Language : English.
Director : Joseph Kosinski
Writers : Jim Cash (based on characters created by), Jack Epps Jr.(based on characters created by), Peter Craig(story by)
Cast : Tom Cruise, Jennifer Connelly, Miles Teller, Glen Powell.
Genre : Action | Drama
Streaming in Theaters near you.
Truth be told, I wasn’t really stoked about this sequel during its announcement. The original Top Gun, released in the late 80s, was a fun watch predominantly due to the air combat set pieces and oozing machismo. But the film never hooked me with its premise nor its emotional arc and hence I was expecting a sequel that would feed off on the nostalgia of its predecessor and probably an overdose of what worked in it. But boy, was I wrong!
Top Gun: Maverick is everything one would expect from a sensible sequel. It retains everything that worked in the yesteryear super hit and also makes it a point to improvise on every single note that failed to make an impact in the prequel. This sequel feels mature in every aspect, much like its lead Pete Mitchell. It doesn’t inject any new plot points into the narrative but manages to accentuate the emotions that were underdone in the previous one. From a daring yet reckless youth, Pete’s evolved into a caring and responsible adult while continuing to be daring in his happy place – ‘Up in the Air’. In many ways, the film works as a redemption journey for Maverick; for someone who is constantly bogged down by the loss of dear ones, it was only appropriate that the makers gave him a fitting end, at least for now.
Tom Cruise is fantastic once again as Maverick. He’s so effortless and feels like he never really left the character even after 30 years. The charisma and playfulness are intact while he also gets to delve a lot more into the emotional side of the character. Among the others, Miles Teller and Glen Powell, whose equation reminisces the Ice and Maverick relation, make an impact. Even though he appears only for a scene, Val Kilmer as ‘Ice’ leaves a lasting impression.
The action blocks are shot well and are easier to follow when compared to the combat sequences of Top Gun. The climax set-piece was well executed and provided for some blockbuster entertainment. Special mention to director Joseph Kosinski and writers Peter Craig and Justin Marks for not relying solely on the success formula of the 1986 film. They’ve enhanced the existing script to give a more grounded and evolved follow-up film.
Overall, Top Gun: Maverick is a superior sequel in all terms. With some impressive writing that equally succeeds in providing more depth to its central character and also retaining the USPs of its previous part, Maverick easily qualifies as a must-watch theatrical experience.
Verdict : 6/7 stars
The World War II P-51 Mustang seen in this movie is actually Tom Cruise’s own airplane; he is an accomplished pilot in real life.
According to Miles Teller, 3 of the 6 new actors threw up every day of filming in the jets.
According to Miles Teller, the cast got to choose their own call signs. He chose “Rooster” because it was in the same family as “Goose”.
Dedicated to the memory of original Top Gun (1986) director Tony Scott, who was in the process of developing a version of this sequel before his death.
At the insistence of Tom Cruise, there are minimal green screen and CGI aerial shots in the film, and even the close up cockpit shots are taken during real in-flight sequences. This meant that much of the cast had to undergo extensive G-force training sessions, to withstand the physical demands of the G-force pressures during flights.
The shirtless beach football montage had to be shot twice because Tom Cruise did not find the first version good enough. The re-shoot placed additional pressure on the actors to get their ripped bodies back to re-shoot the scene. Cast member Glen Powell recounted, “We shot it and that night we all went out for milkshakes and tater tots. Just like splurge and everybody grabbed a beer. And a week later Tom’s like, “We gotta shoot it again. It wasn’t good enough. We’re gonna shoot it again. And then everybody’s back in the gym again, day and night.” The sequence is being used very heavily to promote the movie after a similar scene in the original film became iconic and an audience favorite.