Act of Valor

(R) ★★☆☆☆

This film, which started as a recruiting video for the U.S. Navy and stars several actual SEALs, depicts a team sent into Costa Rica to extract a captured comrade. There’s a drug lord, Muslim terrorist, all kinds of modern weaponry, and the true-to-life teamwork, training and heroics of the Navy SEALs. Unfortunately, the film comes across as promotion, and its action is far too reminiscent of Call of Duty video games. The movie should convey more of that real danger.

Suggested Next Read

Broadway Baby

Television

Broadway Baby

By Una LaMarche

Television has a freakish Darwinian way of mutating and adapting to meet audience demands. We’ve had music-variety shows, music-video channels, reality-star searches hinging on pitch-perfect live performances, and a certain, um, “gleeful” scripted dramedy about high schoolers bursting into Top 40 song at the slightest provocation. And now we have come full circle with Smash, NBC’s pedigreed drama about the makings of a Broadway show, featuring original show tunes mixed in with pop covers, and starring Katharine McPhee, an American Idol alum-turned-actress.

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