This video is the result of over six months of work. The original plan was to make an FMA video that reflected what I saw as the main themes of the show... Sacrifice, the horror of war, love, loss, and sin. I started the video before the show was finished airing in Japan and waited until the end before I finished it, in order to incorporate everything from the entire show. As it turns out, I'm glad I did, because the last two episodes make up a good portion of the video and it wouldn't have as good without them.
The AMV begins with scenes from the Gate, in which Ed sees images of war and suffering from our world as well as his. Sacrifice and loss are the main themes of the first section, where Ed gives his arm to save his brother's soul, followed by a brief series showing the boys' change from innocent childhood to semi-adulthood and maturity. After this intro (at 1:30) I move into a brief montage showing the main themes in little 5 second segments. After this is a scene of Nina and her transmutation, who embodies the themes of loss and death.
At 2:02 begins the Philosopher's Stone segment of the video. Since the stone is created through the sacrifice of human life, this segment focuses on the theme of loss and sacrifice, as shown most clearly in Scar's sacrifice and Ed's decision to not kill even though the Sins will kill his brother.
3:30 is tbe beginning of Hughes's death segment. This section is, in my opinion, both the best of the video and was also the hardest to do. This secene touched me so deeply, and the death of a loved one - especially a dedicated father, husband and friend - clearly shows the level of realism FMA accomplishes.
Hughes's death leads into Roy's segment, and the horros of war. From here on the video switches back and forth between Ed and Roy, in order to show the contrast in their life-views. Roy's quest for vengence even though it will cost him everything he's ever worked for is noble in its own way, in that he is willing to make himself a martyr in order to avenge Hughes, but I believe he also has a self-motivated need to destroy "King" Bradley, because of the horros he was forced to endure under his orders. This segment more than any other (starting at 4:10) displays the true horror of war. Soldiers who act unwillingly upon their orders to kill, soldiers who take joy out of the murder and pain of others, the loss innocents suffer at the hands of military might, and the inherent evil of destruction were the themes I attempted to get across in this segment. And, in case you were wondering, Yes. It's a statement about the war in Iraq. Moving on...
4:48 is the ultimate example of Ed and Al's sacrifice and loss. Their attempt to revive their mother has suceeded, though not in the form either of them would have wished. Ed's maturity and his evolution from a spoiled brat to a mature, responsible adult is clearly proven in his decision to destroy his mother and everything she represents, even though killing his mother is the last thing he wishes to do.
As mentione earlier, Roy's quest for vengence ends at the segment beginning at 5:07, which leads into Ed and Al's final sacrifices. Al sacrifices himself to save his brother's life and Ed attempts to sacrifice himself in order to save his brother's soul. Their love and willingness to give up everything - even their dreams - is the final example of their progression from boys to men. Their sacrifice wipes the slate clean of their previous sins and mistakes, allowing them to begin anew. Their sacrifice is their atonement. Roy's atonement for his past sins is inherent in his destruction of the person embodying those sins, and the sacrifice of HIS dream in order to accomplish said atonement. Hence... the title of the video.