Straight Jacket was actually a decent stand-alone film. I often find that OVA films feel rather incomplete, like the writrers eventually hope to extend their story into the typical twelve to twenty-four episode anime adaptations. Straight Jacket managed to imply that a more complex story can be written in the future, but without making the actual film feel incomplete.
Steinberg, a rogue Sorcerist.
In the Straight Jacket timeline the existence of magic and sorcery was scientifically proven in 1899. With its empiricism no longer at stake sorcery was soon studied and mastered, finding uses in everyday technology. The world of Straight Jacket has an aesthetic similar to the Namco Tales series of video games, where fantasy armor and "magitechnology" come together and synthesize a neo-steampunk universe. Straight Jacket's magic users, referred to as Sorcerists, must use massive metal suits to keep their intense power use from changing them into hideous creatures (Demons). The Sorcery Management Bureau provides magic users with these suits, ensuring that magic use is safe and within legal parameters.
Leiot Steinberg, the film's protagonist, is hired by Sorcery Bureau officer Simmons to eliminate a Demon that emerges in a hospital. Oddman, a terrorist organization, can somehow induce transformation in magic users and make them Demons at will. The Bureau uses its "straight jacket" sorcerists to take them down. The film doesn't do a good job of explaining what Oddman wants but I can appreciate the attempt at an expansive world beyond the film's narrative scope; it keeps the story from seeming too insular and nonsensical.
Steinberg, his assistant Kapel and officer Simmons.
I actually don't have too many complaints about this film. It's nothing spectacular but not incredibly flawed either. Having Crispin Freeman voice Steinberg's rival, Isaac Hammond, is a treat for those who enjoy English dubs. The animation was handled by Feel, a studio that I had not heard of previously because they seem to handle in-between animation for other studios. Straight Jacket wasn't visually striking, and the Demon designs were rather generic; for some reason many anime shows treat monsters like mindless freaks that babble incoherently, with apparent vestiges of their now useless human features. It would be nice for a show to break the monster mold.
As always, I encourage readers to watch what I review. This one's on Netflix for the time being, check it out while it lasts.