The Guardian Andrew Davis

There’s no pressing reason to see this big pot of inspirational swill, but those who find themselves watching it might find themselves bemusedly entertained. Kevin Costner plays one of his trademarked grizzled men of action here as a veteran Coast Guard rescue swimmer who loses his crew in a freak accident. After the tragedy he’s sent to recuperate by training new recruits for his program. There he meets super-cocky newbie Ashton Kutcher, who flaunts his swimming prowess and generally annoys Costner until, of course, the "shocking revelation of past trauma” is revealed. Many poolside shenanigans ensue. There are absolutely no surprises in this standard military-as-character-builder drama, including the bar where everybody hangs out and the saucy young woman (Melissa Sagemiller) with whom Kutcher falls in love, but somehow the film’s dopey enthusiasm kept me going to its singularly ludicrous coda. After scores of films that listlessly put forward agendas about which they don’t really care, here is a movie that earnestly invests in every single bad idea it has. And for those of us who have to suffer the slings and arrows of movies devoid of conviction it’s just enough to keep us interested. To be sure, this isn’t a real movie, and anyone looking for something genuinely creative is advised to keep looking. But for those who must dote on the solemnly dumb, this is most likely manna from heaven. And incredibly, Kutcher acquits himself quite well in a role that many would have thought out of his range. Extras include a commentary with no surprises by director Andrew Davis and writer Ron L. Brinkerhoff, a wussy alternate ending that was wisely discarded, four deleted scenes, a standard-issue "making of” doc and an okay tribute featurette about actual Coast Guard divers. (Touchstone/Buena Vista)