Wings of Honneamise

Royal Space Force: Wings of Honneamise
Ouritsu Uchuugun: Oneamise no Tsubasa
Also Known As: Wings of Honneamise, Wings, WoH
Genre: Drama
Format: 1 Movie
Allegiance: Gainax
Director: Yamaga Hiroyuki
Vintage: 1987
Intelligence Agency Report by: Dave K
Shirotsugh Lhadatt wanted to be a pilot but he couldn’t join the navy, so he settled for the Royal Space Force. The Space Force’s goal: to put the first man in space. However, the project is plagued with troubles, but after a chance encounter with a unique woman, Shiro is spurred to volunteer to be the first man in space.

Field Agent Report by: Dave K
Overall 9.25

If there’s one thing to be learned from Wings of Honneamise, it’s that a massive budget never hurt a movie; albeit not necessarily guaranteeing instant success either. However, in 1987, a rather unknown company named Gainax spent the unprecedented amount of 8 billion yen; and it shows. Wings is one of the best looking movies out there, although you will want to avoid the Manga R1 DVD because it manages to ruin it.

The story of Wings of Honneamise is somewhat similar to that of the Soviet Space Program and Yuri Gagarin. However, the actions of Shiro and the rest of the characters are obviously not the same as those of the Soviet cosmonauts and scientists. There are two plots running concurrently, one about Shiro and the development of the Space Rocket and one about the relationship between Shiro and Lequinni. The relationship between Shiro and Lequinni is a rather interesting one which is all laid out quite well and understandable, although the execution could have been done better. The characters in Wings are quite well developed, especially Shiro, who goes through more character development in one movie then some characters go through in an entire TV series. The only problem with this development is that it slows down the pacing of the movie at times, making it drag on. The side characters for the most part receive little development but they are also not present enough for you to get any kind of attachment to them.

Visually, Wings of Honneamise is perhaps one of the best done films you will ever see. With an 8 billion yen budget it should be right? Also keep in mind that amongst the animation directors is the enigmatic Anno Hideaki, who has most people know went on to create some of the great anime of the 90’s. Wings of Honneamise also has an excellent soundtrack andseiyuu cast. The seiyuu do an excellent job conveying the emotions of the characters in their voices and the soundtrack is excellent for setting the mood for the scenes. The only real problems are some scenes where it is dead silent, where some background music would help keep the attention of the viewer.

To sum up Wings of Honneamise in one word: “masterpiece.” Everything about this movie is done right although definitely not perfectly. However, this movie was the launching pad for many notable names to the anime field such as Anno, director Yamaga Hiroyuki and musical director Sakamoto Ryuichi; not to mention Gainax itself. Combined what I’ve said with Best Picture at the 1987 Japan Anime Awards, 1987 Seiun Awards and the 1987 Animage Awards, and you know that you’ve got an excellent film.