Sunday, December 26, 2010


We have not had a whole lot of luck reviewing films about covert military operatives as of yet at Apocalypse Cinema. With Navy SEALS, the trend continues. I would call it mindless fun, but that would be an insult to other mindlessly fun films. Navy SEALS is a beer commmercial interrupted by a misleading military recruiting video.

Charlie Sheen--your first warning to stay away--stars as Dale Hawkins, a brash Navy SEAL who leads a team on several dangerous missions. The first two missions interrupt a wedding of one of the SEALS who will--surprise, surprise--eventually die because of Hawkins’ reckless behavior. The second mission interrupts a game of golf cart polo. It is macho man Miller Time, one assumes.

Hawkins has a brief drunken pity party over his buddy's death as well as a love interest in a woman of lebonese descent in front of whom whom he freely uses the word "raghead,' though out of love, he stops and snaps out of his alcohol pity party. That is as close to real human emotions as the fiilm gets.

The main plot of the film is the SEALS searching for a cache of stinger anti-aircraft missiles hidden somewhere in Beirut. I will give the film its due: the climactic battle in downtown Beirut is impressive. However, it is ruined by a couple issues. One, I cannot tell how they differentiate between their rebel allies and the bad guys. It is a question I asked out loud while watching. How they heck do they know who they are shooting at? They are all dressed like civilians! Two, when they do find a bad guy, said villain waits for a second or two without shooting so the SEAL can get off a one liner. Pure, bad Hollywood right there.

Unless you need to indulge an incredibly fanciful view of combat situations, I would skip Navy SEALS. I do not know if Sheen thought he was following up on the success of Platoon, with this clunker, but he sorely misjudged if so. It is laughably bad.

Rating: * (out of 5)

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