Is 'Act of Valor' Worth Your Time? A Look at Collected Movie Reviews

This week, one of the new movies hitting movie theaters is Act of Valor, starring real-life Navy SEALs.  I'm on the bubble if I want to take the time and spend the bucks to go see it in theaters or wait until it hits Video on Demand.

Over at Movie Review Intelligence, they say that Act of Valor has opened to 'fair' movie reviews.

  • The Associated Press calls it weak;
  • Roger Ebert says it's 'good.'
  • The New York Times is weak.
  • Chicago Tribune movie review says it's moderate.
Rotten Tomatoes, the land of sharp-eyed critics, gives it 27%, while their audience scored it at 85% liking it.

Hence, it seems to depend what you base your review on.  The above movie reviews are looking at Act of Valor as a movie.  But Cinema Blend is noted as calling it very good, because it's the closest thing you can come to experiencing this kind of action with actually enlisting.

If you're looking for a real story kind of movie experience, this may not be the movie for you, but if you love watching the action of military units like the Navy SEALs, then I'm betting you will come away having had a good time.

For me, the breaking point for wanting to see a movie would seem to be the website, Entertainment Weekly.  They have a good track record of being in agreement with how I feel about movies.  But they don't have a movie review up of Act of Valor.

My reservations, aside from the directors who are former stunt men taking a stab at directing, is the timing of the movie.  Obviously NAVY SEALs have been in the news of late.

Right after the Osama bin Laden strike, America fell in love with the SEALs.  Then we heard that Kathryn Bigelow, the person who brought us the most excellent movie, The Hurt Locker, is working on a movie based on that accounting.

But then, after her movie was announced, I suddenly started seeing ads for Act of Valor.  I wasn't sure if Act of Valor was a rush job put into theaters to capitalize on the SEALs news or momentum thereof, or if it was already something in production and we're just noticing it because of the SEALs news and Bigelow's production.  (It would seem that Relativity Media acquired the rights to this movie in June of 2011 and it's been in production of some form since 2007.)  Hence, how I started seeing the marketing after the other news.

Regardless, Bigelow's "Unnamed International Thriller" movie is due out in December of 2012, so we don't have too long to wait before we start seeing movie trailers.  And I'm expecting big things from her project.  (If you haven't seen The Hurt Locker, check it out.  It's a compelling piece of entertainment and the first time I caught Jeremy Renner in a movie!)