Before I get bashed for not watching the entire movie... I watched it all (both ova episodes) Completely. In fact, I watched this anime for the sole reason that it was so hated because I found one of the reviews really funny. I don't think bad reviews are nessesarily bad for publicity. I think they are a good thing in this case. For such a crappy anime... it is good to go into it with little to no expectations. That way you can see it for what it really is and not constantly compare it to what you were hoping for. So here is what I have to say about it after seeing it.
The story is crap... others may disagree but I have seen nearly nothing worse. If I put it up againt the anime Dante's Inferno, I would watch that multiple times before having to suffer though this even one more time. That being said. I agree with the shows vocal admirers about something... This anime is not aimed toward satan worshipers (though there may be some who do like it, who knows) It is true that the bad guys are unoriginal cliche and satanic. However, the good guys are not satanic and although there is no real ending to the series. I assume that it would end with the protagonist's victory.
It is hard to fit a whole story into 2 ovas so I simpathize with it's creators. However, leaving things as they were was just wrong. If they felt the need to do that, they shouldn't have even started the 2nd ova. If they just had it end with the first ova ending and the evil man being happy because things were still going according to his plans that would be a true cliffhanger. What we got at the end of the 2nd ova was not a cliffhanger. It was too open ended. It was just bad story telling.
The idea's behind the story are stale. I mean really stale. The only thing to watch this for is the extreme violence and nothing more. Although if you are looking for extreme violence there are plenty of anime out there that actually have a decent story and plot. More recent ones have better animation too. I can't even call this one a classic. Now, if they played their cards right even with a such a worn out and stale story it could have gotten a slightly better score from me if it was left on some sort of decent stopping point. It didn't have to show a ending for a better rating just some sort of idea of direction. It just left way to many unanswered questions. Especially for how simple minded the story was.
There are parts in which there is no explination for what happens or who certain people are and why they are significant. They spend entirely too much time with the opening of the second movie and little stupid insignificant scenes instead of diving into the plot more with the little time they had. For example: They show a woman who obviously has a thing for Jubei (one of 2 women) get raped and killed. She is screaming and nobody even notices. It shows nothing about how she ends up in this predicament or how she is all alone in a place that nobody can hear her. She is just there and it just happens. Thats how the whole second movie is. Things just happen... thats all. No rhyme or reason... no logic or thought behind it. The pacing is all over the place... I mean worse than anything I have ever seen before. We spend over 1/2 of the time listening to narration and seeing what Jubei was doing at that point in his life before the guy from his past is reborn and starts massively killing people while naked... the end. There is no motivations known for satan's followers. There is no information about anything at all. That is why this movie sucks.
I have said absolutely nothing about the corrilation between Ninja Scroll and this movie, because that was what the pro Ninja Resurrection people were saying is all that people could say bad about it. So I intentionally didn't say much. The only thing I will say is this. I was lucky enough to read the reviews that stated that it had nothing to do with Ninja Scroll so I already knew that going into it.
There is a lot more I could harp on about the story. Giving off spicific issues with parts of the movies that I have. However, if I do that with all my issues then this story section would be so long that nobody in their right mind would ever read it. So I gave the story a 1.5. This is because it sucks. However, if you are looking for violence for the sake of violence then it could work for some people.
The animation is not bad for how old it is. I will say that. Put up against recent anime it obviously could never hold it's own. However, the animation is definately the best part of this anime and I would put it above average for it's age. So I gave it a 6.
The sound was a little below average if I don't put personal feelings into it. However, if I speak from a personal preference standpoint I would say it barely deserves a 3. The music isn't to my taste. The sound affects are forgivable given what they were like at the time. However, the voice acting... was pretty bad. As the voice actors spoke most of them I could see them in my head reading from a script and being told to use more feeling so they overdo the feeling in their voice at times which makes it almost comical. Amaturish voice acting to say the least. Because of the fact that some people may like the background music more than others though I will give the sound catagory a 4.5
Other than Jubei the protagonist. All the characters are pretty flat. We know little about them and what we do know is inconsequential
Jubei - The only character kinda fleshed out in this series. Has one eye. Kicked out by his father, worked for tokagawa government until his early retirement because his conscience was eating at him. So instead he teaches people how to weild weapons instead. 2 of his female students have a thing for him. One looks more beautiful and mature. The other pretty but a tomboy. He is unkept and although a good fighter gives the air of a general slacker about the same personality as the Jubei from Ninja Scroll. Though he looks much different and seems more naive.
Girl 1 - Can't remember her name already sorry. She is the one who is raped and killed. She is pretty. She finds herself in a place in the middle of the night sleeping and unable to be heard by her traveling companions for some reason or another. She is raped and murdered. She was a skilled fighter... though she was taken out without doing anything.
Girl 2 - The one who claimed Jubei agreed to marry her when she was 8. After they leave his estate at Tokogawa's order for women nothing is said or shown about her. She was with the one who was raped and murdered yet we see nothing about this one at all. So what happens to her or why she was not with the other girl is unknown.
2nd comming of Christ turned Satan (I am not making this bull up) and i forgot his name. - This guy is killed in the first movie only to be resurected in the 2nd 1/2 way though by pulling himself out of a woman's body killing her completely in the process. Reborn to reek havoc I guess. He was a decent guy originally. If he was really the son of god couldn't he ask for the truth from god... or maybe sense evil? He seemed to get his help a awful lot to fight and show signs. Anyway, this person was good but decided to take the path of evil after some children Jubei spared were killed by this guy's mentor who did so in order to enrage him and turn him into satan I guess. He starts off good and then goes completely bonkers.
Christ/Satan's mentor - He is a old man not much is known about this guy other than he is evil and wanted Christ to turn into satan I guess. He played like he believed in god and for some reason nobody doubted him. He cuts his finger of after Christ/Satan goes for wrongful revenge and gets his arms cut off and has the finger violate his daughter making her have sex with him while he is dying and the statue behind them crys... this guys motivations are never said so maybe he has no motivations. After all, nothing is explained well in these movies anyway, even with the time consuming narration at the beginning of both episodes.
The rest of the characters are Lackys for good/Lackys for evil. Nothing is really known about any of them so writing about them would be a waste of time.
Because of the lack of information I cannot give the characters... any of them good marks. With the exception of Jubei they are all unknown for the most part. I gave the Characters 2.5 it would have been lower if not for Jubei and the 2 women who liked him.
I would stay away from this one. I gave it a 3 and I am being generous. Even if the animation was okay. You cannot watch a story for the animation alone. If watch this one go into it with no expectations... in fact, go into it with expectations that it will be a waste of time. That way you have nothing to complain about when it is.