Fullmetal Alchemist Movie Review: The Conqueror of Shamballa


In desperation, Edward Elric sacrificed his body and soul to rescue his brother Alphonse, and is now displaced in the heart of Munich, Germany. He struggles to adapt to a world completely foreign to him in the wake of the economic crisis that followed the end of World War I. Isolated and unable to return home with his alchemy skills, Edward continues to research other methods of escaping the prison alongside colleagues who bear striking resemblances to many of the people he left behind. As dissent brews among the German citizenry, its neighbors also feel the unrest of the humiliated nation.

Meanwhile, Alphonse continues to investigate Edward's disappearance, delving into the science of alchemy in the hopes of finally reuniting with his older brother.

[Written by MAL Rewrite]


Fullmetal Alchemist: The Conqueror of Shamballa won the Best Animation Film Award in the 2005 Mainichi Film Awards, the Animation of the Year and Best Original Story awards in the 5th Tokyo International Anime Fair, and the Best Animated Film prize in the 2006 Fantasia International Film Festival.


Type: Movie
Episodes: 1
Status: Finished Airing
Aired: Jul 23, 2005
Producers: Aniplex, Square Enix, Shochiku,Mainichi Broadcasting System
Licensors: FUNimation Entertainment
Studios: Bones
Source: Manga
Genres: Military, Comedy, Historical, Drama, Fantasy, Shounen
Duration: 1 hr. 45 min.
Rating: PG-13 - Teens 13 or older


Production of the film began shortly after the television series finishing its original broadcasting on Japanese channels, although pre-production started during the show's run in March 2004. The film's production was led by director Seiji Mizushima, who also had directed the series as well. Mizushima allowed a camera crew and interviewers into the show's conference room at the Bones studios where he described how production went, as seen in a special feature on the DVD release of the film. The conference room was filled with every cut and drawing created for the show and movie, but it was eventually cleared out to make room for other projects.


Based on first hand experience, music in theatrical works such as animated films like this one is often used as a medium to set the tone and/or mood presented in a particular scene. The music used in the movie "The Conqueror of Shamballa" is so ideally well done that it adds another dimension to the movie. This accompanied with other basic theatrical storytelling mediums which we will touch on later only makes the film so much better. For example, this scene at the beginning of the movie where Ed is travelling with gypsies.


All right to start off, the way most animated media are produced is through a three step process:

1. A script is written containing the story's entirety.
2. The script is broken down and drawn into storyboards (much like manga and/or comics).
3. The storyboards are animated by the animators and re given extra additional touches like: voice recordings, sound effects, music, etc.

A surprising thing to note about the movie is that it is done with hand-drawn animation and/or cel-animation. For those of you who don't know cel-animation is a type of animation where each frame is drawn hand by hand by the animator(s). And I have to say Bones captured and utilised this to no end. Take for example the fight with Wrath and Gluttony. Instead of your generic FMA fight with alchemy and transmutation circles; we see a gruesome one sided battle with two very different and we'll written characters. This along with the exceptional visual storytelling and the sound effects aided by the commemorable voice acting just makes the scene exciting as all hell.

Overall Review

This movie was a perfect conclusion to a tragic series. It was not only a original ending by Bones but also a masterpiece of theatrical works. Everything from the choreography to the voices acting was tremendous and downright endearing as all hell. Only watching the anime won't give you the closure you need. So I strongly recommend watching it! I hope you enjoy.