Film review: Act of Valor

posted at 8:00 am on February 25, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

Americans love military and action films, as box office returns show. But what if filmmakers eschewed ridiculous plot lines for actual missions fought by American commandos, along with realistic depictions of terrorism, violence, and weapons fire?  And what if most of the actors on screen aren’t actors at all, but actual Navy SEALs?  Act of Valor tells those stories and uses those fighting men — and the result is an excellent action movie that keeps viewers riveted to the action until the very end.

The film opens in cross cuts between a SEAL team on leave and a CIA operative who gets captured in Costa Rica after she tracks down a Russian drug smuggler — and discovers that he’s also facilitating for a Chechen Islamist terrorist group, which just conducted a successful attack on a school in the Philippines.  The SEALs think their mission is over until their commander gets intel from a phone captured during the rescue and discovers that the Chechen terrorist leader has plans to attack inside the US, using suicide-bomb vests that can defeat any metal detector.  Can the SEALs stop the group from infiltrating through Mexico and wreaking havoc and mayhem inside the US?

Act of Valor turned out to be surprisingly entertaining, and very well made.  The production qualities are excellent, and it uses some familiar quick-cut techniques in the battle scenes that enhance the action, but otherwise uses traditional approaches in cinematography.  The sea chase scenes are especially good, but nothing beats the depictions of close-in fighting interspersed throughout the film.  I have a friend who has served in the SEALs for decades, and he once told us Tears of the Sun (an excellent film) came closest to depicting how SEALs work in real life.  I suspect that this will move to the top of his list.

The SEALs are also surprisingly good on screen, although clearly new at emoting for an audience, hardly one of the skill sets they find necessary in their work.  That enhances the authenticity of the presentation, though, and it’s very easy to like these men — and to suffer along with them.  There are no archetypes, really; there is one expectant father who wants to come back to see his child be born, a running subplot in the film, but for the most part focuses on the men doing their jobs.  There are a few lighter moments, but no laugh lines or comic subplots.  

Oddly, the film that I think comes closest to this as a comparison is … Backdraft.  That film used a few authentic firefighters in speaking roles and had more backstory and subplots, but it took very seriously its responsibility to tell about the bravery and toughness of firefighters everywhere, and what they have to face.  Act of Valor is a better film for its closer focus and better pacing, but it has that same general feel when it comes to the interactions on screen between the SEALs. It’s easy to take this film seriously when it treats its subject with this much respect.  Act of Valor celebrates traditional values of duty, honor, and especially sacrifice, and reminds us that every day men like these — and these men — keep us from harm we never knew was coming.

Needless to say, this film is rated R for very good reasons.  There are only a couple of instances of cursing, which surprised me a little, but the violence is depicted very realistically (or as realistically as they could get with an R rating).  A number of people get shot, a few blown up, and blood spatter is not spared in those scenes.  There are also depictions of the aftermath of torture involving the CIA agent, not the torture itself, but it’s still pretty intense.  I’d be very cautious about taking a pre-teen to this film, and would strongly suggest to parents to see it by themselves first before thinking about whether pre-teens or younger teens are ready to handle it.

I would highly recommend Act of Valor to everyone else.  There are not a whole lot of movies coming out of Hollywood that tell these stories or celebrate those virtues — in fact, there are damn few of these, just as there are damn few of these men.  We need to flock to the theaters to support those that do get made, and to show our appreciation for the men who made this one.  And fortunately for us, we get to see an excellent and moving film, too.

Be sure to read Kevin McCullough’s deconstruction of some of the criticism Act of Valor has received from the Left.

Update: I had the headline and the first half of the review correct, but about halfway through started calling the move Acts of Valor.  It’s Act [singular] of Valor, and I have corrected it where I had it wrong.


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Ed, is there character development in there? Chase scenes only go so far.

AshleyTKing on February 25, 2012 at 3:37 PM

yes. Hopes and dreams dashed? Yes but all heroic for the seals.

AH_C on February 25, 2012 at 4:27 PM

Pretty good movie – great action, tells a good story, well worth seeing. I wish there could have been more character development so we could get to know them a little better but understand why they couldn’t do that when using real heroes.

My only real bone to pick is the Jewish terrorist – of course it’s possible, but pretty darn unlikely. Overall – 3.5 out of 4 stars.

independentvoice on February 25, 2012 at 4:33 PM

yes. Hopes and dreams dashed? Yes but all heroic for the seals.

AH_C on February 25, 2012 at 4:27 PM

Yes, there are some good characters developed? That is my hope.

AshleyTKing on February 25, 2012 at 4:39 PM

Glad I read Lone Survivor last week by Marcus Lutrell which gave me an enormous respect and admiration for the training these ‘best of the best’ endure – that, plus their incredible bravery.

Wow!!

karra on February 25, 2012 at 3:51 PM

Lone Survivor was the first book that caused me to “well up”. Finest war story I’ve ever read.

Marcus Lutrell is total BA, and an excellent story teller.

eyesky on February 25, 2012 at 4:57 PM

Many people here at home hate the police for doing their jobs, and doing it well. Should they pack up and stop?

I understand the isolationist impulse, but that isn’t the real world. There are friends and enemies out there, and attempting to ignore them will not help us. I happily admit that there are actions and positions we have taken that demand review and adjusted response. However, if we began to pull back from every position of force and support of ally that are currently in place, it would be a gift for our enemies, and a dagger in the back of our friends.

Pretending the world will all right itself if only the meddling Americans stopped is the worst sort of blind worldview (and the very largest reason why Ron Paul cannot be permitted the Presidency). Recognition and analysis of reality must trump wishful thinking in the realm of statesmanship, foreign policy and diplomacy. Take note of the vast improvement in American-Russion relations brought about by Hillary’s “reset button”. They are opposing us more and more strongly each day on issues which affect us economically and politically. It doesn’t work.

Yes, it is not the most desired situation for our military to have become “the world’s police force”. But that’s the way things have come to be, and nobody else on Earth is more capable, or more noble in their intentions, than we. You can choose to believe that or not, but no military force in the history of the world has so surgically invaded a sovereign nation with the purpose of removing a despotic tyrant and returning control of that nation to its own people. We did that. We did it very well, in spite of how the news portrays us. Don’t believe their lies, believe the millions of Iraqi citizens who were glad we came, and who are sad we’ve left.

Freelancer on February 25, 2012 at 3:29 PM

A most excellent post!

Conservative4Ever on February 25, 2012 at 5:11 PM

Lone Survivor was the first book that caused me to “well up”. Finest war story I’ve ever read.

Marcus Lutrell is total BA, and an excellent story teller.

eyesky on February 25, 2012 at 4:57 PM

I have to say I’m guilty also. I “welled up” during several parts in Lone Survivor. Same when he went on Glenn Beck the 1st time to talk about those thugs killing his dog DASY. To see a Navy SEAL tell an emotional story about his dog and knowing his story made me cry like a baby.

Conservative4Ever on February 25, 2012 at 5:16 PM

I’ve never been to a movie where when it ended, no one moved. The packed theatre was completely silent. No one got up to leave. The words on the screen said that this film was dedicated to the SEALS who had lost their lives since 9-11. Then came the list of names. No one moved. Well, that’s when I lost it. And I wasn’t alone.

http://blog.chron.com/texassparkle/2012/02/act-of-valor-run-do-not-walk-to-see-this-movie/

A friend and I attended the matinee yesterday. Loved the movie, and the same thing happened at the end. No one left, and I sat crying through the credits.

My only real bone to pick is the Jewish terrorist – of course it’s possible, but pretty darn unlikely. Overall – 3.5 out of 4 stars.

independentvoice on February 25, 2012 at 4:33 PM

Have you heard of that Jewish guy named Soros, whose family sold out Jews who were hiding from the Nazi’s?

lovingmyUSA on February 25, 2012 at 5:41 PM

Her screening of the movie had Pam Geller apopleptic. Apparently the arch-villain is a Jew? This is very bad news. They couldn’t find a Chechen terrorist? Or a heroin smuggling Albanian white-slaver? I’ll have to see the film myself, but this news is a serious let-down.

Anyway, isn’t it true that the Navy Seals officially don’t exist? What’s with all the publicity? It seems Obama has turned the Seals into his own private killing krew.

Not sure I want to play along with this.

sartana on February 25, 2012 at 6:24 PM

Just finished the book,and I’m stoked to see the movie tonite after work.In the book Christo isn’t a terrorist per se. But more of a p.o.s.middleman,hooking up his childhood friend with some hardcore arms dealers so that he can put together his terrorist plot.As far as the Seals acting skills go…can’t be any worse than Mark Wahlberg,or Keanu Reeves….but that’s my opinion..and Patriot Vet,thanks man

falsecast on February 25, 2012 at 7:03 PM

Just saw it. It was better than I expected and save for one scene where the to-be daddy is saying goodbye to his wife before deployment, I thought the acting by the actual SEALs was quite good.

I can see why the left is having conniptions over it, tho. Brave men using some high-tech toys and violence to defeat bad guys who, you know, actually DO stuff like this. Heavens, we can’t put that stuff in a film!

:)

RedNewEnglander on February 25, 2012 at 7:44 PM

havn’t seen the movie yet, but from what i can understand, the arch-villain who connives and plots dastardly deeds using muslims as his proxy is jewish, i don’t know the context, but this was supposed to be based off real life, having a jew secretly commit acts of terrorism by hiring others is a big modern day canard for anti-semites. That being said, i’ll watch it

golembythehudson on February 25, 2012 at 7:53 PM

I think her review told a little more than Morrisey’s, and I’m thinking I’ll decline. Leave it to the Navy to f*ck something like that up.

http://atlasshrugs2000.typepad.com/atlas_shrugs/2012/02/dont-see-act-of-valor-seals-battle-the-jew.html

Virus-X on February 25, 2012 at 7:57 PM

reliapundit on February 25, 2012 at 9:42 AM

For the record, Cristo is a drug smuggler; the terrorist is Chechen.

IrishEi on February 25, 2012 at 8:25 PM

UGH. To clarify:

For the record, Cristo (the Jew) is a drug smuggler; the terrorist is Chechen.

IrishEi on February 25, 2012 at 8:27 PM

I don’t understand why they made the bad guy Jewish. The terrorists they’ve been fighting for more than a decade are Muslims. I think I might agree with Pam Geller on this one. http://atlasshrugs2000.typepad.com/atlas_shrugs/2012/02/dont-see-act-of-valor-seals-battle-the-jew.html

blackgriffin on February 25, 2012 at 8:42 PM

blackgriffin on February 25, 2012 at 8:42 PM

i don’t know what to make of that, i don’t feel like being the pc police, and i love a good action flick, but this isn’t a normal movie, it was sanctioned by the U.S govt, from what i have heard, this character is a behind the scenes conniver, who controls muslims and sends them to do terrorism, this is a big modern day canard that has no basis in reality, they claim that these missions were based off actual events.

golembythehudson on February 25, 2012 at 8:50 PM

Saw the movie opening night- it is awesome. Much better than I thought it would be. Aside from being patriotic and pro-military, it was actually a decent movie. Go see it!

AirForceCane on February 25, 2012 at 8:57 PM

blackgriffin on February 25, 2012 at 8:42 PM
golembythehudson on February 25, 2012 at 8:50 PM

You guys really should see the movie before you start blacklisting it.

As I stated before, the Jewish guy is a drug smuggler who has a childhood connection to the Chechen, who is the actual Islamic terrorist. And yes, after he (Cristo, the Jew) is threatened, he agrees to facilitate the terrorist’s activities.

Pamela Geller is going WAY too far with this one. This is not an antisemitic film, covertly or overtly. Get a grip.

IrishEi on February 25, 2012 at 9:00 PM

count on Hot Air family to have the same thoughts I did- being Jewish I was thinking “come on man! out of all the drug smuggling honchos in the world you have to make him jewish?!!”

even among the Russian mafia, 98% of it is Christian. not sure why they had to go out of their way to make Cristo a Jew. it is almost like they are setting up the good christian soldiers to battle the Jew and the Muslim..

hopefully it is just an oversight on the part of the movie makers who don’t realize that everything they do will be examined.

that being said, the main bad guys are Mexican drug gangs, Chechen and Filipino Muslims, and the Jewish Cristo guy who is like the rich ringleader of a drug smuggling gang

AirForceCane on February 25, 2012 at 9:05 PM

Some of you will never get it. So you refuse to see a movie simply because of the bad guys is Jewish? I hate to break it to some of you, but not all Jews are angels. And if you are going to criticize, at least get your facts straight:

The Jewish character (of Russian decent) is not the main antagonist, but an arms dealer who is helping a childhood friend. That friend just happens to be a Chechen rebel who converts to Islam later in life.

Did it ever occur to any of you that the producers of the film made the arms dealer Jewish to show what hypocrites Muslims are? You know, doing business with your most hated enemy.

As for the film, I thought it was great and plan to see it again. The action scenes are very realistic and definitely is not a “Rambo” style movie.

One request I would make for any one seeing this movie is please remain seated until the part listing all the SEAL’s that have been killed in action since 9/11 has passed. Many of the people in the theatre began to walk out while the list was playing and I consider it the ultimate disrespect…..

Fazman on February 25, 2012 at 9:10 PM

Seen Act of Valor this afternoon in Ft Collins, CO. Not as liberal as Boulder but it is a college town and the theater was pretty full. A few young guys made the comment as we exited that it was quite a recruiting film. Not sure if they were sarcastic or not.

I also thought it was a very good movie with lots of action. More than a couple times I caught myself trying identify what scenes were based on actual events. There were a couple moments that the acting was awkward but that isn’t what they get paid to do and I wouldn’t make fun of them for it :)

When the movie finished everyone was silent, reminded me of the ending of Saving Private Ryan when I seen it in the theater. There were quite a few tears. I will definitely purchase when it releases on DVD.

Most of what I seen wasn’t completely new to me as I have read quite a bit on the SEALs and have seen many documentaries. I don’t think any tactics were given away that haven’t already been exposed. But, I agree with the General that was a bit upset at the exposure the SEALs are getting. Everyone is captivated and thirsts for information on SpecOps but one doesn’t see the Green Berets or Delta getting the same attention and I don’t think their missions are any less secret or important, they are just much quieter about what they do.

One thing about the SEALs not getting paid, I would love to see the income they would have made if they were actors go to the DAV or similar organizations that assist wounded veterans.

Russ86 on February 25, 2012 at 9:18 PM

IrishEi on February 25, 2012 at 9:00 PM

i’m not blacklisting it, i’ll probably go see it, i’m just questioning the role that they put forth, this movie was sanctioned by the U.S govt, based of real events and scenarios

filipino muslims? check- abu-sayeff, al-qaeda is big in their Islamic provinces

chechen terrorists- big check, they are notorious

mexican drug dealers? check

A nefarious jewish kingpin who “facilitates” and aids in Islamic terrorism? really?, where has that ever happened, i read about that scenario often on random forums, but that only exists in peoples imaginations, this movie was meant as red meat and as a recruiting pitch for the seals, they used accurate depictions and characters, except this Jewish guy, why put him in there…

golembythehudson on February 25, 2012 at 9:41 PM

Is this the same Seals movie that we heard was commissioned by the White House in the wake of the Bin Laden killing?

If so, then it’s shocking to see people going gaga over it on this website. There really is no Conservative Movement- it’s just a bunch of yahoos.

sartana on February 25, 2012 at 10:05 PM

Is this the same Seals movie that we heard was commissioned by the White House in the wake of the Bin Laden killing?

If so, then it’s shocking to see people going gaga over it on this website. There really is no Conservative Movement- it’s just a bunch of yahoos.

sartana on February 25, 2012 at 10:05 PM

No, it is not the same movie. Are you going to apologize for your comment? Somehow I doubt it.

ShadowsPawn on February 25, 2012 at 10:50 PM

Watching this superb film, one thought struck the BemusedMalkinite (later reinforced by reading a news item on a Mexican governor being investigated for taking drug cartel bribes):

when the HELL are we going to see politicians brave enough to unleash our military’s holy hell on the narcoterrorists and secure our border?

They are the only ones we have with the gear and training to do this, and we’ve already borrowed for the gear, so why not rework Posse Comitatus and get down to business?

BemusedMalkinite on February 25, 2012 at 11:05 PM

I just got back, I loved the movie. Very well done.

ted c on February 25, 2012 at 11:15 PM

Acts of Valor:
Acts of Liars and Frauds.

Acts of Valor:

Sgt. Jerry Michael Shriver Army Special Forces MAVSOG Vietnam

Small unit cut off surrouned by a very much larger force of NVA/VC.
When comm’d on what he need to get his small team out.
“Its ok we have them surrounded from the inside.”
Later on a Bomb Damage Assessment of the Combined VC/NVA headqts. accross in Cambodia, on the ground in a very bad deal Sgt. Shriver went missing, he is still missing.

Acts of a Liar and a Fraud:

Lt. John F. Kerry now Democrat Party U.S. Senator from Mass.
All his awards and citations obtained by lies and fraud by his own hands, met with the NVA/VC in Paris France while still in the U.S. Navy Reserve, as a member of the Vietnam Vets Aginst the war was at meeting were the killing of U.S. Senators and House members was disscused, and his rather strange DD-214 and Discharge.
All who read this know John F. Kerry.

Very few of you know of Sgt. (Mad Dog) Jerry Michael Shriver.

This huge black mark on our honor as a Nation should not be, yet there he sits John F. Kerry with his “CIA hat” in is office a bright shinning lie of dishonor on U.S. all.

APACHEWHOKNOWS on February 25, 2012 at 11:38 PM

The time tested axiom :”Everything before ‘but’ is BS”

Dr. Carlo Lombardi on February 25, 2012 at 3:53 PM

Dear, dear Dr. Moron, Iraq never attacked us, Afghanistan never attacked us. The Taliban never attacked us. We attacked and invaded their countries. However, Saudis did attack us on 9/11, yet we never attacked Saudi Arabia. Why is that?

And for you other schmucks who think that just because there are bad people in other countries out there we have to do something about them. No, we don’t. If they attack us I am all for annihilating them, but we haven’t done that have we?

We are not the police of the world and have no business pretending we are. Of course if you think it is our business, then I am sure you are enjoying all the d*ck sucking and apologies our fearless leaders are giving to the “Afghan’s at the moment. I guess you are getting what you asked for. Enjoy.

woodNfish on February 26, 2012 at 12:00 AM

My only real bone to pick is the Jewish terrorist – of course it’s possible, but pretty darn unlikely.

He wasn’t a terrorist, he was a smuggler who had been contacted by a childhood friend who WAS a terrorist. He even states during interrogation that their viewpoints are quite different. Just like any other people, not all Jews are religious and not all Jews are good people. He wasn’t a good guy, but he wasn’t quite the monster his former friend was. Since the creators have made the point that the incidents in the movie were based on real events, that villain may also have been based on a real person. I found the plot quite realistic myself.

It was a great movie and I thought the SEALs were acceptable actors. In a way, it made the movie much more realistic, they were just themselves.

In addition to the action, I found the characters well-done, you could feel their empathy for the CIA operative when they rescue her, she wasn’t just some anonymous “package” they had to retrieve. The Russian villain was also a well-rounded character, a bad guy but not quite evil, like the Chechen terrorist.

There were a number of funny moments, especially during the interrogation of the Russian. The guy in the interrogator’s role is a real intelligence officer, just back from Afghanistan, making it all the more real.

Like others have said, the theater was completely quiet at the end and most people stayed for almost all of the credits. Listing the names of the fallen since 9/11 was especially poignant.

Hopefully, this movie is also an eye-opener for those who don’t think our borders need to be secure. The poor illegal Mexicans that have been here for 10 or 20 years aren’t the problem, it’s the collaboration of the Middle Eastern terrorists with the drug cartels that are the problem. We’ve captured thousands of illegals from the Middle East already and that’s probably a small fraction of the number that come over the border. Why we haven’t been hit again since 9/11 is an utter miracle.

My son, who heads off to Air Force basic training in April, has already seen it twice and I wouldn’t mind seeing it again, it was an excellent movie.

Common Sense on February 26, 2012 at 12:07 AM

For all you naive people on here, I did a little search and easily found several cases of Jewish drug smugglers:

Iranian Jewish

Smuggling Ecstasy into Japan
More Ecstasy

Yet More Ecstasy

Israelis Trading Secrets for Drugs with Hizbullah

Not so far-fetched, is it?

Common Sense on February 26, 2012 at 12:17 AM

Since Pudd’nhead didn’t see fit to establish this in his blog entry, and other commenters have mentioned government co-operation with the venture and actual Seals were used in the filming, I’m going to assume that this is indeed the movie the White House commissioned.

According to a piece at the Hollywood Reporter, the producers of Act of Valor “had the cooperation of the Navy, and got unprecedented cooperation and access…”. In the same article, we find that the film was screened for the President and his family at the White House two weeks ago. After finishing the film, Obama remarked to one of the producers: “These are my guys.”

So this is indeed the movie in question. The Seals are not even supposed exist officially, much less be starring in movies about their tradecraft. Totally inappropriate. Has there been any tradition or precedent that this White House has not crapped all over? In this instance to the wild of applause from the Right.

Like I said, a bunch of yahoos.

sartana on February 26, 2012 at 12:57 AM

sartana on February 26, 2012 at 12:57 AM

This is not the same movie. Act of Valor has been in production for a few years, filmed in between the SEALs deployments and before bin Laden was killed.

Russ86 on February 26, 2012 at 1:50 AM

Russ- yes, you’re correct. There are several Seal-related projects in the works, this is not the movie I was referring to. That movie is about the raid to get “Bin Laden” and will be released in October.

However- did you read my link? The producers of Act of Valor had co-operation with the government and were originally approached by the Department of Defense to make a movie on the Seals. Since actual Seals starred in this film, it’s certain that they were allowed, or forced, to take part in this. You might remember the grumbling on the Right last year when the film was announced, as the Seals are not officially supposed to exist much less be starring in films about their exploits. Please read the link. At the top of the posting at the Hollywood Reporter is a photo of a Navy Seal parachuting in to the Hollywood premier of the film. This whole thing just stinks to hell. For shame.

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/act-valor-navy-seals-bandito-brothers-290556

Strange that Morrissey didn’t see fit to mention any of this in his review. Shocking to see people on the Right applauding this abomination.

sartana on February 26, 2012 at 2:16 AM

sartana on February 26, 2012 at 2:16 AM

The DoD has actually supported many movies, as long as they cast the military in a positive light. It is also my understanding that all expenses such as fuel have to be reimbursed.

The SEALs were never classified as non-existent as far as I know but SEAL Team 6 (or whatever they call themselves now) is/was classified. I don’t think anything in the movie could be considered senstive since the plot was fictional. The parts depicted that were based on real experiences were more to the tune of taking an RPG to the chest and surviving and throwing ones self onto a grenade to save their buddies.

As far as the SEALs parachuting into Hollywood, per the link, I do not agree with this. It seems to be an endorsement from the DoD to Hollywood and the military is not supposed to endorse anything, and there is going to be a lot of money made off this film. Pretty sweet deal considering the SEALs can’t be paid and the actors aren’t exactly A listers.

I’d have to say I’m not to pleased with the timing of the release of the movie about the bin Laden raid either, let alone that the movie is being made at all. Aside from the timing of the release, I bet there is some info being passed on that should not be. This is the same director that put out The Hurt Locker and an EOD tech claimed that was his life that was depicted.

Although I like these movies just as much as anyone I have to side with General Vaught on this when he said the SEALs need to get out of the media. Apart from the operational considerations, it appears that the SEALs are being used to endorse a presidency.

Russ86 on February 26, 2012 at 3:44 AM

Russ86,

Agree in total with your post. SeAL Teams work in the background, and should not be so far out in front. It’s bad enough that the baddies sorta know our tactics; let’s not demonstrate them.

What I have not seen is any depiction that most Teams spend the majority of their time in surveillance work, not tactical work. It’s intensely boring until it’s time to work, and takes a certain patient personality. Although I admit this is hard to film for a paying audience.

“Tears of the Sun” was pretty good, except for the part where Bruce Willis takes a round in the shoulder and essentially blows it off. Sorry, Die Hard, that $h!t hurts. Oh, and Monica Belluci………………….

Bigurn on February 26, 2012 at 5:16 AM

Russ, you’re definitely one of the adults in the room. I’m wishing I’d been a bit less shrill in my posts above. You’re right about the Seals being taken advantage of in this way. From the link I posted above, after the screening at the White House, Obama remarked of the Seals- “Those are my guys.” Which just makes me sick considering all the simian chest-thumping he did during his victory laps after news of the raid was released. Especially considering the loss of 22 Seals just days after the Bin Laden raid in a very bizarre and as far as I know still unexplained engagement, all of this is just not right. It should be obvious that everyone’s being played here.

sartana on February 26, 2012 at 5:23 AM

Do you guys that keep saying, “The SEALS aren’t even supposed to officially exist” have any clue what you’re talking about? Walk into any recruiting station and there they are on posters everywhere. SEAL Team Six was the only group that was blacked out and that ended over a decade ago.

If you’ve never been in the Navy, figure out how the world works before assuming you’re an expert on anything you don’t have a clue about.

ellesar04 on February 26, 2012 at 6:54 AM

I’m sorry, but this movie was awful. The acting was awful. The story line was unfocused and bad. The characters were a cliche, especially the Muslim with the overgrown beard on the video. The dialouge appeared forced and unnatural , even if the banter was realistic. And the interrogation scene by older guy was pathetic; if that is all it takes to get someone to talk, intelligence would be easy.

Besides being a bad movie, I was confused why the Seals were doing it…

RedSoxNation on February 26, 2012 at 7:35 AM

Why are we disclosing our tactical training to the world?

RedSoxNation on February 26, 2012 at 7:38 AM

Amazing movie! The SEALS in Act of Valor are breathtaking in their courage and resoluteness. The audience last night was silent at the end, watching the names of SEALS who have died since 9.11 scroll by. Thank God for our brave warriors and shout out to our families serving in harms way!

indyvet on February 26, 2012 at 9:21 AM

Navy SEAL action film Act of Valor is headed to an easy win over the Friday-to-Sunday period.

Act of Valor shot up a great $9.1 million on Friday, which should lead the film to a $25 million weekend and an easy number one position

ted c on February 26, 2012 at 9:29 AM

Seals

RedSoxNation on February 26, 2012 at 7:35 AM

Seals

sartana on February 26, 2012 at 5:23 AM

For the record it is SEALs, not Seals.

Conservative4Ever on February 26, 2012 at 10:58 AM

Wait a second. So you’re saying that this is a movie that depicts not only the US military but the US itself as somehow decent and honorable?

How did this get past the censors?

Reported to #Attaaaaaaaaack!Watch, #RevWright, #’Chelle

CorporatePiggy on February 26, 2012 at 11:11 AM

from what i have heard, this character is a behind the scenes conniver, who controls muslims and sends them to do terrorism, this is a big modern day canard

golembythehudson on February 25, 2012 at 8:50 PM

I’ve bolded the only canard. You heard from someone who didn’t follow the plot. Duh.

ProfessorMiao on February 26, 2012 at 11:26 AM

watching the names of SEALS who have died since 9.11 scroll by.

Seems they cut that part of the credits for Canadian audiences. Sad.

ProfessorMiao on February 26, 2012 at 11:28 AM

woodNfish on February 26, 2012 at 12:00 AM

You’re a whiney little b!tch, aren’t you.

Are you leftists ever going to come up with something new – or just keep whining and sniveling about some “illegal war?
Hint, sniveler: We’re out of Iraq and leaving A-stan. And, if anybody supports our apologizer-in-chief, it’s whiney little brats like you.

Solaratov on February 26, 2012 at 11:54 AM

sartana on February 26, 2012 at 12:57 AM

No, stupid. It’sNOT the same movie. The one you’re trying to recall with your under-powered little mind is called “The Killing of Bin Laden”; and it has not been released yet. And isn’t set for release until late November.

You, however, are looking more and more like a yahoo all the time.

Solaratov on February 26, 2012 at 12:00 PM

sartana on February 26, 2012 at 2:16 AM

Who told you the SEALs “aren’t supposed to exist officially”? If that’s so, why would the job of SEAL be listed among the career choices for Naval recruits?

SEAL Team Six (and one other Team) do not ‘officially’ exist – but then, neither does SFOD-D (Delta Force)

As far as the :government” financing this film – that’s only partly true. The film received technical assistance from Naval SpecWar – Not from the ‘government.
In fact, NavSpecWar is in a bit of hot water about assisting with the movie without ‘official’ DoD sanction.

YouREALLY aren’t too big on using facts, are you?

Solaratov on February 26, 2012 at 12:08 PM

ProfessorMiao on February 26, 2012 at 11:28 AM Sad indeed that they cut out SEAL losses since 9.11 – had to be close to 100 and it was difficult to count. Heroes all, not to mention our outstanding allies. Heroes all.

indyvet on February 26, 2012 at 1:19 PM

I was ready to applaud when the movie ended, but then the tribute to the fallen rolled. You could hear a pin drop.

csdeven on February 26, 2012 at 1:48 PM

I was ready to applaud when the movie ended, but then the tribute to the fallen rolled. You could hear a pin drop.

csdeven on February 26, 2012 at 1:48 PM

Yes. That was one heck of a long list for such a small community…

CorporatePiggy on February 26, 2012 at 2:28 PM

The box office numbers for AoV are disappointing so far. For the opening weekend it ranks 616 all time for gross per theater. I thought it was going to have a bigger opening than that. I guess I’m part of the problem, I’ll be seeing it this week.

Aplombed on February 26, 2012 at 2:32 PM

This was a stunning visual of a movie, it blows all that CGI crap out of the water, pun intended. The gun fire was so much more believable, double tap and triple tap rounds instead of the obligatory ‘spraying a case of ammo from one clip’ garbage. The night jumps were beautiful, worth the price of admission, and the swift boats with the mini-guns complete with live fire/tracers made me happy to pay my taxes. And yes, no one moved or made a sound until well into the credits here as well. Haven’t seen that in a while if ever.

Pole-Cat on February 26, 2012 at 3:52 PM

I watched this movie with mist in my eyes and a lump in my throat. The theater had a sizable number of viewers who stayed to the end and all left without a sound. Yeah, there are better movies, better writing, better acting, etc. but viewing this movie felt like a privilege and it was a humbling experience.

RightTurn on February 26, 2012 at 4:32 PM

I watched this movie with mist in my eyes and a lump in my throat. The theater had a sizable number of viewers who stayed to the end and all left without a sound. Yeah, there are better movies, better writing, better acting, etc. but viewing this movie felt like a privilege and it was a humbling experience.

RightTurn on February 26, 2012 at 4:32 PM

I did too–particularly when Chief Dave was writing the letter to the LTs son–or he was telling the past history about he and his LT. At one point he said, “your dad was my dad’s boss, and my dad was his Chief, and now, here were are in the Teams in the same place as our father’s. We have warrior blood in our veins.” I thought that was really neat to see that side of them.

ted c on February 26, 2012 at 5:46 PM

Saw the movie last nite and think it s excellent.I will be seeing this one again.These boys can bring the pain and then some.And one of the qualities of the movie was seeing the SEALs work in harmony with some of the other Navy and Marine units,to get the job done.As far as giving away any secrets as to how they operate,there’s nothing in this movie that you couldn’t find on You Tube with a minimal amount of searching.If you liked this movie,I highly recommend you read the book.Alot more detail and back story into the men and the weapons/machines they use.

falsecast on February 26, 2012 at 5:50 PM

Saw it yesterday. Go and see for yourself and then you’ll know why it is you get a good nights sleep. These guys, the damn few, are out there covering our 6. Be very grateful.

Kissmygrits on February 26, 2012 at 5:53 PM

We have warrior blood

ted c on February 26, 2012 at 5:46 PM I’ve tried to explain this to friends who have never served, and usually give up. It’s “the few, the happy few, the band of brothers” (and sisters). Defies explanation but an incredibly strong bond.

indyvet on February 26, 2012 at 6:23 PM

I went to see this movie today, and have to agree with Ed that it is a very good, entertaining, and at times very moving experience. Some of the reviews I’ve read on the internet and in the news papers have been either mixed or downright hostile. Of course many of these professional reviewers have a very anti-military agenda, and only give good reviews that show the military in a bad light.

Any patriotic American should enjoy this well done effort. Kudos to the SEALs who participated in the production. Though not professional actors, they did a wonderful job.

simkeith on February 26, 2012 at 6:25 PM

Enjoy the Obama re-election agitprop. Thumping his chest in front of his new killing-krew. While you look on like a sad Apache, marveling over trinkets and beads.

sartana on February 26, 2012 at 7:42 PM

Simkeith
I also saw this movie today, you are correct very moving, any real patriot who doesn’t fight tears is just plain ignorant.
thank you ED for the heads up great movie!!!!!!!

angrymike on February 26, 2012 at 8:41 PM

You’re a whiney little b!tch, aren’t you.

Are you leftists ever going to come up with something new – or just keep whining and sniveling about some “illegal war?
Hint, sniveler: We’re out of Iraq and leaving A-stan. And, if anybody supports our apologizer-in-chief, it’s whiney little brats like you.

Solaratov on February 26, 2012 at 11:54 AM

You’re a little low on reading comprehension if you think I support Odumbass and his apologists, aren’t you Solaratov? You’ve been so sucked in by our government’s propaganda that you don’t even recognize our culture of war. Unlike neocons like you, I am a real conservative; I believe we should mind our own business. Guess what? So did our founding fathers.

Answer this question: When was the last time our country was not at war somewhere in the world?

You and your fellow travelers should read some Ron Paul. You might learn a few things about what this country could be and how it has gone so terribly wrong. Maybe you’ll even begin to recognize the propaganda.

woodNfish on February 26, 2012 at 10:22 PM

I saw the movie last night. I think they used the POV shots a little too much, but those might have been a gimme to the “first person shooter” gamers.

there wasn’t a lot of character development, and other than the occasional shots of the pregnant wife you don’t get a sense of how far apart the separate missions were. yes, there were timestamps but they were more distracting than informative. there was a lot of use of technology (like the Pointer UAV) and I had to explain what some things meant to my less military-savvy friends that I went with. honestly though if they DID explain everything the movie would have been 4 hours long and boring, so this isn’t entirely a bad thing.

am I the only one that asked why no one thought to put a TARP over the back of the dump trucks near the end of the movie, so the people on the roofs couldn’t look down in?

warhorse_03826 on February 27, 2012 at 3:13 AM

A majority of professional movie reviewers panned it but audiences loved it. What that proves is that professional reviewers are anti-American butt-wipes of decidedly limited worth. I will be seeing it and hope it dominates the box office for a while.

swinia sutki on February 27, 2012 at 7:49 AM

About the cursing. I’m not at all surprised by the lack of cursing. One, dialogue had to pass through some PR guy for the Navy. Two, SEALS have a different culture. They don’t have to prove how macho they are. Everything I’ve heard indicates they’re professional, well-read, and thoughtful. Not the type whose vocabulary is limited to F-bombs.

hawksruleva on February 27, 2012 at 10:35 AM

I watched this movie with mist in my eyes and a lump in my throat. The theater had a sizable number of viewers who stayed to the end and all left without a sound. Yeah, there are better movies, better writing, better acting, etc. but viewing this movie felt like a privilege and it was a humbling experience.

RightTurn on February 26, 2012 at 4:32 PM

Our theater applauded at the end. It was nice.

hawksruleva on February 27, 2012 at 10:38 AM

Long time friend and WW2 Marine (now deceased) witnessed the UDT’s doing their jobs at Okinawa. The UDT’s were swimming miles in the ocean carrying out demolition of beach obstructions prior to the invasion. Under constant artillery fire from the Japanese.

A younger Marine asked Gunny if there might be sharks in the water. Milt says, “I pitty the sharks.”
He characterized the UDT men with the following:
“Part man, part fish, mostly nuts.”

Missilengr on February 27, 2012 at 3:58 PM

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