Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Act of Valor

Lane and I went to see Act of Valor last week. If you aren't familiar, it is about Navy SEALS and includes real life SEALS instead of actors. It follows them on missions around the world, and demonstrates many of the different tasks taken on by SEALS.

 It was abundantly clear that they weren't actors. Some of the dialogue was a bit stiff, but all of the action sequences were better because they weren't actors. The level of non-verbal communication was really cool to watch.

The fact the film used real SEALS causes some spillover into real life. One of the SEALS in the film, Aaron Vaughn, was KIA when his helicopter crashed in Afghanistan last August. I can't imagine the pain his family has been going through this past year. I don't know whether it would be comforting or devastating to see my deceased husband up on screen. I cried my eyes out at several parts during the film. Regardless of the acting skill, I really enjoyed this film. Definitely bring tissues.

Although this isn't exactly related to the movie, I have been thinking about Navy SEAL Petty Office Second Class Michael Monsoor. Below is the official summary of action from the U.S Navy's website. He was killed after jumping on a grenade to save his fellow SEALS.

While vigilantly watching for enemy activity, an enemy fighter hurled a hand grenade onto the roof from an unseen location.  The grenade hit him in the chest and bounced onto the deck. He immediately leapt to his feet and yelled “grenade” to alert his teammates of impending danger, but they could not evacuate the sniper hide-sight in time to escape harm.  Without hesitation and showing no regard for his own life, he threw himself onto the grenade, smothering it to protect his teammates who were lying in close proximity.  The grenade detonated as he came down on top of it, mortally wounding him.

            Petty Officer Monsoor’s actions could not have been more selfless or clearly intentional.  Of the three SEALs on that rooftop corner, he had the only avenue of escape away from the blast, and if he had so chosen, he could have easily escaped.  Instead, Monsoor chose to protect his comrades by the sacrifice of his own life.  By his courageous and selfless actions, he saved the lives of his two fellow SEALs and he is the most deserving of the special recognition afforded by awarding the Medal of Honor.

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