Archive for November, 2012

Act of Valor [2012]

Posted: November 4, 2012 in Hollywood, Movies
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Act of Valor is a 2012 American action film directed by Mike McCoy and Scott Waugh, and written by Kurt Johnstad. It stars Alex Veadov, Roselyn Sánchez, Nestor Serrano, Emilio Rivera, and active duty U.S. Navy SEALs and U.S. Navy Special Warfare Combatant-craft Crewmen. The film was released on February 24, 2012.In the Philippines, a terrorist kills the American ambassador, his son, and dozens of children, using a vehicle-borne improvised explosive device at a private school. The mastermind, a Chechen terrorist named Abu Shabal, escapes to a training camp in Indonesia.

In Costa Rica, two CIA operatives, Walter Ross (Nestor Serrano) and Morales (Roselyn Sánchez) meet to consolidate intelligence about their target, a drug smuggler named Mikhail “Christo” Troykovich. Christo’s men kill Ross and capture Morales, bringing her to a riverside compound. Christo orders her to be tortured but kept alive until she tells the smugglers what she knows.

At Coronado, California, the members of Bandito Platoon, SEAL Team Seven are at home. Lieutenant Rorke confides to Chief Dave that his wife is pregnant, and has the entire team spend time together with their families until their next deployment. SEAL Team Seven is then deployed to Costa Rica to exfiltrate Morales.

The seven Navy SEALs insert into the jungle via HALO and hold position outside the compound all night. At dawn, Special Warfare Combatant-craft Crewmen (SWCC) are inserted down the river from the compound on-board Special Operations Craft – Riverine (SOC-R) and deploy a drone that identifies the guards and a large group of enemies camped down the road. The SEALs approach the compound, hear Morales being tortured, and decide to enter the compound early. Rorke and Weimy, the team sniper, provide cover for the other five, led by Dave, who conduct room-clearing, engaging several enemy guards. SEAL operative Mikey is shot in the eye, blinding him and knocking him unconscious. The SEALs extract Morales, escaping with her and recovering a cell phone full of the information she had gathered. However, the gunfight alerts the enemy quick reaction force down the road, who drive toward the camp. The SEALs commandeer an enemy truck and exfiltrate. The hot pursuit forces them to revert to a tertiary extraction point, where the SOC-R boats and SWCCs extract the team, and shoot up the enemy trucks and soldiers with miniguns.

Cristo and Shabal, who are revealed to have been childhood friends, meet in Kiev. Cristo knows the CIA is watching him and informs Shabal that subordinates will complete their project. Shabal is enraged, but goes to the factory that Cristo specified, where bomb vests are being assembled. These use plastic explosives and ceramic ball bearings to work like a claymore mine, can evade metal detectors, and are thin enough to be worn under any clothing without notice.

On the amphibious assault ship, Senior Chief Petty Officer Miller, the operations officer of the SEAL team, informs Rorke that Mikey will survive but has lost his sight in one eye. In addition, the intelligence they recovered confirms that Shabal and Cristo were working together. Shabal, an old-school Muslim terrorist, seeks to bring the jihad to the United States, while Cristo is not merely a drug dealer, but a smuggler, with routes and contacts for smuggling people into the U.S. Two of the SEALs, Ajay and Ray, are sent to Somalia, where an arms transfer involving Shabal is taking place. The remaining SEALs, composed of Rorke, Dave, Sonny, and Weimy, stay in the U.S. in case the terrorists make it in. Miller himself has been reassigned to SEAL Team Four, hunting for Cristo somewhere on the oceans. Lieutenant Rorke gives a letter to Dave in case he is killed.

The two SEALs in Somalia confirm the presence of Shabal and sixteen terrorists, and identify his plane. They track the plane to an island off Baja California, where the team assaults. They successfully attack and secure the island, killing eight terrorists. Rorke is nearly killed by an RPG that strikes his vest directly in the chest but does not detonate.

Meanwhile, in the South Pacific, Cristo is hiding aboard his yacht, guarded by gunboats and mercenaries. SEAL Team Four identifies the yacht with satellite imaging and deploys several helicopters and gunboats. They quickly kill the guards, capture the yacht, and capture Christo and his family. Senior Chief Miller interrogates Christo. Threatened with permanent separation from his family, Cristo reveals his connection with Shabal and his plans to have his martyrs detonate their vests at strategic points throughout the United States, causing a panic and doing economic damage surpassing that following the September 11 attacks. But Christo says he is powerless to stop the attack.

The SEALs are informed that not all of their targets were neutralized and that half, including Shabal, are en route to the United States, via tunnels underneath a milk factory. They are ordered to link up with Mexican Special Forces and neutralize the remaining targets. U.S. Marines relieve the SEALs, who then travel on to Mexico meeting the Mexican Special Forces. The Mexican leader informs the SEALs that the assault will be extremely dangerous, as the smugglers are supported by the well-armed local drug cartel, and that a “Black Hawk Down”–style stalemate would have political consequences.

The SEALs and Mexican forces assault the factory, hiding in dump trucks. The combined forces cordon off the factory while Rorke, the Mexican officer, Chief Dave, Sonny, and several other SEALs led by Weimy clear most of the factory. The Mexican officer is wounded and the SEALs are nearly killed as the explosive vest of a suicide bomber detonates. As they reach the tunnels, an enemy fighter drops an F1 fragmentation grenade into the room. Only Lieutenant Rorke sees the grenade land. Realizing his team cannot escape the room in time, he dives on the grenade and it detonates, mortally wounding him. Dave pursues the terrorists alone, while Sonny tends to Rorke. Dave catches up to the terrorists as they try to escape through the tunnels, but shoots seven of them as they flee into the entrance. However, Shabal appears and fires nearly thirty rounds from an AK-47 into Dave, destroying his weapon in addition to wounding him critically. Dave draws his sidearm and kills the eighth suicide bomber as he runs into the tunnel. Shabal approaches Dave and prepares to execute him, but is killed by Sonny.

At home, Rorke is given a military funeral with full honors, while Dave survived his injuries. The SEALs pay their respects, punching the gold SEAL tridents that signify them as SEALs into Rorke’s coffin. It is then revealed that Dave’s narration throughout the movie was a written letter meant for Rorke’s son, explaining the valor of the father he will never know, and ending with the poem “Live Your Life” by Tecumseh. The film ends with a dedication to every U.S. Navy SEAL killed in action since 9/11, and a list of their names.

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