I got together with my brother to go see a movie that was playing for a week only at one of the theaters in my city. That movie was Fullmetal Alchemist: The Sacred Star of Milos.
My brother and I are nerds okay?
Pop culture blog time. It’s been a while.
Anyway, it was a truly atrocious English translation. More than once my brother and I looked at each other and said “obvious statement is obvious…” because characters had a habit of saying things that did not need to be stated. In my experience with subtitled and dubbed anime, from before I moved on to British television, that is usually a case of translators trying to do translation in very odd way…in which, instead of using synonyms for words and terms that are used over and over (which are not as common in Japanese. A touch, a tap, and a caress are basically the same word) they just use the same terms over and over again.
So when the bad guy uses alchemy to escape and one character says something about his alchemy being strange, the other just says “He’s an alchemist.”
No shit Alphonse, I think we realized that when he blew up the prison and escaped by way of a giant tower of ice summoned from the ground.
It happened over and over again in the movie.
Also the plot was a little…transparent?
After a mysterious prisoner with only a few weeks left on his sentence breaks out of prison in Central City, the Elric brothers attempt to track him down. The search leads them to Table City in the southwestern country of Creta, where Alphonse rescues a young alchemist named Julia from the very man they are trying to capture. In the thick of the fight, they literally tumble into Julia’s home turf, the slums of Milos Valley, and are embroiled in the grassroots rebellion of her people.
We saw a mountain near the city at the very beginning and my brother said (approximately) “Does that look like a volcano to you?”
There was magma later…a lot of it.
Oh there were a few plot twists…and some truly incomprehensible actions done by characters…like the guy who got his face back at the end…why did he put his mask back on?
And why in the world would Edward think that giving his brother some “alone” time with a girl was useful. Alphonse is a non-corporeal spirit trapped in a suit of armor. I don’t think girls are quite his main thought at the moment…no hormones after all.
Though he still acts like a 14 year old boy around her…so who knows.
Also, apparently my brother thought it was funny that, within about 5 minutes of time, I said “I don’t think magma works that way” and “I don’t think revolutions work that way”. I didn’t say it the same way intentionally…
But the big question you want to know the answer to is, why did we go see a movie that was destined to not be all that great?
2.) Fullmetal Alchemist
Not sure when I started watching the series, but it, quite frankly, was brilliant. I’m going to start watching the reboot of it (Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood) soon. It follows the original story of the comics much more closely than the first series did.
Anyway, why did I like it so much?
It is one of those rare shows that talks directly about the consequences of bad choices and the sanctity of life. It has a depth that is rare in “cartoons” (though not hugely rare in Japanese anime) and, if you can get past the animation and the overdone comedy and slapstick moments, it is a lot of fun to watch. Brotherhood is the one I would recommend as a lot more world building was done in that series, which allows for more political issues to be dealt with as well, as countries come to blows with each other over various issues and our intrepid, if slightly crazy, brothers are caught up in the middle of it…generally causing half the commotion and 2/3 of the explosions…