Review: 'Act of Valor' Shows Navy SEAL Action

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WASHINGTON -- The Navy SEALs have gotten nationwide recognition following missions by the elite group that led to the death of al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden and the rescue of two aid workers being held hostage by Somali pirates.

Now, the new film "Act of Valor" provides a roller coaster ride with actual Navy SEALs and live ammo.

Directors Scott Waugh and Mike "Mouse" McCoy are stuntmen who wanted to bring something different to the big screen, real life SEALs acting as if they were on an actual mission.

"The only way to properly represent the real stories is by using real SEALs to tell their brothers' stories," McCoy said. "You just couldn't do it with actors. It just felt strange and weird and disconnected and not authentic."

That difference makes for exciting action scenes, with the pop and zing of real guns slamming out real bullets.

The downside: using real SEALs also gives moviegoers the acting ability of untrained amateurs. The elite fighters may be real heroes but it's unlikely they'll be getting real Oscars anytime soon.

Parents be warned: the movie also has its share of profanity. At least three dozen choice words fly out of the characters' mouths, and about a dozen of those are in the "R-rated" category.

Still, "Act of Valor" is certainly a pro-American movie like many others promoting patriotism in recent years.

The film celebrates American soldiers and paints a picture of the good guys versus their radical Muslim enemies and drug-selling Russian and Mexican foes.

"Act of Valor" gives Americans a chance to go celebrate the red, white and blue without feeling guilty.

In the movie, there's no excusing the evil guys, and no criticizing the good guy Americans. "Act of Valor" is a wild action thriller that will let viewers get their "patriot" on.

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Paul  Strand

Paul Strand

CBN News Washington Sr. Correspondent

As senior correspondent in CBN's Washington, D.C., bureau, Paul Strand has covered a variety of political and social issues, with an emphasis on defense, justice, and Congress.  Follow Paul on Twitter @PaulStrandCBN and "like" him at