ACT OF VALOR takes the covert-military-mission subgenre that we know so well from the works of Cannon and Nu-Image and puts a new spin on it: it’s a special ops procedural. Directed by 2005 Baja 500 winner Mike “Mouse” McCoy and stuntman/documentary editor Scott Waugh (together known as commercial directors “The Bandito Brothers”), it combines the old “elite team of warriors have to stop a mad bomber” formula with sort of a Soderberghian approach, building the movie around non-actors and taking advantage of their real life skills and unpolished presence. Except for the abducted CIA asset they have to rescue (Roselyn Sanchez from RUSH HOUR 2) the heroes are all played by actual Navy SEALs. “Active duty,” the ads and press releases like to say, so their last names are left off the credits.
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VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.