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Top Gun: Maverick


JohnC
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Just returned from this. About 30 seconds in when I realised… 

 

Spoiler

… that they were doing the full intro, fonts, colour, music all the same but new I started welling up and got the chills. Fuck. Yes.


There is so much to like here even if…

 

Spoiler

They brazenly ripped the mission straight out of Iron Eagle 2!!! Like wtf!!! And I don’t care!


The way they handle his relationships, time passing. He’s still Maverick but there is vulnerability there. They nailed it. Connolly was excellent, they both had great chemistry and it all just felt… right.

 

Spoiler

Again I’m welling up just watching him texting with Ice. I loved that they were friends and that Ice kept bailing him out. Just perfect. More tears narrowly avoided in Val’s scene which was mega. Seeing him like that then the black and white photo of them was so damn sad. 

 

Maybe it had one or two shot recreations too much. But again, I don’t care. The action.. it’s all been said. It’s great.

 

Coming out of 2020 / 2021 this is exactly the wholesome, feel good nostalgia cheese I needed. They nailed the brief and knocked it out park. 
 

My one criticism is about that

 

Spoiler

Music they played on the flight into the sunset. What the hell?! Where is mighty wings?! Ah who cares!!!

 

I’m really at a loss as to how the could have made a better Top Gun sequel. It was very much worth the wait.

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2 hours ago, probotector said:

It’s sad that the Lady Gaga song ruined the ending.

 

It’s such a try hard 2000s pop idol crap

 

The song makes more sense if you listen to the soundtrack album, as it’s essentially a vocal version of one of the main musical themes/motifs. 

 

Although I think the One Republic song that’s on the album is a lot worse. Like, it’s awful. But then it wouldn’t be Top Gun without some songs that will sound dated within 2 years.

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27 minutes ago, probotector said:

Except it was shit as soon as it started.


Still an amazing film but the song stood out as poor.

 

 

Is this

 

 

Any better/worse/cheesier/more of its time 

 

than this

 

 

Top Gun Maverick certainly feels like the soundtrack is less of a “Original Music from the Movie” album than the original, which lets be honest, apart from the main theme by Harold Faltermeyer and Danger Zone by Kenny Loggins, is totally 80s cheese!

 

image.thumb.jpeg.caac90916f4e4e3ad0ce137afc30733d.jpeg

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As soon as they did the briefing and they…

 

Spoiler

Showed the F14s I was like so that’s how they are going to do it. Nice! He gets shot down and escapes in one. But I’m a dumbass and never saw Rooster also getting shot down and him taking the back seat.  
 

I was getting scared about half way through they were going to do the unthinkable and kill him off at the end. So glad they didn’t.

 

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Saw this today. My wife and I both agreed that it took far too long for the film to get in the air after the intro section.

 

Apart from that we both thought it was utterly amazing.  Much better than the original  which I feel has aged terribly. 
 

Talking about the intro section, surely no aircraft is close to Mach 5, let alone 10? Also, is all the stuff about drones replacing fighter pilots true? Is it a profession that won’t exist in 25 years? 
 

I’ve been a fan of Kosinski since Tron. Incredibly gifted visual director. 

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10 minutes ago, sandman said:

Also, is all the stuff about drones replacing fighter pilots true? Is it a profession that won’t exist in 25 years? 


25 years? More like 10 I recon. I highly doubt there will be lots of 6th gen fighters around if any. 

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10 minutes ago, sandman said:

Talking about the intro section, surely no aircraft is close to Mach 5, let alone 10?

No normal jet plane. But this was an experimental scramjet plane. If they get going properly, they can theoretically get to top speeds a fair bit higher than mach 10.

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6 minutes ago, JohnC said:

No normal jet plane. But this was an experimental scramjet plane. If they get going properly, they can theoretically get to top speeds a fair bit higher than mach 10.

Wow!

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5 minutes ago, sandman said:

Wow!

Having looked up some stuff, the fastest so far in the real world is the X-43, which reached mach 9.6. It's unmanned. All of this kind of stuff it still in experimental stages, so who knows where we'll end up.

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24 minutes ago, sandman said:

Talking about the intro section, surely no aircraft is close to Mach 5, let alone 10? Also, is all the stuff about drones replacing fighter pilots true? Is it a profession that won’t exist in 25 years? 
 


The X43 drone hit those speeds. 18 years ago, and Lockheed Martin are working on an SR71 successor that might end up looking a lot like the Darkstar from the film (which they helped design). 

 

As for manned fighter jets, there will definitely be a shift to more capable drones and less pilots up there. Boeing are working on drones that are designed to fly alongside manned planes. They can do recon, electronic warfare, act as a target for enemy fire, or shoot back. 

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@sandmanI worked on the structure design of a fighter-sized ‘unmanned aerial combat vehicle’ nearly 15 years ago that was designed to replace piloted aircraft in sorties they deemed too big a risk to pilot safety. Still not in active service, but it has done a lot of test flights.

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That's a really interesting read @Gigawatt and I see parallels in how AI is being used in my career area - in radiotherapy - basically they're looking at how AI can be used to automate/expedite the more mundane from a brainpower point of view tasks, but that actually take a lot of time.  It's not about using AI to replace humans but rather to free us up to work on the most complicated bits where we can't quire rely on AI in the same way.

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Saw this today and absolutely loved it. Overall quite predictable at points, but it didn't matter when it was all so well done!

 

In particular

Spoiler

Val Kilmer turning up as Iceman was fantastic - I was totally unaware he would be returning until I saw his name during the intro and the way they handled the character was just fantastic. A little bit heartbreaking, but the few minutes he was on-screen were sheer brilliance!

 

 

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11 minutes ago, mexos said:

Any idea when this will come out to buy on Apple TV etc? I'm in day 1.

They've not said when, but it will be at least 45 days after cinema release. 45 days is their new theatrical window, but some movies could be longer, and there's some hints that this could be one of those.

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Maverick was fine. Planes go pew pew.

 

And most people side with Val Kilmer from Top Gun 1 whose basic safety concerns were entirely warranted. I'm fairly sure this has been the pop culture take for about 20 years now. 

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32 minutes ago, K said:

In an absolutely unprecedented move, my partner enjoyed Top Gun 2 so much that we're going to see it again tonight, and watched Top Gun 1 last night in preparation. It's interesting to compare the two films, as while they're very similar in a lot of respects, they're also quite different films - Top Gun Maverick is a plot-heavy, men-and-women-on-a-mission film, while the original film has no plot to speak of, and is basically a melodrama about a moody fighter pilot coming to terms with something or other. Maverick's emotional journey is a bit hazy - not that this stops the film from being highly enjoyable, of course.

 

The film is basically a romance, although the romance scenes between Kelly McGillis and Tom Cruise have a slightly odd vibe, because McGillis seems like a sophisticated, mature woman, and Cruise seems like a child. In the early sequence, with Cruise and his buddies hitting the slightly creepy pick-up bar in their crisp white uniforms, Maverick and Goose come across like students; they seem incredibly young and immature. Kelly McGillis seems like she'd eat Cruise for breakfast, and the scenes where Maverick tries to romance her reminded me of the bits in Rushmore where Jason Schwartzman's eerily precocious child tries to put the moves on Olivia Williams, and is very firmly put in his place.

 

The action scenes in the original are beautiful to look at, but visually incomprehensible. it's mostly jets going whoosh, and people in flight helmets turning to look behind them. If you played a drinking game where you took a shot every time someone in a plane looked behind them, you'd be in intensive care by the halfway mark. It's impossible to follow the action just from what's on screen, you have to listen to the characters narrate what they're doing. It's inherently difficult to show complex dogfights on screen given the lack of scenery in the sky to help fix your bearings, but the sequel really is an absolute textbook example of clarity - they make it clear what's happening, what the current problem is, and how they resolve it. In the original film, I was baffled by whole sequences, like the one in the mid-film dogfight where Goose gets killed. Iceman is on the tail of someone, but needs another ten seconds to actually shoot them for some reason. The climactic dogfight is similarly chaotic - it makes Quantum of Solace look like Yojimbo. You sort of have to do the same thing you do in a JJ Abrams film and just go with the emotional impetus of the scene rather than apply any kind of logic to it, but it really shows up what an expertly-crafted film the sequel is.

 

The other thing I noticed: Iceman actually seems alright. He's a bit arrogant at the start, but for most of the film he comes across as being pretty reasonable in the face of Maverick being absolutely unbearable. His concerns over Maverick's competence are valid, he's fairly magnanimous when he graduates top of the class, and he shows concern over Maverick's mental health after Goose cops it. In the scene where he tries to console Maverick just after Goose dies, you can see him really thinking about his words, and he seems sincere. I thought that bit was a short but quite effective bit of acting from Val Kilmer. Iceman seems hard done-by in popular culture; I would be his wingman any time.


It's often overlooked that Top Gun is basically a Republican Ronald Reagan wet dream. Tom Cruises character is an entitled asshole with no moral compass who still wins the fight and gets the girl. His character is irredeemable and he is very much not someone to root for, but the west was so enraptured in white privilege none of us realised how we were being indoctrinated. 

His name is maverick ffs.

You watch it back now with embarrassment. 

The new film is one hell of a ride, but on examination it quickly falls apart. The mission is to destroy a box and then unquestioningly kill some faceless pilots. I loved it, but I needed a shower afterwards. Its grim grim stuff.

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Hangman has a similar vibe to Iceman, but again it's more about professionalism and naturally the kind of ego you have when you're legitimately among the best of the best. Neither of them are Bad Guys, but I think Iceman got some misguided short shrift for a while simply because he was pitted against the lead. These people have to push themselves and each other to the limit, but I found it especially refreshing in Maverick that it was never a significant plot device.

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Hangman was explicitly much more of a knob than Iceman was, I thought. He was portrayed as a danger to other pilots, and as not caring about their safety. Obviously, he comes good in the end.

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6 hours ago, K said:

Hangman was explicitly much more of a knob than Iceman was, I thought. He was portrayed as a danger to other pilots, and as not caring about their safety. Obviously, he comes good in the end.


Iceman is the hero of Top Gun. Maverick is a knob. Watch the original film again objectively. 

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