The Golden Wings movie is the first of the crop of movies from the series that I have seen, and to be honest, it probably shouldn’t have been made in the first place. The story takes in Reinhard, Kircheis and Annerose’s first meetings, some childhood antics and early military career landmarks. Finally it ends on Iserlohn, or something resembling it.
The movie begins with a scene where Reinhard and Annerose witness their mother get killed by a runaway car. After a brief narration about the what had transpired in the war to date, the scene turns to Kircheis’s childhood home where new neighbors have moved in. Captivated by Annerose in the window, Kircheis attempts to jump a hedge before Reinhard runs out to greet him. They greet each other where Reinhard says he will only call him Kircheis, who appears quite nervous.
A few scenes then play out of running through fields and various innocent incidents before the day Annerose is taken away by the Kaiser’s men. Reinhard protests furiously over it, but his father drowns himself in alcohol with the payment he received from the Kaiser out in the open.
The next scene is the introduction to the military, where Reinhard suddenly showed up one day in uniform and told Kircheis what he did. Then at the academy, the two of them get into a fight with the other cadets.
Some time passes before they take a visit to see Annerose, who worries about what will happen to them on the frontlines. Then later Reinhard speaks to Kircheis about how the Empire is corrupt under a statue of Rudolf before vowing to do what he did.
Several years then pass, and Reinhard is now at the rank of Major, with Kircheis one rank lower, on board Iserlohn at age 16. The men serving under him predictably scoff at their youth. Kircheis hears some of the disgust from a group of men but says they won’t be saying anything bad when Reinhard proves his abilities. They challenge him to a fight which Kircheis seemingly wins with a single blow.
Meanwhile on the Alliance side of things, Yang announces the plans for the 5th attempt to take Iserlohn from the Empire. Later, he talks to Attenborough about how he hates war and that the military needs to think differently when it comes to planning.
Back on Iserlohn, Lennenkampt is asked by Klembacher (the name was translated so badly I guessed) to talk to Reinhard and Kircheis about some details in an investigation requested by a member of the court. He agrees since Reinhard’s promotion seemed suspicious to even him. In the meantime, Reinhard and Kircheis were busy getting into a fight over Annerose’s honor.
Reinhard is then interrogated about Helder’s death by Klembacher, but he gives away nothing. Later, Kircheis is asked the same thing and he tells Klembacher that he only answers to Reinhard. Just as he was about to be taken into custody, the Alliance began their attack and Reinhard grabbed Kircheis away.
Reinhard’s ship prepared to sortie, but Klembacher was there to monitor him under Lennenkampt’s orders. The fighting began outside, and Reinhard retorted to Klembacher’s demands to destroy an Alliance ship by pointing out his lack of actual combat experience. As Klembacher prepared to shoot Reinhard, Kircheis took aim to stop him.
The chaos of close combat with the Imperial ships meant that the Alliance ships were safe from Iserlohn’s Thor’s Hammer. However, Yang observed that it didn’t mean they wouldn’t be fired on at some point. The battle between fighters was being dominated by the Alliance. The next phase of the battle began as the Alliance sent in unmanned ships to crash into Iserlohn. Panic ensued on the fortress, but in the midst of it all, Reinhard’s ship was still able to hold its own.
After returning to Iserlohn, Reinhard and Kircheis end up separated and the latter knows something is up. He fights off two guards and runs to where he believes Reinhard is. The concern was valid is Reinhard is caught in a trap by Klembacher. Reinhard ends up surrounded by guards with their weapons trained as the Thor’s Hammer is about to be fired. Reinhard then switches one of their monitors to a view of the weapon being fired, which blinds all of them.
Kircheis arrives and shoots the other guards. Reinhard then runs after Klembacher, but one of the guards trips him and Reinhard falls into a pit. Kircheis grabs him at the edge, though Klembacher had returned to finish his job. He kicks Kircheis repeatedly, but he won’t let go. When Reinhard tells Klembacher who his real target is, Kircheis reminds him about Annerose. Klembacher kicks Kircheis one last time and he lets go of Reinhard, who is able to grab onto a cable on the way down.
Kircheis then fights off Klembacher, which buys enough time for Reinhard to climb up. Reinhard then grabs a cable which he uses to trip Klembacher and tie around his neck in the process. Klembacher’s momentum takes him into the pit and is hung on the cable once it tightened.
With the battle over, Sitolet reflects on another failed attempt to take Iserlohn and hands responsibility for it over to Yang. Kircheis recovers from the beating he took in the fight and after reminiscing over their childhood with Reinhard, they vow to return to the days when they and Annerose were free.
Thoughts: I actually watched this with a group of people over Skype. That’s Scamp, kadian1364, Caraniel and Roghek for the official record. I don’t think the fact that it was at a time where we usually watch terrible anime will affect my interpretation of it. Frankly, it sucked a lot. It took the canon of the series and decided to take a piss on it. I honestly don’t even know what they were going for here as it doesn’t seem like the type of thing to appeal to an audience apart from those absolutely desperate for some BL involving Reinhard and Kircheis. And the character designs, my goodness what were they thinking with fakes Yang and Attenborough. At the very least, I know nothing could possibly be worse than this with the title of Legend of the Galactic Heroes. Now I can go back to the modern classic (by comparison) story of The Duelist.