Upon Further Review: “Uncommon Valor”
I vaguely remember loving the “Uncommon Valor” when I watched it as a pre-teen on NBC’s Saturday Night at the Movies. It had guns and other assorted awesomeness, of course I would love it at that time. It is important to note that I was not allowed to watch any “R” rated films and also liked the A-Team during that same period. So my idea of awesome at that time is suspect, at best.
Another note before I continue:
I watched this film last night after work…so 3 AM. I had a bad day, not Daniel Powter bad…but bad nonetheless.
For whatever reason I decided it would be a good idea to have a beer while watching “Uncommon Valor”. A Frank the Tank/ Shark blood in the water moment struck as soon as the first drop of “Vortexed Miller Lite” hit my lips. I knew that I was going to go old school and would be pounding some beers…at 3 am, on a Thursday while watching a POW rescue film starring Norman Dale. I ended up drinking six bottles during the hour and forty minute running time; that is a more than decent pace for this time in my life.
“Uncommon Valor” plays like “Rambo: First Blood Part II”, with more heart and less Stallone machine gun orgasm faces. You can check both of those items in the positive column.
It stars Gene Hackman as a retired Marine colonel who is determined to rescue his son from a POW Vietcong prison in Laos. Hackman is very convincing in his portrayal as a desperate father. While the distraught father beginning plays it serious the rest of the film has less gravitas.
Not that I don’t like the remainder of the film, I do. It is just less gritty and more silly. The building of the incursion team is very “Dirty Dozen”, only with lesser players. I love Fred Ward, Reb Brown and Randall “Tex” Cobb, but they are no Charles Bronson, Telly Savalas or John Cassavettes.
I would be remiss to not mention that the great Tim Thomerson is in the film. If you have to ask why he is so great you will never get it. Never.
All of these thoughts are based on the a viewing compromised by the chugging of beer on a pace that this body has not seen for the better part of a decade. I remember enjoying the film, but ultimately being underwhelmed by it. The tonal issues must have been pretty significant for them to stand out amidst the beer cascading down the Vortex technology as it was early yesterday morning.
Recommended with beer, recommended with reservations if sober.