a place for sharing all things photographic and some things not

Act of Valor (the film)

There’s a new dramatic film coming up entitled Act of Valor, set to be released in the US on the 17th of February. It tells the ‘story’ of the US Navy Seals as the viewer follows various platoons out on various missions. As most people know I’m drawn to war related things like a firefly to the flame, so this caught my eye.

The way it was filmed was interesting, some parts really feel like a documentary but the entire film was actually filmed with the intention of being a dramatic film. Most of the shots were caught during training missions (so there was no need to stage big effects, everything was ‘real’ to some extent). The actors were Navy Seals themselves and during situational shots (ie in Mexico), locals were hired for the shoots.

It’s captivating for sure. The description of how the film was shot is itself rather long. Some of the scenes are fantastically done considering that most of these were done with 1 shoot.

As military cutbacks come to the forefront and veterans start to pour in from Afghanistan, works like these immediately gain importance in the world. I feel a little conflicted however, for this film will no doubt leave young teens itching to go overseas and shoot something (which is no doubt one of the intentions) and it feels like a very realistic shooting game. As documentaries like Hell and Back Again and Restrepo show, such a depiction is far from reality.

Proceeds from the film will indeed go to reintegrating veterans into the society, but I’m not sure how to feel about the entire affair.

For HDSLR fans – most of the film was shot with a 5DMII and with the D800 and D4 joining the fray as potential HDSLRs, the market only seems to be getting bigger. You can read about shooting the film and other details here.

But what I really’d like to know is what do you feel about things like this? The sensationalism of war is nothing new, but at this particularly delicate point in world history, are works like this appropriate to be put out to the masses? Can we accept the responsibility of the things that we might start?

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