The Blue Max (1966) Script

Up! Up! Push!

Come on! Push!

Move out of the way! Clear the way!

Move! Move!

That was a full bottle, Herr Leutnant.


You've just met Willi von Klugermann! Yes!

I see you've heard of him! Oh! Yes, I have!

Look at him! You must be the new...

He's tearing the wings off that plane! Let him celebrate, Ziegel!

He shoots them down! Your job is to keep him up there!

You must be the new replacement... Stachel!

Bruno Stachel, Herr Oberleutnant.

Are you the adjutant? I fly a desk now!

Anti-aircraft fire!

Still, it could've got me higher up, couldn't it?


Wait here! I'll tell the C! O! You've arrived!

And if I were you, I'd button up that jacket!

Ziegel! How soon can you have us ready again?

Depends on how many of the others have been hit, Herr Hauptmann.

I wasn't the only one!

I can't keep these barges flying forever! I'm a mechanic, not a magician!

No, you are a magician, whether you like it or not!

Only 11 back, Herr Hauptmann. Yes! Mueller went down!

He didn't last long!

Fabian, how did we come to lose him?

I gave him the usual instructions!

But he wouldn't stay with me!

Too, uh! Too keen!

By the way, Scholte's replacement's here!

Leutnant Bruno Stachel reporting from 104 Training School.

Your commanding officer... Hauptmann Heidemann.

Ah, yes! Stachel! Come inside!

Herr Hauptmann.

Stachel! Yes, sir!

Two years in the infantry!

Any rank? Corporal, Herr Hauptmann.

What made you transfer to the Air Corps?

To fly, Herr Hauptmann.

Are you a good flyer?

I am! Comfortable in the air!

"Comfortable!" Are you?

Interesting! Willi!


Very pretty flying!

I wish you would stop it! You'll live longer!

Sorry about that!

I see you are from Wiesbaden!

I've done some hunting around there!

Who are your people? Herr Hauptmann?

I want to know something of your background!

What does your father do?

He works in a small hotel, Herr Hauptmann.

Five bedrooms!

Corporal, see the new officer's bags are taken up to the mess!

Herr Hauptmann. Come into my office, Stachel!

Close the door, please!

I'm sorry if it bothers you about what your father does!

It doesn't bother me, Herr Hauptmann.

Then why are you so touchy about it?

Well, you're an officer now! Your social problems are no concern of ours!

Take a look at the map, Stachel!

Our operating area is between Arras and Saint-Quentin!

The British also operate the area, as you'll find out!

Uh, what did you train on?

The usual machine, Herr Hauptmann... an out-of-date Pfalz!

That's what you'll fly here! But, at flying school, they told us...

"Flying school!"

At flying school, they'll tell you anything!

Up-to-date machines go to experienced pilots!

Those are in short supply!

It's a cruel world, Stachel, huh?

Yes, Herr Hauptmann.

Welcome to the squadron! The truck will take you to the mess with the others!

And, Stachel!

Let's hope you get to like us!

Of course, he could've been lying about the five bedrooms!

His father was probably only a waiter!

Just another snob, in fact.

Willi, there's something I haven't told you!

I have an uncle in the hotel business!

I admit he's a baron and the hotel has 500 bedrooms!

But you do see the position it places me in!

There was a town in Poland And there a girl we found Lovely was she... Want a cigarette?

Thank you! She was the naughtiest maid That ever we beheld But do not kiss me please, she said I never kiss You've got 18, haven't you?

Squadron rule number one, Stachel... gentlemen never parade their military achievements!

She was the loveliest maid that ever we beheld Any rule against saying how long it took you?

I would say that was covered by the same rule!

Wouldn't you?

No, I wouldn't! How many rules are there?

I don't know! None of them have been written down!

She was the haughtiest maid that ever we beheld But do not kiss me please, she said I never kiss She was the haughtiest maid that ever we beheld But do not kiss me please, she said I never kiss


Seems you're next to me in Scholte's old room!

That's, uh, number 11! Scholte?

Oh, your predecessor! He, uh... He didn't last long, unfortunately!

Unhappy young man! Yes! He forgot to keep looking over his shoulder!

It's worth remembering! They come fast, out of the sun!

Thank you!

Willi, what do you think of him?


Gonna have a drink?


Oh! They haven't removed poor Scholte's card!

Very tactless of them!

I just thought you should know we, uh, don't dress for dinner here!

Von Richthofen, I see!

Your hero?

He's done it all!

Two more kills, and you'll have one of those!

Hmm! A pretty medal, the Blue Max!

It's the only one worth having! People respect it!

The medal or the man?

The usual routine, Fabian!

You know what they are like the first time in combat!

Of course! Keep your eye on him!

Here! Isn't it nice to hear the birds again, Herr Hauptmann?

Listen to that!

They won't be here long!

When our offensive starts...

Good luck, Fabian! Herr Hauptmann.

What is it?

Stachel! Fly on Fabian's left!

And a little behind him!

And watch for his signals! Yes, Herr Hauptmann.

And relax! Get the balloon and come straight back!

You'll find balloons burn beautifully!

Switches on!

Is that army observation? Adjutant, Squadron 11 here.

One of our pilots claims an SE5 shot down in sector five!

Yes! Can you confirm, please?

Yes, about, uh, 0700 hours!

Perhaps Fabian made a forced landing! I don't know!

Yes? Sector five, on our side of the line!

You did? Fine!

Go on! Uh...

In midair?

Did yours explode? No!

Yes, we do have a pilot missing!

That will be him, I'm afraid! Ask him!

Thanks! Good-bye!

But... Only Fabian! He never got out!

No SE5! But somebody must have seen my SE5 go down!

Not necessarily!

It often happens!

No confirmation, no claim!

That's a squadron rule! But I saw it! It was a kill!

Then you have the deep satisfaction of knowing you have served the fatherland!

It went down here... our side of the line!

Why couldn't the army look for it?

They have other things to do!

Somebody must have seen it!

Fabian might have seen it!

Corporal Rupp! Herr Leutnant.

We're going to search sector five! Get your motorcycle!

But, Herr Leutnant... Be at the mess in five minutes!

Herr Leutnant.

Back to the mess, Herr Leutnant?

No! I'm going to search that wood over there!

You already have, Herr Leutnant. What?

You searched that wood an hour ago!

Well, we're going to search it again!

What's the matter, Rupp? Too close to the guns for you?

Thank you, Corporal! It's been a pleasure, Herr Leutnant.

You have finished your wild goose chase, I hope!

Yes, Herr Hauptmann. Found nothing, huh?


If every pilot were to go careering around France!

Looking for unconfirmed aircraft!

There'd be no air force left!

And Corporal Rupp has more important things to do!

Do you understand? Yes, Herr Hauptmann.

Unconfirmed by army means unconfirmed, and that's final!

Good night, Stachel!


Come and join us!


I'll get the next one, Willi!

Brandy, please! Champagne, Herr Leutnant.

Willi got his 20th kill today!

He's being awarded the Blue Max! Uh-huh!

I see you've had a hard day!

No one's ever done that before about an unconfirmed kill!

Quite novel! You must be in a hurry!

To your Blue Max!

Blue Max! Willi!

I don't suppose you've ever had an unconfirmed kill!

Oh, but I have! I've had, uh, three!

Then you've shot down 23!



By the way, Stachel!

There's an impression around that!

You care more about your unconfirmed kill!

Than you do about Fabian's death!

Perhaps it's force of habit!

In the trenches, we couldn't even bury the dead!

There were too many of them!

I've never had the time!

To discuss them over a glass of champagne!

Well, never mind, Stachel!

To your unconfirmed victory!

Next time, you must have witnesses!

Witnesses! Witnesses!

Good evening, gentlemen! Good evening.

Pairings for next week's sorties!

Let's have them, please! I'll fly with Becker!

Heller and Braun! I'll fly with Lindorf!

Von Klinger and I will do the ground strafe!

Good! Who'll fly with Stachel?

I'll fly with Stachel!

He's... He's bringing her in!

This one is dead, Herr Leutnant.

Easy, easy! Bring a stretcher! Quick! Quick!

Get over there! Quickly!

What happened, Stachel?

The observer, he was going to open fire!

Then we are to assume he was either very brave!

Or very foolish!


It's a cruel world, Herr Hauptmann. You said so yourself!


I've read your report, Willi! What really happened?

As I said, Otto, the observer made a move for his gun!

So Stachel shot him down!

You wish to stand by a comrade!

I appreciate that! What I reported is what I saw!

We are German officers! We'll fight this war with chivalry!

You know that as well as I do! Of course!

The observer was blinded! Did you know that?

No! It could have happened when Stachel opened fire over the airfield!

But did it? I don't know!

You know how Stachel behaved when his first claim was disallowed!

If he shot down a helpless enemy in cold blood!

It's something I won't tolerate in my squadron!

All right, I agree! There is some measure of doubt!

But I have no reason to change my report!

All right, Willi!

The incident is closed, officially anyway!

Is everyone here?

All except Leutnant Stachel, Herr Hauptmann.

Someone inform him this is a parade!

He is ordered to attend!

We're about to honor your dead!

So I see!

Well, aren't you coming?

It's an order!


Because our commanding officer has made it one!

He believes in chivalry, Stachel.


To kill a man!

Then make a ritual out of saluting him?

That's hypocrisy!

They kill me!

I don't want anyone to salute!

They probably won't!

All right!

Let's get it over with, shall we?


Thank you!

You know, there's something of the cobra in you!

I'll have to watch you!


Leutnant von Klugermann!

Parade, stand at! Ease!

I assume you've talked to the other pilots about this, Holbach!

Yes, Herr General. I'm making a thorough inquiry into the whole incident!


When the opportunity arises, point the man out to me!

Yes, Herr General.

Ah, Otto!

The squadron's drawn up, Herr General.

We were discussing the pilot who brought this in!

Air headquarters is quite excited about it!

What's the man's name again?

Leutnant Stachel, Herr General. Mm-hmm!

Is he a good flyer?

Yes! Yes, he is!

Glad to hear it! We mustn't keep my nephew waiting any longer!

Not to mention my wife!

Parade, front!

Left... turn!

Sorry to have been so long! Were you bored?

With all these men around?

Look beautiful for them, Kaeti!

Look at Willi!

Doesn't he look splendid?

The Blue Max will go so well with his eyes!

He is rather vain!

He'll probably wear it in bed the first few days!

Oh, how uncomfortable for the girl!

Parade... attention! Excuse me, Herr General.

Yes? The second one on the left!

Front row... that's Stachel!


"To Leutnant Wilhem von Klugermann!

"For bravery of the highest order!

"In action against the enemies of the German Empire...

"and for exceptional services to the fatherland...

"in that he has destroyed single-handed 20 enemy aircraft...

"the order Pour Le Mérite!

"By imperial decree...

Wilhem, Emperor!"

I'm afraid it's rather a small medal, Willi!

But it's the highest Germany can give!

Thank you! Uncle!


This pilot of yours... Stachel!

Humble origin, risen from the ranks, et cetera, et cetera!

Two years' front-line service, hmm?

Yes, that's right!

To deliver the final blow over your own airfield... on the doorstep, so to speak!

It was splendid, wasn't it? "Splendid"?

Otto, if this young man lives long enough!

He could be very useful to our propaganda department!

The common people of our country are war-weary, restive!

They need to be provided with a hero of their own!

Von Richthofen, Willi, are of our class!

That fellow Stachel is common as dirt! He's one of them!

You understand? Yes, I understand!

But I don't agree with killing helpless men!

Otto, this is 1918! Things have changed!

Unrestricted submarine warfare! Bombing of civilians!

Poison gas! Ask your wife... she's a nurse!

Ask Elfi about the mustard gas casualties!

So you approve of this kind of ruthlessness!

We fight to win, Otto! Yes, of course!

Excuse me, Herr General.

Herr General!

May I present Leutnant Stachel!

I saw the plane which you brought in!

Very! Interesting exploit!

It proves that our young men still have vitality!

Courage and the will to win at all costs!

Yes, Herr General. Thank you!

I'm sure we'll hear a lot more of you!

Kaeti, you haven't met our Leutnant Stachel!


May I introduce the Countess von Klugermann!

My aunt! By marriage!

You appear to have caught my uncle's interest!

Interest from high places is always welcome!

May I get you a drink, Countess?

All right! Champagne!


Pink champagne!

Pink champagne? Yes!

Yes, Countess!

May I have two glasses of pink champagne, please?

Well, I say...

My glass, hmm?

That champagne is getting warm, Stachel!

Not yet!

Silence, please! Silence!

Please, silence!


In a few hours!

The horizon will be lit up by the flashes of 7,000 guns!

Our guns!

They will herald the greatest offensive in history!

Our defeat of Russia has released a million men... for the Western Front!

I need hardly tell you!

That if we destroy the British and French armies... before the Americans can intervene effectively!

We shall have won the war!

God be with us! God be with us!

Oh! Willi, darling!


I'm sorry I'm late!

I'm sorry!

Well, I'm not!

If you're looking for your nephew, he's next door!

Yes! I realize that now!

As long as you're here!

Perhaps I can get you that drink!

Yes, do!

I'm afraid I'm out of champagne!

Then whatever you have! Schnapps!

Mmm! Horrible!

But quite stimulating!

So that's you... Cobra!

"Cobra"? Yes! That's what Willi calls you!

Has he been talking about me to you?

I asked!

He says you're quite, uh, deadly!

In sort of a quiet way!

He's a romantic!

And you're not! No!


Tonight is a! Family affair!

Are you shocked? No!

You see, my husband is a very civilized man! Mmm!

And we are great friends!

It must be nice to have an understanding friend!

Oh, yes, it is!

Willi must be getting impatient!

Shall I announce you?

Please do!

Thank you!



Come on, lads! This is it!

Follow me!

Here they come again!

Come on, boys! Come on now!

The oil pressure's still too low!

That's all you'll get out of her!

She wasn't made yesterday!

Oh, is that what it is?

You'll feel better in a few days, Herr Leutnant.

We've taken Bapaume! Bapaume!


It means we're closer to Paris!

Thank you!

Herr Leutnant, I'm here to take you back to the squadron!

In there, Herr Leutnant.

What are we celebrating?

Your survival, of course, and your tenth victory!

You're moving up fast, Stachel!

Too fast?

Does it hurt?


Then I'd better open the bottle!

Tell me, uh... never having suffered it personally... what does it feel like to be! Shot down?

I'd rather you found that out for yourself!


You know, I... I was quite pleased at first... when you were posted missing, I mean!

Thank you!

Oh, it was just that, uh, all of a sudden!

The war seemed a bit more! Peaceful!

And then... this is the odd thing... I had a sense of loss!

I'm touched! No, no! Uh, seriously!

I suppose I've had everything in my life too easy!

I'm inclined to be lazy!

I have to have a challenge! I need someone around me who is, uh!

Hard to beat!

And you fulfill that role!

How's the countess? The countess?

Mmm! Oh!

Your aunt by marriage!

Is she well? I think so!

I should have thought you'd have known!

Oh, yes! She told me about coming into your room that night!

I knew you'd have to bring it up sooner or later!

The countess!

There's a fascinating subject!

I believe you have aspirations in that direction, Stachel!

You should forget them!

I'll try!

But if the impossible happens!

I'll buy you a bottle of champagne!

Will you?

It's vintage 1903!

You'll find it! Hard to get!

1903? I'll remember that!

Thanks for the champagne!

That's the damn fool that almost got me killed today!

I believe he's a friend of mine!

Why don't you take it up with him?

I hope it'll be a longer visit next time!

Yes, of course! Stachel!

May I introduce!

The Baron von Richthofen!

It is an honor, Herr Rittmeister.

And I'm very grateful! Hmm!

1903 again!

You'll never change, Willi!

I'd like to have some of Willi's champagne with you!

But I must get back to my squadron!

I'm glad to see you haven't had to pay!

Too high a price for my life!

I only lost an old Pfalz, Herr Rittmeister.

Perhaps now I'll get a better plane!

Oh, yes, you will!

My squadron is going to be equipped with the new monoplane!

Berlin's been promising so long!

I don't understand, Herr Rittmeister.

The baron wants you to join his squadron, Stachel!

I have no objection!

Well, what do you think?

I am! Very flattered by your offer, Herr Rittmeister.

Thank you!

But I'd prefer to prove myself here!

Oh, I see!

Well, I admire loyalty!

You're lucky to have this fellow, Otto!

Switches on!

Thank you!


Bring me that report from Von Richthofen again!

Yes, Herr General.

You're not shoeing a horse!

Get out!

Herr General.


I want him brought to Berlin immediately!

Yes, Herr General. There is some difficulty?

I don't know what you have in mind!

But with the offensive at its height!

There'd have to be some legitimate excuse!

To order him from the front.

He's wounded, isn't he? Yes, Herr General.

Hmm! A mentionable wound?

In the arm!

Good! The people like soldiers to be shot in the right places!

Order Stachel to Berlin for special hospital treatment!

I want you to ensure that all our newspapers give full prominence!

To this! Gallant episode!

Photographs! Everything!

Yes, Herr General.


I think I can get the field marshal to see things my way!

With luck!


So what you're telling me behind your jargon!

Is that this machine is unstable!

Exactly! Herr Field Marshal!

We require at least three more months to perfect the design!

By then, the war may well be lost!

Well, Franz, what more have you to say to the experts?

With your permission, Herr Field Marshal!

I would like to produce an expert of my own!


We would like the benefit of your experience, Stachel.

You'll have read in this morning's papers about Von Richthofen!

This is the pilot concerned... Leutnant Bruno Stachel!

This way!

The new monoplane!

Is it as fast as we've heard?


What about its maneuverability?

Only one wing... will it take the stress?

It will out-turn any Allied plane present in the air!

It could even turn the tide of the air war!

Then we must have it!

What would your reaction be if I told you that these gentlemen believe!

That there will be risks for you pilots if we hurry it into production now?

Well, we're used to risks, Herr General.

One more wouldn't make any difference!

Hmm! Leutnant Stachel!

Tell me!

Do you think that your opinion would be shared by your comrades?

I am certain of it, Herr Field Marshal!

Let me see it again!


Nurse! Nurse, come quickly.

Come along, Herr Leutnant.

Frau Heidemann, Leutnant Stachel!

Yes! I remember you!

I'm due back in a few minutes! It won't take long!

The jacket, please, Herr Leutnant. And your shirt!

Frau Heidemann! Those flowers, please!

Thank you!

Thank you!

Sit down, Herr Leutnant.

Excuse me, please!

Mm-hmm! Excellent!

I saw how busy you were outside!

Yes! I'm sorry!

Come along, gentlemen.

Along here!

Now, Frau Heidemann, if you please!

It is just this one pose, hmm?

What are you going to put under the picture?

"Squadron commander's wife nurses wounded hero"? Yes!


Oh, very good!

Now move a little closer.

Thank you! Now! Hold still!

The playacting is over? Yes, Herr General.

We have finished!

Elfi, my dear!

How good of you to have found time to come and help us!

It was an order, Herr General, wasn't it?

Of course!

It was a very important piece of playacting!

I see!

Well, Stachel, by morning, you'll be quite famous!

How do you feel about that?

Lucky, Herr General. Hmm.

Tomorrow, you will be making your way back to your squadron!

And tonight, my wife would like you to dine with her!

That's! very kind of her, Herr General.

Not at all! She likes heroes!


You don't convince me for one moment, Colonel!

Herr Leutnant, may I ask you, please, do you envy the birds?

It may surprise you, General, to know!

Is that what makes men want to fly... jealousy of the birds? That I'm a serious student of military strategy!

No, Baroness, I am not really surprised!

Jealousy of the birds! I've never heard it put better!

Herr Leutnant, about the birds.

Good night! Good night!

Good night! A most successful party!

Absolutely wonderful!

Bless you, Kaeti! Good night!


What's that?

It sounds like a drum, Countess!

Good evening! Hmm!

As this is my first opportunity!

Of speaking to you tonight, I'll repeat it!

Good evening!

And good evening to you, too, good and faithful family servant!

Good morning!

That late? I must have fallen asleep during your speech!

Hans, some wine for the musician!


Well, I suppose I might as well say it!

Say what?

You're beautiful!

So are you! Hmm!

And where is Herr General?

Your husband!

Oh, he doesn't worry about me!

He doesn't? Hmm!

Well, he should!

By now, he's with the Countess von Hoehlen... on my right at dinner!

They play war games together!

These games go on until morning?


My husband finds them very absorbing!

It's a very heavy responsibility being a general.

That depends how good you are at tactics!

Herr Leutnant.

Your wine, Herr Leutnant. Hmm!

Thank you, Herr Leutnant.

It has been a long day!

Hans! Yes, Herr Leutnant?

I want you to go to your mistress and tell her!

I think I know what she means!

Now, Herr Leutnant? Now!

Come in.

I knew you would come.

Darling, I am...


Oh, you fool!

There's a heap of letters in your room, Herr Leutnant.

Mmm! From all over Germany!

Any of them perfumed? Yes, Herr Leutnant.

There's one from Stuttgart!

Towards the end, she says... Yes?

Herr Leutnant.

Ah! Hello, Cobra! How was Berlin?

Hectic! Brought you a present, Willi!


Kind of you!

I doubt if our tastes coincide!

Oh, but they do! Glasses?

Thank you!




What year is this?



We've tolerated you here because we've had to!

One of these days, Stachel... or should I call you Bruno?

One of these days, I'm going to shake you up! Considerably!

It will give me pleasure, Willi!

I'll look forward to it!

I wonder if you're as good as you think you are!

In or out of bed!

Well, Otto?

Thousands of trucks carrying troops!

I flew over two miles of them!

And it's continuous, like the anti-aircraft fire!

Uh, the new replacements! They just arrived!

They're only half-trained!

I want every man in the air tomorrow, including replacements!

To sum up, then, our offensive has come to a standstill!

A massive enemy counterattack is developing!

The Americans are pouring men into the battle area!

Our army is hard-pressed!

We are outnumbered in the air... and our observation planes are shot down before they can report.

High command urgently wants information.

Today, I shall lead the squadron!

On a decoy mission to SaintJust to divert British patrols!

Meanwhile, an observation plane from Squadron 35!

Will attempt a photographic reconnaissance of the area around Amiens!

I want two of you to provide close escort.


All right!

Rendezvous at 0800 hours over sector three!

You'll fly the two triplanes. Take care of them.

They are the last ones we are likely to get!


All right, gentlemen!


Did you meet my wife at the hospital?

Yes, Herr Hauptmann. Was she all right?

She is well, Herr Hauptmann.

Thank you! Good luck!

Where's Willi?

He's dead.

He was flying too low.

He hit the trees!

What happened? He hit the trees!

I landed! There wasn't anything I could do!

He was a better man than you!

Well, he's dead!

Is that your test? Yes!

And that was his test too! What do you mean?

Herr Hauptmann!

Air observation report two British planes down in sector nine!

Willi didn't die for nothing!

I'm glad of that, Karl!

We can tell the family!

They'll be proud of him!

What makes you think he shot them down?

You mean they're yours?

Why do you think they're not? Well, are they?

Willi killed himself trying to fly me into the ground and went in instead!

I'm asking you if those two planes are yours or Willi's!

All right, they're mine! They belong to me!


I've just read your armorer's report.

Your guns were jammed! You only fired 40 rounds!

Forty rounds?

Two three-second bursts!

Is your marksmanship that good?


I'm not confirming these two victories, Stachel!

But I will report your astonishing marksmanship to air headquarters!

Firing party, right wheel.

Firing party... halt.

Left turn!

Order arms!

Otto, the general has asked me to tell you he's seen your report to headquarters!

The two victories claimed by Stachel are to be confirmed!

The general feels you are inclined to be, uh!

Prejudiced against this officer!

I hope the owner of this place is as discrete as he looks, darling!

He should be! I paid him enough!

What's the matter? Nothing!

It's that bad, is it?

You'll have to decide which you prefer... this or women!

Why can't I have both?

You're soaked through!

You should take better care of yourself!

Are you interested?


Don't you believe that? Certainly!

But you were interested in Willi too!

Tell me!

How did you feel! Today at the funeral?


You know!

He never did accept me as his equal!

In or out of bed!

You're deliciously crude, darling!

Hmm! You amuse me!


People like you!

Oh, me? The count, Willi!

Amuse or shock?

I said, amuse!

I adore your innocence!

You really believe your betters should behave better, don't you?

Don't patronize me!

Not if it offends you!

Darling? My feelings for you!

Have nothing to do with the death of Willi!

You and I are alike, Bruno!

You're good for me!

Willi was a fool!

He didn't die in battle!

He died trying to prove he could fly better than I can!


We played a game!

In and out of the trees! He lost!

But I was the bigger fool!

I claimed two planes he shot down!

I shouldn't have done that.

I can get 20 victories without anyone's help!

That game, whatever it was, it was about me, wasn't it?

In a way, yes!

I find that exciting!

Would you die for me like Willi did?


Are you sure?

All right! Push!

All right! Straight now!

Come on!

It lasted about ten minutes!

They came in low... Sopwiths! They hit the stores and the fuel dumps!

We are being blasted out of the skies!

I tell you, the fuel dumps are gone!

Now, Ziegel, let's get this mess cleared up!

I want to be airborne again by tomorrow!

Come on, Ziegel!

All squadrons have now been ordered to concentrate on the Marmont sector!

The enemy have just achieved a major breakthrough!

Twelve enemy divisions are moving up on the Marmont road!

They are our target! There is to be no air combat!

No air combat!

Understood? Yes, Herr Hauptmann.

Our army's in retreat, so we must do the same!

Understood, Herr Hauptmann.


Your personal ambitions take second place to the war!

Get out of the way!

Push! Over!

Hurry up! Here come the Jerries!

Come on, boys! Look out!

See it?


Over here!

Five, six!


Come on! All of you!

Otto! Are you all right?

This way. Over here. Come on.

You have cost nearly half the squadron!

We shot down seven planes!

Three of them are mine!

Now you have got 22!

You and I know that 20 wasn't enough for you!

The Blue Max is more than a medal to you! It's a badge...

something to show you are as good as Willi!

Not just Willi!

I will see you never wear that medal!

You disobeyed my orders!

I'm going to have you court-martialed.

Kettering! Sir.

Escort the leutnant to his quarters!

Your nerve's gone! You've had enough!

Stachel! Why don't you do what your wife wants?

Get a desk job in Berlin! Come on, Stachel!

Quick! Quick!

This way! Over here! Come on! Quickly!

Stachel! You've been ordered to Berlin!

Here he is!

Good-bye! Herr Hauptmann.

Millions have been slaughtered on battlefields.

For what reason? For nothing!

I say down with the Kaiser and his generals!

The time is now ours!

Long live the revolution!

Look out!

My dear Otto!

Herr General. Sit down!

Thank you!

Did you have a good journey? Yes, thank you!

Sit down!

Otto, tomorrow, Leutnant Stachel!

Is going to receive the Blue Max!

So you do not accept my report, Herr General.

He is young, vigorous, ruthless!

A born leader... at a time when we need his kind!

I believe Leutnant Stachel should be court-martialed!

For the good military reasons I've set out!

Good military reasons are sometimes not enough! They are for me!


You and I have a greater loyalty than to the book of rules!

To Germany!

We are Germany! Exactly!

Take a look outside!

You see that?

Revolution is just beneath the surface!

If that happens, everything we stand for will be destroyed!

Unless the German Officer Corps stands like a rock!

Intact and... what is more important... untarnished!

I made this... Stachel into a national hero for good military reasons.

If I court-martial him now, it will reflect on the integrity!

Of the whole Officer Corps!

Herr General...

I see now I have notions of honor!

Which are outdated!

They're not outdated!


With care! And love!

For better times!

Here's your report, Otto! I ask you to withdraw it!

I won't do that! I know that!

If you insist on this course, Herr General...

I must resign my command!

I do insist!

In that case, I should like an appointment!

To the staff here in Berlin!

That request is granted!


I have managed to persuade the crown prince!

To make the presentation himself!

Afterwards, Stachel will test-fly the new monoplane!

It will be better if you were there!

I understand, Herr General.

The keys to Leutnant Stachel's suite, please!

Thank you!

Excuse me, please Excuse me!

Stachel, come on!

This way, Stachel!

I trust you will be, uh, comfortable!

A lot more comfortable than I'd expected!

I thought the press reception went rather well, hmm?

I'll take your word for that!

The bathroom is through there!

How do you like your bedroom?

Oh, uh, if there's anything you want... and I mean anything... just call reception, hmm?

You understand? I think so!


I'll call in the morning to take you to the airfield!

Pleasant dreams!

Reception, please!

Reception, this is Leutnant Bruno Stachel!

I don't want anything!

Have I come to the right room this time?


Countess! Herr Leutnant.

May I offer my congratulations?

You may!

Can I get you a drink? Please!

I hope you'll be able to be there tomorrow!

Of course! I want to...

Mmm! No, I want to...

No, please! I want to talk to you!

Talk? Please!

All right!


I'm going away tomorrow!


To Switzerland!

Why? Germany's finished!

The war will soon be over, and I don't want to be here when it happens!


Is the general going with you?

No! I want you to come with me!


I know you're getting your Blue Max tomorrow!

But we wouldn't leave till after the presentation!

I see!

Go on!

You will still have your medal, darling!

It's a piece of scrap! It's worth exactly five marks!

You'll never need to pawn it! I've got plenty of money in Zurich!

Don't you understand what this means to me?

In a few months from now, you will be ashamed to wear a uniform!

You're very stubborn, Bruno!

But if you want to see the war out to the end!

I can get you transferred to a post near the Swiss frontier!

Field Marshal von Lenndorf is a friend!

How dramatic you look!

You can get me transferred, can you?

Do you think I came all this way to run off to Switzerland with you?

You gambled your life for me once with Willi!

That was about flying, Kaeti, not about you!

Run off to Switzerland and become one of your lap dogs?

There's nothing I want to run away from, Kaeti, not even myself!

Come on now, don't be angry!

Where's that aristocratic poise I like so much?

Don't you dare talk to me like that!

Now... Now, Countess, I'll get you that drink!

Serve it to someone else!

The fatherland is grateful, Herr Leutnant.

Thank you, Your Highness!


The field marshal said what?

I can't stop the proceedings now! It's too late!

All right, but where is the field marshal?

Ask him to telephone me as soon as he returns!

Get hold of Stachel! Take him somewhere, anywhere!

Just! Keep him out of sight!

And, Holbach!

Send Heidemann to me! Yes, Herr General.

Herr General.

Otto, I want you to fly the monoplane!

And Stachel?

There has been a little misunderstanding! It will be cleared up soon!

Without a court-martial, I hope, Herr General.

Will you take the machine up?

That is an order? Yes!

Very well, Herr General.

Herr Stachel?

Thank you!

Someone else is gonna fly it!

You said there was a! Technical holdup!

Oh, I think there are other difficulties!

Obviously, while the general irons them out!

He thought it best not to disappoint the public!

What difficulties? I'm afraid I don't know!

Well, who's going to fly it?

Herr Heidemann, I believe!

Frau Heidemann! How are you?

What's happening, Herr Leutnant?

I thought you were going to fly it! So did I!

I never wanted him to fly again!

Yes? Ah, yes! I will hold on!

You're late, darling!

Ah! Yes, Herr Field Marshal!

May I ask how you came by that information, Herr Field Marshal?

You told the field marshal!

That Stachel had claimed two planes shot down by Willi!


Why? Where did you get the information?

He told me himself! Ah!

He's an upstart! He insulted me!

So this time, you really lost your head!

The field marshal is insisting on a court of inquiry!

They're going to disgrace him... an officer with the highest decoration Germany can give!

All because of your stupid little anger! Do you understand?

Do you?

When they do that, they disgrace!

The whole German Officer Corps!

Yes, Otto?

What is it, Otto?

Herr General, that machine is a deathtrap!

The struts are too weak!

For the wing loading under stress!

I was lucky to get down alive!

Thank you, Otto!

Flight office, please!


I want to speak to Stachel!

Stachel, everything's in order now.

You can take her up!

And let's see some real flying!

Sit down!

Sit down!

Control yourself!

Switches on!


Give this to the field marshal!

It is the personnel file of a German officer!

And a hero!

Yes, Herr General.

Stand up, Kaeti!

We'll be late for lunch!