Fullmetal Alchemist: The Sacred Star of Milos (aka Hagane no renkinjutsushi: Mirosu no seinaru hoshi) review by Adrijan Arsovski - Cinema Paradiso
Fullmetal Alchemist: The Sacred Star of Milos follows two brothers, Alphonse and Elric, as they embark on the most epic quest you can think of, and end up changing the world they inhabit for the better. This is a tried-and-true formula to play upon, but here director Kazuya Murata and his team of veteran filmmakers (Yûichi Shinbo as the writer and John Burgmeier for the English version) shows great knowledge of these two characters, their excellent dynamic, banter, backs and forths, and everything that makes Alphonse and Elric as likeable as they are. In other words: Fullmetal Alchemist: The Sacred Star of Milos is an epic side story that all fans of the Alchemist mythos should definitely see.
The film starts linearly enough, following the two brothers as they sidetracked to help a local girl to find her missing McGuffin. Meanwhile, a seemingly dangerous guy appears out of nowhere and tries to mess up their plans by kidnapping this girl and sacrificing her for the greater good.
Fullmetal Alchemist: The Sacred Star of Milos is a marvel in hand-drawn animation, featuring impressive backgrounds to accompany a stellar character design and fluid movements that puts 3D animation to shame. I don’t know about the exact technique that the filmmakers used to animate their characters, but please keep doing that until the end of times. At some point, I forgot I was watching a Fullmetal Alchemist film and was transported back to the days when Studio Gibli with Miyazaki at the helm was roaming this Earth with their masterpieces. Yes, Fullmetal Alchemist: The Sacred Star of Milos is THAT good visually-wise.
When it comes to the story, this animated feature ticks all boxes of a well-structured adventure/mystery/thriller/action, with a sprinkle of melodrama and a topping of a soap opera (the better ones) scattered across a Shakespearean foundation with a twist. The final twist is not that much of a revelation, as it is a shock to the pre-established values, and is that much better for it. In the story, Alphonse and Elric play secondary roles to the characters of Melvin Voyager and Julia Crichton, two tragic figures whose inclination to follow up with their plans has led them to… well, you can figure that out until after you’ve watched this offering.
Then there are the regulars from Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood, including the bold and brass Roy Mustang, the compassionate Winry Rockbell, the always-at-the-ready Riza Hawkeye, and a tons more. Both fans and newcomers should be pleased with character development and there’s zero room for arguing there as is.
Finally, Fullmetal Alchemist: The Sacred Star of Milos is probably not suitable for kids due to some graphic nature as depicted on screen, but everyone else should enjoy this feature to the fullest. Like now.