So I finally watched Top Gun Maverick on Saturday, and I have to say it was incredible. Top Gun Maverick stars Tom Cruise as Captain Pete ‘Maverick’ Mitchell, Jennifer Connelly as Penny Benjamin, and Miles Teller as Lt. Bradley ‘Rooster’ Bradshaw. ‘After more than thirty years of service as one of the Navy’s top aviators, and dodging the advancement in rank that would ground him, Pete “Maverick” Mitchell finds himself training a detachment of TOP GUN graduates for a specialized mission the likes of which no living pilot has ever seen. Facing an uncertain future and confronting the ghosts of his past, Maverick is drawn into a confrontation with his own deepest fears, culminating in a mission that demands the ultimate sacrifice from those who will be chosen to fly it.’
I’m going to get this out of the way now, but I haven’t seen the original Top Gun. Yes yes I know what everyone is going to say, but I just haven’t seen it yet. I will rectify that soon though. I say that now as I feel like there’s a lot of stuff about this movie that would hit harder if I had that prior experience and connection to it. There’s a lot of things in this movie that probably give more emotional moments to people that have that connection. Right down to the opening credits as I can guess those are right out of the first movie. From music and characters to the story itself this is a very nostalgic movie. The story and plot of this movie is relatively by the numbers in a way, but I think that works in the movie’s favour as it gives room for the character interactions and for the big selling point of the movie, the jet sequences, which are done pretty well.
The story and plot work for the movie it’s trying to be. It’s very much a throw-back movie, very much feels like a movie that came out in the 80s. It’s a feel good movie about the passing of time and how it’s not about the fancy new technology, it’s about the person in control. The plot does go a few places I won’t expecting, but it still ends in a happy ending. One thing I like though is how they do show that time has passed, and how the one stuck in the past in a way is Maverick himself. A lot of the movie is also kind of showing that there is a still a place for pilots like Maverick out there to still be in the air, and that it isn’t too bad to be stuck in the past. Sometimes a situation calls for someone like that.
The characters, relationships and performances are all great. Some interesting interactions and great character work. Everyone was believable in their roles, and are passionate about what they were doing. You can see that they were having fun throughout the whole thing, being able to do stuff that not a lot of people out there are able to do.
The movie is gorgeous, lots of wide landscape shots and great camerawork with the subject matter. Everything is captured incredibly well, especially the inner cockpit shots. They really give you that sense of feeling what the actors and characters are feeling. Might as well get to it now, but the jet scenes are incredible and the selling point of this movie. They look incredible and they really sell that these are the actors in these jets while this is happening. They’re pulse pounding, heart-racing, and really make the movie worth seeing in the theatre.
Over-all its a fun ride and very much worth a watch. The only thing bringing it down for me is that it really requires having the prior nostalgia for the original movie to get the full experience of watching it. Other than that though it’s a great summer movie and I really can see why it is the highest grossing Tom Cruise movie and one of the highest grossing movies of all time. It really is worth a watch in the theatre, especially in IMAX if you can. Two Thumbs Up !