October 25, 2014
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Act of Valor
Don Fowler
3 stars
Reviewer's Rating:

(Navy SEALs in action)

What started out as a recruiting film for Navy SEALs developed into a full-length action movie featuring more than one act of valor.

The action scenes, performed by real-life Navy SEALs, are exciting and daring, while the personal "fillers" in between are only marginally acted and filled with numerous clichés. It is still a movie worth seeing for those who like action movies and want to see what it is like to be a Navy SEAL.

There are hours of training for dangerous missions that may or may not ever be necessary. We get a glimpse of the brave men, their families, their thoughts and especially their bonding into a cohesive unit.

The "based on real events" shows the SEALs breaking up a terrorist group that has developed undetectable suicide vests and breaking up a gang of drug smugglers who have kidnapped and brutally beaten a female CIA operative. We get a bit of personal history on the men, some told through monotone voiceovers, and learn a bit about their language used in communicating their activities, stuff like the "package" being the hostage. Their are some tense, frightening scenes, as we realize that operations like this really happen. I even got the feeling that at times they were telling us too much about how they operate.

The film ends on a sad note when one of the SEALs doesn't make it.

While the bonding does seem a bit stretched, you can't help but feel a sense of pride, knowing that these brave men are risking their lives for our freedom.

Rated R, with violence, profanity and a torture scene that will make you cringe.


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