Review: Act of Valor

Andrew Bernstein reviews Act of Valor, directed by Mike McCoy and Scott Waugh.


Act of Valor, directed by Mike McCoy and Scott Waugh. Written by Kurt Johnstad. Starring Alex Veadov, Roselyn Sanchez, Nestor Serrano, Emilio Rivera. Released by Relativity Media (2012). Rated Rated R for strong violence, including
some torture, and for language. Running time: 101 minutes.

act-of-valor

Author’s note: Because I want to address several key events of this story, I’ve written this review in a way that contains spoilers. Readers may prefer to view this outstanding film before reading the review.

For anyone who loves America and wants the country defended against Islamic totalitarians and other savage enemies, a film starring active-duty Navy SEALs doing precisely that should be a rare treat. Act of Valor is that film, and it delivers fulsomely on this promise.

The movie is a fictionalized version of the sort of missions America’s elite commandos engage in. It portrays the tactics, methods, technology, and overwhelming fire power that America brings to bear on her foes when her political leaders permit the U.S. military to take off the gloves and obliterate our enemies.

In the story, various jihadist factions are in league with Russian smugglers and Mexican drug cartels that are to help the Islamists slip across the Mexican border into America. There, armed with nonmetallic vest bombs and deploying female suicide bombers, the jihadists will disperse to every major city, enter crowded public venues, detonate the bombs, and murder countless American civilians.

The SEALs’ mission is to stop them. They do so by means of surreptitious surveillance, uncompromising interrogation, and ruthless assault. Several scenes early in the movie, at the beginning of the causal sequence leading to the climax, showcase both the heroes’ prowess and their dedication to defending America. . . .

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