I should preface this review by saying this is the first Harlock-related anime I've seen. Which means, I'm missing 40 years of backstory, but I took that into account when watching this anime.
Story: (9) Despite this being my first Harlock, the movie does a great job of catching the viewer up to speed. It gives a lot of the backstory without being completely monologue and boring. There are bits in the movie that don't make a whole lot of sense, especially when it comes to the technology used. Again, it might just be my ignorance to the series, but having a super cannon come out of Jupiter without explanation seems a little odd.
Animation: (10) So... beautiful. The CGI for this movie is gorgeous. I can honeslty say I haven't seen many movies with CGI like this. Maybe some short films, but rarely a full-length feature. Clothing, hair, skin, even the smoke looked almost live-action instead of animated. The older characters, Harlock and those from the original series, are pretty recognizable, if given a harder edge. Like, Kei's catsuit being darkened and given random zippers at the shoulders and elbows, and Miime changing hair color.
Sound: (8) I watched the dubbed version, and the lip movements weren't quite synced up to the words. The sound effects were pretty good, although it was hard to imagine what dark matter should sound like when exiting an engine... I'd also heard that Harlock and Miime were pretty good musicians, so I was hoping they'd try and incorporate that into the movie. No such luck.
Characters: (9) Again, this movie had some well established characters. Some backstory is provided for the crew, but not much. A lot of the character development is reserved for some newly introduced characters: Yama (Logan) and Isola (Ezra). The rest of the cast remains fairly static.
Overall: Even if you haven't seen the Harlock series from the 1970s or any of the movies, this is a great stand alone movie. I'd definitely recommend it.