German wartime drama. As World War II begins, the strongest German young men enter exclusive schools known as 'Napolas' to train as future leaders of the Third Reich. In 1942, a recruiter from one such Napola sets his sights on Friedrich (Max Riemelt), a talented adolescent boxer, who sees the training and prestige offered by the Napola as his ticket out of an impoverished family unit run by his anti-Nazi father. As the war escalates, the school's military training also intensifies. Unscrupulous trainers humiliate the more vulnerable cadets in front of their peers and send the others out on dubious war game exercises. In one such nightmarish event, they instruct Friedrich and his friend Albrecht (Tom Schilling) to shoot escaping POWs, who turn out to be unarmed Russian civilians. Tormented with guilt, Albrecht rebels, and Friedrich must choose between his sworn allegiance to the Fuhrer and his best friend.