nanbara||Brian Dobson|
|Daisuke Matoba||Masanobu Takashima||John Murphy|
|Watari||Shunji Fujimura||Ron Halder|
|F||Kazuki Namioka||Richard Ian Cox|
|Azetsu Mokotu||Hao Ganhane|
|Misa Amane||Erika Toda||Shannon Chan-Kent|
|Ryuk||Shidou Nakamura (voice)||Brian Drummond|
|Naomi Misora||Asaka Seto||Nicole Oliver|
|Sasaki||Yōji Tanaka||Bill Switzer|
|Light Yagami||Tatsuya Fujiwara||Brad Swaile|
|Yagure Mokotu||Ayui Naisora||Megan Hollingshead|
|Raye Iwamatsu||Shigeki Hosokawa||Michael Adamthwaite|
- Theme song: "I'll Be Waiting" by Lenny Kravitz.
- Soundtrack: Sound of L Change the WorLd, with music composed by Kenji Kawai.
- Up until March 5, 2008, there was total of 2,200,000 in attendance (a total of approximately 250,000,000 yen) for this film. March 5 was also Ken'ichi Matsuyama's birthday, so he celebrated both his birthday and the success of the film.
- The Death Note One-Shot Special was released as part of the hype for the film in Weekly Shounen Jump magazine, which also included a lot of film advertisement. The magazine Jump Square also featured a cover page L and a poster of Near as part of the advertisement for the movie.
- Official website (Encore Films)