The plot is basically; "Rei Ayanami wants to have a dinner with her friends. Can she pull it off?"
Or at least that's what I would've liked. Anyway. MARI! Oh my god. A pilot that doesn't seem to be plagued with horrible personality problems, enjoys her job, and is actually freakin' good at it. It's a shame she wasn't around more to show the others what real pilots can do. That being said, there was nothing wrong with her role in regards to the other pilots. I thoroughly enjoyed her presence. The only thing that could possibly make her better is if she was given an english accent in the dub.
Other highlights for me included;
-Yeah. Rei wants to have dinner with her friends. Tehe. And,
-That sequence where Gendou was reminded of Yui when Rei asked him.
-Every fight scene,
-Especially that first one when Mt. Fuji was briefly in the background. w00t Japan.
-The new angels, like the first one, were cool.
-Like the track used when they were showing those few shots of 'normal life' in Tokyo-3.
-The scene where the Dummy Plug system kills Unit-03. I didn't think it would be pulled off with that music over the top of it, but I was wrong. It was very moving, whilst still being disturbing, like the original.
-The fact that the climax of the story was basically Shinji 'saving' Rei like that. Awesome.
-Oh, and the bit where they went to the artificial ocean.
So yeah. Loved it! And I'm looking forward to being able to see it several more times with other people.