Opening in theatres this Friday from directors Scott Waugh and Mike McCoy comes an action film with a twist with “Act Of Valor”
This film tells the story of an elite United States Seal Team. The government has discovered that CIA agent Morales (Rosalyn Sanchez) has been kidnapped by terrorist Shabal (Jason Cottle). Shabal is about to make his way into the United States bringing with him a new weapon more dangerous than has been seen before.
The team must first rescue Agent Morales and then go across the globe to find the one man who can lead them to the terrorist – a man names Christo (Alex Veadov). It will take all their skill and training to track down the man who has the potential to hurt thousands of Americans.
FINAL WORD: As this film has very few Hollywood actors, it is important to focus on the Seal team members. Recently I spoke to co-directors Waugh and McCoy, this is what they had to say, “In the beginning as a filmmaker, yes you do use actors. It was our initial conception of the project, telling real stories and using the actors.”
“But once we got to meet the guys is when we realized the complexity of the character and had the realization that we had to use the real guys. An actor is only going to portray on aspect of the character. We wanted the complexity of it; the husband side, the brother side, the father side, the warrior side and the sacrifice.”
From Captain Duncan Smith, Active Duty, US Navy Seal, “ACT OF VALOR is a film that is truly unique in every way. I don’t think Hollywood has ever gotten the Seal ethos or Seal persona right. The goal is to allow somebody to see who we are understanding the men themselves and the sacrifices they and their families contribute everyday.”
Putting this unique story together, written by Kurt Johnstad of ‘300’ fame, it is director McCoy that points out, “Everything that happened in the film has happened at one time to a team member. It is so accurate to the stories these men tell we incorporated them into the film. The moments are sometimes so profound.”
I asked both Waugh and McCoy what they hoped each person who sees “Act of Valor” will walk away with. “We want the American public to connect with the concept of an act of valor. Doing heroic things for the sake of your brothers and sisters. There are people all throughout the military and first responders that risk their lives on a daily basis for the person next to them or people they don’t know. We really think that that’s an important idea to grab a hold of in America right now.”
TUBS OF POPCORN: I give “Act of Valor” three and a half tubs of popcorn out of five. Although the Seals themselves will be the first to admit they are not actors, it doesn’t stop the film from being watch-worthy. It is definitely filled with action that is not CGI induced and filled with live fire! The directors were in the middle of the action shooting all the footage which shows their dedication to this important project.
During a recent screening, the audience was filled with cheers and, in some cases, awe of these men who risk everything to protect our country. It is a personal look at their lives and what it takes to do a job that requires such intensity and dedication. Everyone I have spoken to about the men in the film tell me they are a humble group.
Perhaps it is SO1 Ray, Active Duty, US Navy Seal who said it best, “We didn’t kid ourselves into thinking we are actors. This is just who we are.” It is who you are indeed and thank you.
In the end – they must balance their commitment to country, their team and the family who waits back home.