I've just got through watching the first 36 episodes of the TV series of Fist Of The North Star on DVD and until a couple of days ago i thought the TV series came after the movie. The movie comes after the TV series. I have to admit that even though the series has more info and detail about the fighting styles etc i think that the movie is slightly better. It has better animation, better voice acting (in English) and is less repetitive. I watched the movie just over ten years ago and was quite literally blown away by it. It has action, adventure, comedy, gore, thrills, spills and for those people disgusted by the sex scenes in Urotsukidoji you'll be happy to know that FOTNS is sex free.
FOTNS is obviously to some extent based on Mad Max but a heck of a lot better. Only thing that bugs me (just like the series) is that the gore scenes are usually blurred or we see peoples shadows exploding. Kind of annoying. Also there seems that there are a few gaps in it which makes me wonder if there has been a scene or two edited out or cut down (atleast in the UK version).
I'll quickly give a brief summary of the story. It's about a guy called Ken who must get his girlfriend back from his former best friend Shin who beat up Ken, kidnapped his girlfriend and left him for dead. Ken walks through the barren wasteland (it's set after a nuclear war) and kills bad guys with his style of fighting. If he punches anybody they explode shortly after. In the meantime his eldest brother Raoh has amassed an army and is trying to conquer the world. There are also a couple of sub plots. One has this guy called Rei (or Ray?) looking for his sister and is also looking for the guy responsible for kidnapping her.
All this leads to an explosive finale. Fist Of The North Star along with Urotsukidoji is my favourite Japanese anime movie of all time. A definite must see but avoid the American live action film. That sucked the big one for sure. This great anime gets a perfect 10/10 from me.