I watch a lot of television, movies, trailers, and trailer breakdowns for work, but here's the thing: I can't tell you or anyone else what makes a genuinely good military movie or show, especially if I haven't seen it yet. And I wouldn't call myself a "critic" in the classic sense. Then again what do they know; they said The Hurt Locker was a masterpiece.

What I do know, is that I get excited about stories that make an honest effort to achieve some measure of authenticity, whether it's a full blown dramatic reenactment of some major conflict, or seeing characters interact (even briefly) in a way you recognize, because you've had those conversations on base, overseas, or while you were drunk at one in the morning in the barracks.

At their best, military movies and shows focus on a character's service as more than a lazy plot device to explain why they're good with guns, have a high and tight, or shout out bits of military lingo at random moments; at their very worst, they may trot out the broken vet trope to add a little drama. And of course, there's the laziest of them where everyone's an operator — even lawyers, apparently.

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U.S. Marine Corps/Lance Cpl. Jose Gonzalez

Editor's Note: This article by Gina Harkins originally appeared on Military.com, a leading source of news for the military and veteran community.

An infantry Marine suffered a life-changing injury after being shot during a training exercise at a California military base.

A lance corporal with 1st Battalion, 25th Marines, a Massachusetts-based Reserve unit, was injured during a live-fire event at Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center Twentynine Palms on July 28.

The Marine was treated and stabilized by a medical support team on the scene before being transported to Desert Regional Medical Center in Palm Springs, about 50 miles from the base, said 1st Lt. Cameron Edinburgh, a Marine spokesman.

The injured Marine has since been transferred to a specialized care facility, where Edinburgh said he remains in serious but stable condition.

A report from the Naval Safety Center, which documents serious Navy Department mishaps, said the lance corporal was paralyzed from the neck down. The safety center described the training exercise as a company-level event.

"We recognize our training operations are inherently dangerous, and we place safety at the forefront of every mission," Edinburgh said. "We stand with the family of the injured Marine, and we are grateful to the medical professionals for their care and support to one of our own."

The incident was not previously disclosed before it was released on the Naval Safety Center report this week. The center documents all on- and off-duty Class-A mishaps, which include permanent total disability.

Marine officials declined to address several additional questions about the incident, citing the ongoing investigation. Those questions include whether the incident is considered accidental; if it prompted a safety stand-down or changes to training procedures; if anyone is facing charges or reprimand; and whether the Marine was wearing personal protective equipment at the time.

The Marine's unit is preparing to deploy to the Asia-Pacific region, where it will conduct multiple exercises, according to photos detailing its training at Twentynine Palms. The live-fire exercise was part of the unit's pre-deployment training.

This article originally appeared on Military.com

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Lake County Sheriff's Department

A U.S. Marine reservist has been charged with felony kidnapping, stalking, and criminal confinement after he allegedly kidnapped a 16-year-old Indiana girl and brought her to Arkansas.

Lance Cpl. Alexander Martin Curry-Fishtorn, 22, was charged Tuesday in Indiana's Lake Superior Court with 17 felonies and four misdemeanors, according to The Chicago Tribune. On Aug. 16, Curry-Fishtorn allegedly kidnapped the girl and drove her to a friend's house in Arkansas with an apparent plan to hold her there until she was 18, ABC 7 reported.

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Marines embarked aboard the amphibious assault ship USS Boxer recently sailed through the Strait of Hormuz with an armored vehicle strapped to the flight deck, ready to fight off drones and Iranian gunboats.

A light armored vehicle (LAV) belonging to the 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit can be seen on the flight deck as an AH-1Z Viper lifts off in a recently-released Marine Corps photo, NPR's Phil Ewing first noted.

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Investigators are looking into the possibility that a Marine Raider was killed by friendly fire in Iraq, U.S. military officials told Task & Purpose on Monday.

Gunnery Sgt. Scott A. Koppenhafer died on Aug. 10 of "injuries sustained during combat action in Iraq," according to Marine Forces Special Operations Command.

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Airmen assigned to the 1st Air and Space Communications Operations Squadron perform pushups during a physical training session on Ramstein Air Base, Germany, March 14, 2017. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Timothy Moore)

The topic of this week's opus is physical fitness, and that is laughably ironic considering this reporter could never meet any of the military services' height and weight standards. (Your humble narrator once considered opening a restaurant called "Pvt. Pyle's Forbidden Fruit," which would only sell jelly donuts.)

As you beloved readers likely already know, at least 31 percent of Americans between the ages of 17 and 24 are too overweight to serve in the military. For those young men and women who are physically fit enough to enlist or get commissioned, the rigors of initial training are only the first hurdle.

Once in the military, service members must regularly pass physical fitness tests, and as the Defense Department prepares to fight big wars again, some of the services have made their physical standards more demanding.

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