The New York Times says it "has a plot that frolics in the no-man's land between fiendish complexity and utter incomprehensibility." Variety says,
Hard-to-follow storyline (which is about 15 minutes longer than the 1988 version) shares a bit too much information about the politics of Olympus to maintain interest for all but die-hard fans. Newbie viewers will be left twiddling their thumbs while waiting for Deunen's next bout of butt-kicking action sequences.Moria calls it
a dazzling and truly remarkable giant mecha film. Indeed the success of Appleseed 2004 appears to have set a new benchmark for modern anime action and spectacle.