I just got back from watching the two movies that were released for the Puella Magi Madoka Magica franchise. I'm not doing a review of the movies. Everyone has an opinion on Madoka Magica and nothing I can say will change that. While I personally enjoyed it, I thought I'd save people time by saying who I think should actually watch these movies. By know almost everyone knows that they're just retellings of the story, but whether or not they're worth a watch is simply opinion, and I thought I'd offer mine.
For fans of the series (and other people who thought the series was "good but not great"):
Watch it. Yes, it's the same story over again, but there are a few major reasons that you should spend your time and money watching the movies if possible.
1. The story fits a movie format better. The TV series of Madoka Magica is very fragmented due to the "episode" format. The OPs/EDs, and general breaks in between episodes create gaps in the drama that the anime builds up. It's much easier to sit through a 2 hour movie in one sitting than the 6 or so episodes that it'd cover. Even in the scenes that weren't changed, they came across as much more dramatic and emotional because the story is allowed to build upon itself rather than having to catch the viewer's attention each episode.
2. The animation bumps improve the overall quality. Most of the animation is from the series, but the anime is highlighted by new art. Whether it's a new background, transition, or completely new animation, it always added to the story rather than adding superfluous money burning spectacles. It seemed like a "special edition" of the TV series, with new art to expand the depth of the world and without the stupid "Greedo shot first" changes.
3. The theater makes it bigger. Obviously there's the bumps that come from watching it in a theater, but if you're a diehard fan of the series you already have it on Blu-Ray for your sick home theater setup anyway :P
For those who have never seen the series:
Watch it. For the reasons I stated above, you should watch the movies, preferably before watching the TV series. Firstly, it's slightly shorter, more streamlined, and allows you to watch the story as the writers intended without arbitrary break ups (such as deciding to stop watching after the second episode). There are a few things the series includes that aren't in the movies, but they're mostly superficial.
For those who watched and didn't like the series:
Don't bother watching it. It's still fundamentally the same anime, not a reimagining. If you didn't like the series, the movie has nothing new to offer, what you see is what you get.
So if you fall into one of the two categories I mentioned, see if the movie is coming to your area soon.