A young mystic without a past, Kujaku was born under a dark omen possessed of incredible supernatural powers. Raised by priests, he has learned to use these powers for good. But the evil Siegfried von Mittgard seeks to steal his birthright, and rule the world as the Regent of Darkness. He has dispatched bloodthirsty minions to destroy Kujaku before he can awaken to his destiny. Now, Kujaku must unravel the riddle of his past, before the power within consumes him!
This is basically a series of three different movies, so much so that the art-style isn't even the same throughout. Each ova does carry the same cast of main characters though, but the story isn't continuous and is more a set of three different supernatural mysteries. That isn't saying this is a detective show though. This is more of an atmospheric action series as-well as a light thriller (mostly due to the ominous presentation at many times). The stories are at varying degrees of interesting.
The first story isn't very intriguing and is actually more of an opening to the characters, but that isn't a justification
as that'd be an unnecessarily long introduction - the first ova just has a bland story. The second ova also has a cliche run-of-the-mill story for the Akira 80's, but it isn't quite bland since it carries all of that Akira gore. The second ova is definitely the most action-heavy of the three. The third ova is the most story-focused and carries the most impressive animation in a reserved and well-proportioned sense. The third ova definitely doesn't have as wild and wacky of action, but there are no scenes that you might wince at, it's continuously of good quality. The directing is also more-or-less good throughout all there, but the third ova really was striking in its presentation which led me to believe there were different directors working on these, but MAL seems to disagree - only linking to Rintaro (who is a great director still). Beyond directing, the characters aren't that great and are at times solely tolerable. There is a macho guy throughout who is constantly portrayed as a bro-mance tsundere to the main character, risking his butt to help the MC then turning to the side to say "it wasn't for you, you know?" Get's old, but thankfully the third ova seemed to care very little for the characters and more for the story and the villain. The villains of the first two ovas aren't interesting in the least and are typical world-conquering powerhouses, while the third is actually quite a bit more unique and detailed. Even though the third is a better and more interesting character though, her story isn't that exciting still and her ranting about it dragged on too long for my tastes. I got to say though that the soundtrack for these ovas are effective and I found myself ripping a lot of the end-credits songs to listen later. The soundtracks are all 80's electronic in some fashion, but they sound different enough that you can also reinforce that feeling that these ovas are all made separately as different beasts. I'd love to download the soundtracks for these.
I'd say all three of these movies are worth the watch, but if you don't feel like watching them all I can be more refined in my recommendations.
* If you love 80's animation, it's gore, and it's wackiness, watch the second ova.
* If you love something that's well-directed and good cinema, watch the third ova.
* If you just want a little dark-grittiness with simplicity and action as-well (basically somewhere in-between what the other two ova's offer) watch the first ova.
In my opinion, I'd say I enjoyed the 2nd and 3rd the most. Overall, the Spirit Warrior trilogy is some good 80's fun, but don't expect to be uncovering a diamond among these.
P.S. I also thought I'd mention the other film of this franchise "Spirit Warrior - Peacock King". It's worse than any of these three short ovas. Peacock King is basically an extended cliche world-dominating villain story with a lackluster ending attempting to make these dull characters part of an epic story-line. I'd skip that one and just watch these, but feel free to satisfy your curiosity. It does, at the least, have two great end-credits songs I ripped to my music library.
This one is not very well known for today´s animefan´s , its more familliar with selective underground otaku´s but ok i quite like this one.Animation is not too special but hey it was 1988 so u can look past that,I haven´t seen all the ova´s yet sadly. Storywise its really intense, and scary moments at parts weras A BLOODY LOT of occult talking come to pass, its not an too over the top story. Charac. are somewhat interesting if u haven´t watch all the ova´s yet but they can fight like hell and are not held back too much! resolution can be gritty and crumbly
at some moments, but don´t mind it if ure used to videotape reso. dvd´s ! or just unremastered dvd´s