The Flight of The Last Movie Star!
While you’ll often hear people saying they’re going to watch the new Marvel movie, the new Star Wars movie, the new Harry Potter movie or the new James Bond movie, you’ll also hear people saying they’re going to watch the new Tom Cruise movie!
People are literally going to the cinema to see the actor and character that is Tom Cruise!
While such sentiments were commonplace back in the 80’s, you’d be going to see a new Stallone movie, a new Schwarzenegger movie, Van Damme movie or indeed Tom Cruise movie, Cruise seems to be the only one left holding the baton for classic Hollywood glitz and glam these days.
And this is precisely what people mean when they say Tom Cruise is one of the remaining true Hollywood stars!
He lives and breathes to deliver big screen spectacle, he’s still flying himself to movie premieres in helicopters while his peers are satisfied with being chauffeur driven, he’s the guy hanging off the side of a plane and dangling from the Burj Khalifa while his peers are dangling above foam pads in front of a blue or green screen!
It’s this passion for cinema and level of spectacle, as Top Gun: Maverick proves, that gets filmgoers excited enough to leave the comfort of streaming at home and visit the cinema with their loved ones, grab a bucket of popcorn, a giant bottle of soda and just have a really good time!
I’m not going to lie, I’m not the biggest fan of the original Top Gun! I was only 6 years old when it came out and when I saw it, there was far too much sappy romance and sweaty topless volleyball scenes for my liking!
I was enjoying other ’86 classics such as Transformers: The Movie, Aliens, Big Trouble in Little China, Crocodile Dundee, The Golden Child, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off and Labyrinth to name just a few.
Just goes to show what a great decade the 80’s were for movies!
I thought perhaps I was too young to appreciate the original when it was released, so I rewatched the original before heading out to see Top Gun: Maverick.
Nah, I think I was pretty much on point in my assessment! The original, while a decent example of 80’s cinema, pales in comparison to other titles from the decade.
While not essential, revisiting the classic definitely set me up to appreciate the new movie more. Suddenly characters that I didn’t care that much for had me reaching for the box of tissues in this sequel!
‘Invited’ back to train the new class of Top Gun for what is essentially a suicide mission, Maverick must contend with dealing with punks like his arrogant former self who think they know everything while his superiors want him grounded for good!
It’s amusing seeing the tables turned with Maverick going from being sat in the class to now being the one giving the class.
There’s also a lot of heart to the tale, Maverick knows he’s let a lot of people down and that this is probably his last chance to set the record straight, especially when it comes to Rooster (Miles Teller), the son of Goose, his co-pilot from the first movie and Penny Benjamin (Jennifer Connelly), the admiral’s daughter briefly mentioned at the start of the first movie.
I must admit, they nailed the casting with Miles Teller, he literally looks like the son of Goose!
While the heart and history of the characters root us into the story, it’s the action set pieces which make this movie what it is! Breathtaking!
Make no mistake, you should try to watch Maverick on the biggest screen you can find!
As everyone is no doubt aware, Cruise ensured they were really flying in planes instead of having everything done in CGI and it really shows!
When the CGI wizards couldn’t even remove Cavill’s moustache properly in Justice League, it’s clear that there are still significant limitations to what can be done with CGI.
Thanks to flying in real F-18’s, you can almost taste the speed as you see the faces of the cast being sucked into the back of their skulls due to the immense G-forces they were experiencing while performing crazy aerobatic maneuvers, it’s intense stuff sure to leave your palms sweaty!
With Top Gun: Maverick, Cruise and director, Joseph Kosinski, have managed to capture and immortalize stuff on film that quite possibly no one will ever be able to do again!
This is Hollywood, Tom Cruise and movie magic at its finest and a reminder why the big screen experience exists and still matters to this day!
“It’s time to return to the Danger Zone!”
Highly recommended, go and check it out!
Dr. Bobby Stryker