In 2010, humanity is at war with a race of giant humanoids known as the Zentradi. Aboard a Zentradi battleship, Britai Kridanik and his advisor Exsedol Folmo examine pieces of human technology. Exsedol reports that the technology isn’t Meltrandi and that due to strange broadcasts their soldiers were unable to fight. Elsewhere, the Macross sits in orbit of Saturn and launches its Valkyrie forces. The Skull Squadron launches, consisting of team leader Roy Focker and rookie pilots Hikaru Ichijyo, Maximilian Jenius and Hayao Kakizaki. In Macross City, Lynn Minmay holds her first concert and finishes up the song “My Boyfriend is a Pilot.” After the song, she thanks her fans for coming to the concert. She says that it’s been a long and difficult journey since the Macross left Earth, but she wants everyone to enjoy themselves and begins singing “Shao Pai Lon.” In space, the Valkyrie teams make contact with Zentradi Regult battle pods and fire missiles. Hikaru fires missiles and destroys two Regults, but he is overtaken by three others. Max destroys two of them with missiles and transforms to Battroid mode to rip a Zentradi pilot out of the third Regult and kill him. Nearby, Roy destroys several Regults with his gunpod. A Zentradi battleship closes in on the Macross, and Hikaru realizes that the Regults were decoys. Minmay’s singing is interrupted by a transformation alert. The Zentradi ships fire at the Macross and blast a hole in the ship’s hull, allowing several Nousjadeul-Gers to enter. A Nousjadeul-Ger targets the bridge, but Hikaru destroys it before it can fire. Major Misa Hayase scolds Hikaru for not sticking to his formation. Hikaru explains that he couldn’t just let the enemy attack, and she tells him that insubordinate pilots will be placed in the brig. Hikaru then says he’s going to check out the situation in the ship and takes off. The Nousjadeul-Gers enter Macross City and one of them crashes into the concert hall and kills several spectators. Minmay runs out of the concert hall with her cousin Lynn Kaifun, and the Zentradi pilots are shocked to see Zentrans and Meltrans together. Minmay trips while running, and a transformation barrier suddenly rises and separates her from Kaifun. A Nousjadeul-Ger approaches Minmay, but Hikaru flies in and fires at it. He then falls back and destroys the Nousjadeul-Ger when it gives chase. The Macross begins its transformation sequence, and at the same time the gravity controls fail inside Macross City. As Minmay falls, Hikaru chases and safely grabs hold of her before his Valkyrie crashes into closed off area. The Macross fires its main gun to destroy the Zentradi ship and chase off the attacking mecha.
Hikaru turns on a flashlight and searches the darkened area. Minmay wakes up and asks Hikaru who he is. She asks him where they are, but Hikaru interrupts and asks for her autograph. After Minmay signs her autograph for Hikaru, he explains that they’re in the engine block. She asks if they can cut the door open, but he tells her that it’s made of reinforced hyper carbon. There’s two much interference for his personal radio, and unfortunately the Valkyrie’s radio is ruined. Minmay doesn’t mind being trapped for a while because it means she can finally take a rest from her busy schedule. As the Macross takes off from Saturn’s surface, the gravity fails in the engine block as well. Hikaru accidentally grabs Minmay’s breasts while trying to push her away from him in zero gravity. Afterwards, Hikaru finds food and creates a makeshift shower for Minmay. On the other side of Saturn, Britai and Exsedol examine the video footage from inside the Macross. Exsedol mentions that old Zentradi texts have a warning to stay away from miclone Meltrans and Zentrans. Several Zentradi soldiers nervously examine a Minmay doll and are confused by the music they hear. Roy meets with Max and Kakizaki and tells them to split up and continue the search for Hikaru. He then goes over to where Misa is having a drink with fellow bridge operator Claudia LaSalle. Misa thinks that Hikaru probably deserted because it’s been three days. Claudia tells Misa that she’s too critical of people, and Misa says that’s why nobody wants to marry her. Minmay tells Hikaru about how she left home because her parents didn’t approve of her becoming a singer. She says that she hopes they’re okay because they’re on Earth. She asks Hikaru what happened to Earth, and he says it probably suffered heavy bombardment from the Zentradi. Hikaru asks Minmay about her TV show and her rumored boyfriend. He says their love scene looked very real, and Minmay laughingly explains that it’s just acting. She then demonstrates by telling Hikaru that she loves him and kisses him. The door suddenly opens and restores gravity, and photographers take pictures of Hikaru and Minmay kissing as they descend. Misa informs Hikaru that he’s been pardoned because he rescued Minmay, but she warns him not to disobey orders again. After she leaves, Roy, Max and Kakizaki come in and ask Hikaru what he did with Minmay, but he insists that he did nothing. In a café, bridge operators Shammy Milliome, Vanessa Laird and Kim Kabirov gossip about Minmay’s alleged affair with Hikaru.
Minmay watches a news discussion about her secret getaway with Hikaru and turns off the TV. Hikaru delivers a flight report to Roy in a bar where he is having a drink with Claudia and Misa. Clearly drunk Roy tells Misa that she needs to act more womanly, but she says that she can’t just change her personality so easily. Roy then tells Hikaru that he has to be aggressive with women and take what he wants. Roy begins to make out with Claudia, and Hikaru receives a phone call. He says he has a family emergency and leaves to meet with Minmay in the park. He takes her out for a night on the town, and the two go to a holographic gallery where they sample all sorts of different clothes. Afterwards, they take a break next to a large observation window and Minmay says that she hates her lifestyle. Hikaru tells Minmay she should stick to her dream, and Minmay looks at Saturn and says she wants to go there. Hikaru takes Minmay out into space with a trainer Super Ostrich Valkyrie and flies through the rings of Saturn. Zentradi commander Golg Boddole Zer orders Britai to capture some miclone specimens for him. Britai is then informed that a Meltrandi ship is approaching, so he orders his soldiers to capture the miclones before the Meltrandi do. As Hikaru flies through the rings, Minmay sings “Sunset Beach.” Their trip is interrupted when Misa and Kaifun approach in a Rabbit shuttle and demand that Hikaru return. Kaifun says that if the media finds out about this it will ruin Minmay’s career. Suddenly, a squadron of Nousjadeul-Gers attacks. Hikaru tries to attack the Zentradi and realizes too late that his trainer Valkyrie has no ammo. As the Nousjadeul-Ger approaches, Roy arrives in time to destroy it and save Hikaru. Roy begins to fight off the Nousjadeul-Gers by himself, but three of them manage to grab onto Hikaru’s Super Ostrich Valkyrie and take it away. Two more grab onto Misa’s Rabbit shuttle and take it as well. A ship rises out of the rings, and Roy is captured after successfully penetrating it. The prisoners are taken to meet with Britai and Exsedol. Britai asks them why they became miclones and don’t fight each other. Misa explains that they are born this way, but Britai doesn’t understand. Roy says that men and women cooperate to create a baby and do things like kissing. Britai demands a demonstration of a kiss, and when Roy hesitates, Britai grabs Minmay and threatens to crush her. Kaifun volunteers to do it and kisses Minmay. Britai and Exsedol react with horror to the kiss.
Minmay and Kaifun are separated from Hikaru when several Meltrandi Queadluun-Raus invade the ship. Ace pilot Milia Fallyna personally destroys several Nousjadeul-Gers before escaping. Roy, Hikaru and Misa return to the Valkyries, and Hikaru kisses Misa to distract the Zentradi. A Zentradi soldier attacks Roy and crushes his Valkyrie‘s torso. Roy kills the soldier with his gunpod and asks Hikaru to tell Claudia goodbye just before his Valkyrie explodes. Hikaru uses a tracer signal to search for Minmay and rips into the room where Minmay and Kaifun are being held. As the ship begins to fold, a stray missile hits the ship and blows Hikaru’s Valkyrie into space. Hikaru’s Super Ostrich Valkyrie de-folds on a strange post-apocalyptic planet. Misa asks him to fly to the ocean on the horizon, but he asks her what the point of that is because they’ll never see Minmay again. Misa takes over the controls and tries to fly the Valkyrie herself, but it goes out of control and crashes on the sand along the shore. Misa is shocked when she sees the ruined carrier Prometheus and realizes that the desolate planet is Earth. They explore the inside of the ship and find a lot of corpses and some rotted food. Britai and Exsedol report to Boddole Zer, and he explains that the humans are Protoculture. He says that Protoculture is the creative activity not associated with fighting, and he says that the Zentradi have been programmed to avoid it. He shows them a memory plate with some music that is a remnant of the Protoculture. Hikaru and Misa spend a week flying to Tokyo and to the Alaska base, but all are totally destroyed. Hikaru asks Misa where they should go next and lists several cities, but she asks him to stop. Later, Hikaru cooks a mutant fish for Misa, but she refuses to eat it. He tells her to cheer up because the Macross will arrive soon, but Misa thinks that even if it does arrive it won’t make a difference. She tells Hikaru that he’s tough and she knows that he has no family. She says she’s always thought of herself as a soldier and never know Earth could be defeated. In the morning, they fly across the ocean and spot a massive floating platform. Inside the ruined building they find a computer that Misa uses to attempt to contact the Macross. Hikaru activates another computer, which Misa determines is part of a colonization ship involved in genetic engineering. According to the data, the Protoculture was an interstellar civilization that created the Zentradi and Meltrandi. After the two sides began fighting, the Protoculture came to Earth and created the ancestors of humanity so that men and women could live together in peace. When the Zentradi came to Earth, the platform rose from the sea believing that they were the Protoculture. Now, the computer uses its last power to raise the entire city of Altira.
Hikaru and Misa explore the ruined Altira and find some houses. Hikaru wants to continue searching, but Misa feels like staying in one of the houses. She examines the house and finds broken tableware in the sink. When Hikaru returns he finds that Misa has set the table with all the things she found in the sink. They sit down for a moment, but Misa breaks down and says she wants to go back home to the Macross where everyone is. Hikaru holds on to Misa’s hand and gives her a long kiss. Later, they go outside to investigate a loud sound coming from the sky. They are both surprised to see the Macross floating over the Protoculture city. Hikaru and Misa meet with Captain Bruno Global to give their report. Global asks what the condition is on Earth, and Misa explains that in a month of searching they couldn’t find any survivors. Global dismisses them and tells them to get some rest. Claudia asks Hikaru if Roy died fighting for a good cause, and Hikaru says he did. Misa and Hikaru return to Macross City and watch a giant screen displaying a Minmay video. Hikaru says that although it was only a month ago that he took Minmay into space, it feels like so much longer than that. Misa thinks that by hearing Minmay’s music it’s almost as if she’s alive. A Meltrandi gunboat de-folds in Earth orbit, and Meltrandi commander Laplamiz orders Milia to capture the Protoculture ruins before the Zentradi do. Hikaru’s Skull Squad launches when the Meltrandi ship enters the atmosphere. He warns them not to underestimate the Meltrandi, and Max asks him if he’s scared. Kakizaki thinks it might be because Hikaru is in love, and his Valkyrie suddenly explodes from a Meltrandi attack. Hikaru and Max separate to take on the Queadluun-Raus, and Max focuses on attacking Milia. He dodges all of her missile attacks and fires his gunpod at her. He then flies through Altira to avoid her attacks. Max damages her mecha and chases her as she flies back to the Meltrandi ship. He follows her inside where she is hiding. Milia attacks Max from behind, but he evades and fires back. Max shoots out the lights in the corridor’s narrow ceiling, and the two fight in the dark. The ship then fires its main gun at the Macross, destroying the main guns and causing the ship to crash into Altira. Suddenly, everyone on both sides hears Minmay’s voice humming a song. Max looks at injured Milia and is amazed by how beautiful she is. The Zentradi Gol Boddole Zer flagship and its fleet appears next to the Macross, and the Meltrandi ship folds away. Misa informs Global that the Zentradi are calling them because they want to negotiate peace.
Global holds a press conference and explains that the data they’ve found indicates that humans, Zentradi and Meltrandi all have the same genetic makeup and were created by the Protoculture. He then narrates a video showing how the Zentradi can use genetic engineering technology to turn themselves into miclones. He then introduces micloned Zentradi soldiers Loli Dosel, Warera Nantes and Conda Bromco. He then finalizes the peace agreement between the Macross and Boddole Zer’s fleet. Afterwards, Minmay comes on stage and talks about how the Zentradi possessed a memory plate fragment from the Protoculture that contains a song. Because the lyrics were lost, writers are coming up with new lyrics. Minmay wants the song to be played throughout the universe for the sake of peace. Britai watches the press conference and jokes with Exsedol that he’d like to become a miclone too. Misa and Hikaru are brought on stage, and Minmay runs over to Hikaru and hugs him in front of Misa. Later, Misa examines the memory plate she found in the city and starts to translate the song. Hikaru begins to remove a Minmay poster from his wall when Minmay knocks on his door. As he fills the coffee pot, Minmay hugs him from behind and tells him she loves him. Misa then walks in and asks what’s going on. She says she translated the song and wanted to show it first to Hikaru. He says that it’s all a misunderstanding, and Minmay says she can’t take it and runs off. Misa tells Hikaru to chase Minmay and not to bother sympathizing for her. Hikaru tells her that she’s completely wrong. He says that after wandering the Earth and hearing Minmay’s voice again that he knew Misa was the one he wanted to be with. Misa begins to cry and hugs Hikaru just as a battle alert is sounded. In the hangar, Valkyries are prepped for battle and equipped with FAST packs. In space, Boddole Zer’s fleet gathers in orbit around Earth. Laplamiz’s mothership and fleet de-fold in front of Boddole Zer’s fleet. Because the Zentradi no longer have Minmay and the song isn’t finished, Boddole Zer orders the destruction of the Macross as well as the Meltrandi. Global orders the Macross to take off, and the ship launches just before a Zentradi barrage destroys Altira. Hikaru runs through the empty Macross City to find Minmay and give her the song.
The Macross flies into space and is damaged by Zentradi fire. Hikaru continues to search the city and finally finds Minmay in the observation lounge. He gives Minmay the song and asks her to sing it, but she refuses to sing a song another woman found. Boddole Zer attacks Laplamiz’s flagship and destroys thousands of his own ships because they were in the line of fire of his flagship’s cannon. Minmay tells Hikaru that even if she sings that song there’s no way they can win. She wants to be together with him when they die, and he says he wants her to do it for everyone on the Macross. Minmay says she wishes everyone else were dead so they could be alone together, and Hikaru slaps her. He asks her if she can still sing, and after a moment she apologizes and says she doesn’t know what got into her. Several moments later, Minmay comes to the bridge and begins to sing “Do You Remember Love?” Hikaru launches in the Strike Valkyrie and is joined in battle by Milia and Zentradi-sized Max in their Queadluun-Raus. A Zentradi battleship closes in on the Macross, but Britai destroys it and tells Global that he will protect the Macross. Britai addresses the Zentradi and Meltrandi fleet and tells them they have to destroy Boddole Zer if they want to preserve culture. The combined Macross and Zentradi-Meltrandi fleet turns its attention to Boddole Zer and attacks his flagship. Britai’s ship crashes on the surface of the flagship, but he blasts a hole in the hull big enough for the Macross to enter. The Macross smashes through the ship until it reaches the core. Hikaru flies ahead by himself to the chamber where Boddole Zer is. He fires all his weapons and kills Boddole Zer, who is bio-organically linked to the flagship. The flagship begins to die away and explodes. Exsedol tells Britai that the hardest part is yet to come because there are thousands of other Zentradi and Meltrandi fleets, but Britai says that with the power of culture they can make incredible changes. Claudia asks Misa what the song really was, and Misa tells her it was just a pop song that was popular in the ancient Protoculture city. Two years later, Minmay holds a concert in the newly rebuilt Macross City on Earth and sings the song “Angel’s Colors.”
Released in 1984, this movie version of Macross features stunning animation that still holds up very well even after two decades. Although you can watch this movie without prior knowledge of the TV series, it really is meant for fans who have seen the series already. Because this movie mainly focuses on Hikaru, Misa and Minmay, many other characters like Max, Milia and Roy are sort of in the background and don’t do much. There are also a few plot holes here. The movie opens with the Macross already at Saturn, and no explanation is given about what they’re doing there and who the Zentradi are. Also, when Hikaru and Misa are caught in the fold operation of Britai’s ship, why do they end up on Earth instead of where Britai went? Despite these minor flaws, there’s a lot to like here. The classic love triangle plays out a bit differently. Minmay has been aged up a bit to provide more mature, sexy competition for Misa. Also, Hikaru is much more decisive here and doesn’t waffle back and forth between Misa and Minmay like he does in the TV series. There’s also some great mecha combat here, especially the thrilling fight between Max and Milia. The “Perfect Edition” released in 1992 features footage from Minmay’s concert in Flashback 2012, but it should be noted that not all of the Flashback 2012 appears in this new ending. It would’ve been nice to see Hikaru, Misa and the Megaroad-01, but the ending is satisfying as it is. Don’t miss out on this movie.
Original Review: May 1, 2000