The ‘Star of Milos’ Shines Brightly

Edward and Alphonse Elric return in the “Fullmetal Alchemist” franchise’s second movie of yet another intense, action-filled chapter in their diligent search for a way to regain their original bodies.

While I was hoping that “The Secret Star of Milos” would carry on from the new journey posed at the conclusion of “Fullmetal Alchemist: The Brotherhood,” the second season of the “Fullmetal Alchemist” anime, it instead introduces an entirely new plot along with a new set of characters.

The opening scenes of the movie immediately present us with both devastating tragedy and bombastic action characteristic of the “Fullmetal” legacy. Ed and Al, in their pursuit of a fugitive alchemist who displays alchemy which they have never seen, become entangled in the tension between the people of Milos, an oppressed country, and its oppressors — a situation highly reminiscent of the Ishballan conflict in the anime’s first season. Soon, the fight for Milos becomes what Ed bitterly calls “nothing more than a scramble for a Philosopher’s Stone.”

As a longtime “Fullmetal” fan, I thoroughly enjoyed this movie in that it stays true to the essence of the franchise with Ed’s unwavering, pure morality concerning the Philosopher’s stone, the Elric brothers’ adamant belief in taking responsibility for one’s own sins, the importance of determination and that one’s success depends solely on one’s own power. The desire to recover their original bodies continues to drive the Elric brothers on their relentless journey.

However, the quality of the art seems to have fallen in that the artwork appears to be sloppier and less refined.

In addition, there are unexplained elements in regards to the alchemy of the fugitive alchemist and of Milos, leaving the audience wondering how the phenomenon occurs. Those unfamiliar with the “Fullmetal” franchise may struggle to keep up with the plot because the movie does not provide a sufficient background on the Elric Brothers’ past, but the fans will not be disappointed.

Even with these negligible shortcomings, “The Sacred Star of Milos” does not fail to put forward a remarkably riveting story worthy of the “Fullmetal” franchise, which even puts the first “Fullmetal” movie, “The Conqueror of Shamballa,” to shame.

Rating: 4 out of 5