One of Golgo's contracts in the film is a Bernardt Muller, a former Nazi SS captain living under the name Don Hughes. He takes shelter in a luxury penthouse outfitted with bulletproof glass. It's the last night before the contract expires so Golgo has to make a move or lose his perfect professional reputation. How does he do it? By using a modified M16 he got earlier he takes aim at the penthouse... or he would if another building wasn't standing right in his line of fire. Confused over his actions the goons hired by Dawson to tail him ask if it's possible to have a clear shot at the penthouse from his position. Cue the answer as Golgo opens fire and drills through several windows on the obscuring building to hit the penthouse on the other side. Muller/Hughes turns around just in time to catch a bullet to the face, never knowing what even hit him. The goons furious reactions are just the icing on the cake.
The following chase also deserves mention. Golgo expertly dodges an entire army of mooks through the San Fransisco streets before ending it by jumping an unfinished freeway. He then gets out of his ride and guns down ALL of the mooks through fire and flames.
Plus points to Lt. Bob Bragen for keeping up with Golgo for the entire first half for the film, and putting the legendary gunman on his toes. And although he gets killed by Golgo for his trouble, let it be said that it took a total of THREE headshots to take him down, and even then he managed to get a near-fatal shot on Golgo 13 himself.
The entire final twenty minutes of the movie are one moment after another as Golgo 13 finally decides to cut the bullshit and go after Dawson in his tower.
Shortly after he begins his climb to Dawson's office the billionaire CEO sends out his ace in the hole, the cruel killer known as Snake. After disarming Golgo of his prized M16 rifle the two clash in a brutal close quarters fight while trapped inside a moving elevator, making for one of the best battles in the franchise as the two elite assassins trade blows. Just when it looks like Snake has the upper hand and might finally put an end to Golgo 13 once and for all a helicopter arrives and opens fire on the pair. Golgo manages to dodge at the last minute but Snake is caught in the line of fired and turned into swiss cheese, putting a fitting conclusion to the psychotic madman.
With his best man killed Dawson sends out his trump card and last line of defense: a pair of elite soldiers known as Gold & Silver. Golgo puts several rounds into both men with his revolver, seemingly ending the fight before it could really begin... only for them to get back up like he had just shot them with a nerf gun. Gold manages to pin Golgo and begins torturing him by squeezing his bullet wound while giggling like a school boy and very nearly tears his stomach open, only for Golgo to retaliate by bashing his head in with the butt of his revolver. Afterwards Gold is killed with a few final shots and Duke Togo heads onward to finish Silver as well. Enraged at the death of his partner Silver rushes Golgo head on, which he responds to by simply pulling out a grenade, sticking it in Silver's mouth and walking away from the inevitable explosion. Cue one extra crispy headless corpse joining Gold in death as the professional makes his way to his final target.
His army defeated and his will drained by constant failure Leonard Dawson calls off the last of his troops and accepts his defeat at Golgo's hands. Afterwards he engages in one final conversation with Golgo before throwing himself out the window of the Pertrolneum Building to his assured death. Not content to let his mentally shattered adversary simply off himself with a suicide Golgo 13 fires one last shot to complete his final hit, ending the movie with a bang.
Queen Bee herself. She's been proven to be as every bit as dangerous and as deadly as Golgo himself multiple times in the OVA.
Their final showdown deserves a special mention. Both draw their guns and fire a single shot each, with Queen Bee's grazing Golgo's cheek as the camera pans out to show that his shot got her right in the chest. Had Sonia been a split second quicker on the trigger she would have nailed Golgo 13, the world's greatest hitman, with a fatal headshot. Even as she's bleeding out she doesn't cry or beg for her life and instead calmly requests that Golgo complete her original request to kill Thomas before sharing one last goodbye kiss with him. Even in the world of Golgo 13 she is a badass among badasses and fully deserving of her own movie.
The climax of the film? It was all adapted from a story in the manga, which is no less badass:
Golgo first infiltrates the tower by disguising himself as a helicopter pilot. When he enters Dawson's office, he's met instead by a nunchaku-wielding assassin. He dodges the assassin's attacks before killing him with a knife throw to the neck.
Afterwards, Golgo rappels down to a lower floor where he finds Dawson and some of his mooks. A corrupt cop on Dawson's payroll fires at Golgo, but the floor's bulletproof glass window deflects it.
Golgo makes his way back to the helipad, but a police helicopter with a sharpshooter comes to kill him. Golgo nails the sharpshooter while the helicopter crashes on the pad whilst trying to escape.
Then, Golgo goes to hide in a nearby window-washer's basket, while three snipers in an opposite building have their sights zeroed on him. As their shots weaken the glass, Golgo breaks it and tries to get to the elevator.
Three corrupt cops are waiting for him on the 30th floor, but he tricks them into waiting for the wrong elevator. When he does arrive, the cops have their backs turned and are gunned down without any time to react.
Dawson's final trump card is an entire army of his cops waiting in the basement. Golgo hides in the elevator shaft before rappelling down to gun two more cops who had been waiting on top of the elevator.
Then he climbs up the shaft again, this time with one of the dead cops slung on his shoulder. After a quick change of clothes, he lights up some dynamite as a distraction and disguises himself as the dead cop. When the three of the cops come to inspect, he guns them down before lifting himself up to the entrance. There he finally guns down the last of Dawson's mooks before making his getaway.
"Wasteland": Golgo is hired to shoot a rocket grenade in the heart of a failing nuclear reactor that could turn the Greater Los Angeles area into a desert for 25,000 years. He didn't miss, despite the steam and radioactivity in the reactor.
Though it hasn't been released in English yet, Golgo takes a particularly painful punishment in the story "Statistically Explained Sniping" (mentioned in the File G13 section of Viz's Volume 5) - being forced to listen to Led Zeppelin's "Houses of the Holy" on a speaker system at full blast. He survived without a complaint or begging for mercy. And that was after he survived three days of torture.
How'd he follow this up? He escapes, gets his weapons back, and launches a one-man commando assault on his target's mansion, complete with guard dogs and an army of guards. Needless to say, he managed to kill his target, but not before butchering the lot of his henchmen.
The three-part "Fourth Reich" saga has Golgo take on the titular Neo-Nazi organization, which in itself is pretty much a textbook example of a Nebulous Evil Organisation. After their first attempt to kill Golgo ends in failure, they decide to kill him again by trapping Golgo on the top of a pyramid and launching an all-out offensive against him. Golgo stands his ground and survives. Then, deciding that it's time he took care of them for good, he decides to build an exact replica of their HQ in preparation for his one-man commando assault. When he does pull it off, he does so without breaking a sweat, as usual. To top it all off, he blows it up and walks away from the carnage, Terminator-style.
The rest of the volume also details 23 other torture methods that involve him being beat up, almost fed alive to wild animals, drugged, starved and straight-up jailed in hellish conditions. Needless to say, he survived them all and lived to assassinate his targets.
In "Rockford's Ambition", Golgo takes on the Rockford family, rumored in-universe to be the richest family in the world. Golgo turns down David Rockford's attempt at hiring him full-time as an enforcer. In retaliation, Rockford freezes his assets and attempts to run Golgo into the ground. When Golgo accepts a contract to kill Rockford, the latter decides to call on the one man who may be able to stop the hit: the President of the United States (implied to be Barack Obama in the anime; in the manga it's Ronald Reagan). The president personally warns Golgo that he may suffer the wrath of the US if he follows up on the hit. Golgo ultimately gives a big middle finger to everyone involved by delivering a headshot to Rockford.
Also of note is a few stories later the Rockfords strike back and develop an incredibly complex plan to kill Golgo and hire their own man to do the job. Golgo beats them AGAIN, and they haven't tried anything else since.
The climax of "Queen of Crime": Golgo's target, an Agatha ChristieExpy is safe inside a US army base in Iceland. How does Golgo get her? He buys a Lockheed F-104 Starfighter, hires a cargo plane to carry it, launches the Starfighter in mid-air and goes on a high speed missile attack on the base.
"The Orbital Hit" has him shoot down a runaway satellite IN SPACE.
Equaled, if not surpassed many years later when he does the same to another satellite... only his time he uses a bow and arrow.
In "A Fierce Southern Current" Golgo's twelve-billion dollar fortune is exposed by arms merchant Jakob Nachtbloem. When Golgo meets up with him, he's faced with having his money used as a prize for a war over Asian oil rights with his career exposed over. Not one to accept this, Golgo kills Nachtbloem, donates most of his fortune to the UN, and walks away with the remaining money to start over again.
"The Sea God Awakens" features Golgo's longest kill shot yet - he snipes a corrupt shipping magnate on his personal sail vessel at 1500 yards. From an oil tanker in a storm.note To put it in perspective, according to the Wikipedia page for the longest sniper kills in history, the world record at the time was 2,500 yards, held by Carlos Hathcock. The second-longest was 1,538 yards, held by Major Herbert Sleigh of the American Expeditionary Force in WWI.
Any time Golgo takes down a target who's a total monster. There are perhaps too many to count over the years, but when you read those stories, you can't help but grin every time they get hit with a serious dose of karma delivered by Golgo's trigger.
The ending of "One Minute Past Midnight": the whole story makes it look as if his target is an ex-CIA mole locked up tight in Death Row. He's not. His real target is the Georgia state governor, safe in his mansion negotiating with the prisoner's old CIA handler for his commutation. The reason being, if the ex-CIA agent is executed, all of the secrets he collected while an operative will be released to the public. Golgo shoots the bulletproof windows protecting the governor just before he can make the call to stop the execution. The CIA agent (painfully) dies a blubbering mess while his handler desperately tries to halt the execution (and fails since he doesn't have the password).
The fact that the series itself is approaching 200 tankobon volumes as of 2019, Takao Saito is STILL involved in the manga since he started 1968, and the series having NEVER missed an issue of its parent magazine (which started as monthly, then bimontly publication) for fifty-two years. Not bad for a series that stars a Villain Protagonist hitman virtually devoid of any morality or heroic attributes.
As a bonus, the Viz release says that the creative team typically has a week or two to create one manga chapter. While that seems like a reasonable deadline on paper, you also have to realize that the manga is FULL of Gun Porn and quite heavy on both the technical and research sides. And they still do this on top of delivering quality artwork that hasn't changed much in 40 years.