While most of the characters show personality and growth as people throughout the series, the main character (Shinji) continues his pervasive whining and crying up to the bitter end while showing no development other than to be very, very, annoying to the point where I don't care about his mental state or what he feels, I just want him to shut up, stop whining/crying (whatever he's doing during that particular episode/scene), or do *anything* but complain and mope.
The antithesis of the "plot" - and I use that word very loosely - is that Shinji not only can't recognize that the people in his life care for him, but he rejects them constantly while at the same time screaming that no one cares for him. Tragic? I suppose, but the fact that nothing about him - his personality, his thought process, etc... - changes from episode one to the final scene in this movie really is really telling. So in the end when he has to choose between saving the world and destroying it, he opts for the latter due to the fact that he can't cope with human emotions. What really dropped the enjoyment factor of this movie is that throughout the whole of it Shinji, save the final few scenes, was either crying, screaming, whining, or acting totally comatose while destruction was raining down around him and the rest of the characters (whom were all subsequently killed) were trying to do something or fighting through their issues and problems and growing/ evolving as people.
At the end there's some answers... more if you look at the imagery, remember back to some instances in the series, and think about the theology and the symbolism, but when it's all said and done, the movie did little more then to kill off all of the characters that actually did grow and evolve as people during the series and reveal Shinji as an emotionally stunted and perverted character that was left to determine the fate of the entire race.
End of Evangelion is what Evangelion longed to be, but couldn't due to budget, time, and tv-network constraints. It cannot be called an action-packed thrillride, nor a touching drama, nor even a linear story. It is Hideaki Anno (director/creator), pure and simple. Or rather, pure and complex. Surreal images coupled with religious symbolism set the background for the interaction of deep, multi-dimensional characters (perhaps the term "entities" is more suitable) that one feels just can't be made up. The subject matter? None other than Anno himself: very many confusing, sometimes contradicting, ideas and feelings meticulously juxtaposed and laid out for interpretation. There is never any guarantee that a particular work of art will appeal to a particular person, but chances are that if you identify on an emotional level with the series (especially Shinji), you'll get blown away by The End of Evangelion.
As for other aspects, i thoroughly enjoyed the soundtrack (9/10). I'm told the animation is good (to me it looks better than the series, not better than Cowboy Bebop). The DVD special features are nothing spectacular. The subtitles are excellent, a vital difference from fansubs, pirated copies, and such (considering the sensitivity of the dialogue).
You'll need to watch it multiple times to understand it-and as anyone who's watched it will tell you, that's not a condescending statement; it is astoundingly convoluted. Infamous scenes such as Shinji by Asuka's hospital bed, the Misato-Shinji confrontation by the lift and the bloody siege of NERV are monuments to the film's controversy and tracks like 'Komm Suesser Todd' and 'Honey Moon with Anxiety' heighten them further.
Beautiful, disconcerting and confusing, this is the true ending. If you've seen all of the tv series then you owe it to yourself to watch this for real closure. It may take some time to accept it, but, ultimately, you won't be disappointed.
Warning spoilers!!!! Only read IF YOU SAW the end and don't understand!!!! Read more