Top Gun: Maverick, review. A sequel that surpasses the original

It’s hard to remember much of 1986’s ‘Top Gun’ beyond the soundtrack (Take my breath away), Tom Scott’s shots and the relationship between Kelly McGillis and Tom Cruise. During the 36 years that separate both films, everything has been diluted except Tom Cruise. The actor, who saw his popularity take off definitively with that film, has become the standard bearer of cinema as a show. He has recently stated that he will never release his work on a platform because his films are made for the cinema screen, the only space capable of giving the true dimension of his philosophy.

Because Top Gun Maverick has little to do with the original, that was a consumer work destined to whitewash the image of a North American army before a society that was still traumatized by the Vietnam War. And this is pure spectacle.

Now there is no clear political message or an exaltation of American values, in addition, special care has been taken to decontextualize a possible enemy, neither a flag nor an emblem or even a physical feature to which to place a label. Although due to the situation, one could speak of a mixture between Iran (plutonium enrichment factory) and North Korea.

The six of the gallows

For lovers of war movies, Top Gun Maverick will be a familiar product. It moves in the keys that Robert Aldrich imposed on his magnificent gallows twelve (1967): Impossible mission with little chance of success, motley crew with obvious rivalries, training to the limit to reach their potential, and finally executing the plan from which one always has to deviate. Namely, A solid but predictable script.

So if the film is differential it is by Tom Cruise, who does not have the imposing physical presence of Lee Marven, but does have a magnetism with the camera that links him to the greats of cinema (Robert Redford, Paul Newman…). The New Yorker, who is close to sixty (59), seems to have made a pact with the devil and makes the viewer doubt if so many years have really passed between one film and another. He shows off and boasts of an enviable physique and does not hesitate to take off his shirt to show it.

Top Gun; Maverick Tom Cruise

Cruise knows better than anyone what the viewer wants and he gives it to them: in the same film he is capable of showing himself as a tormented character, an irreducible rebel, a mature seducer and a man of honour. All with that carefree air that he connects with the public from the close-up in which he appears. It is a film by and for Tom Cruise.

The actor has pledged once again shooting the action scenes himself and it is something that is appreciated in a world where special effects could save you from the risks you take. All aerial shots are made inside a jet and it shows when it comes to giving credibility to the numerous aerial scenes of Top Gun: Maverick.

If Tom Scott made the first one a visual delight, Joseph Kosinski it is not far behind. The director builds a film that does not let up, in which he pays homage to some of the scenes from the original, but he does it in a personal and intelligent way. He also has no qualms about borrowing from Lucas one of the most iconic scenes in cinema, the attack on the Death Star, and turns the planes into an extension of the characters, conveying to viewers the feelings of stress and fear that They suffer in combat. The use of the camera in these scenes is amazing.

Top Gun; Maverick Tom Cruise Jennifer Connelly

A luxury cast

If Tom Cruise is the Sun King, the truth is that he does so accompanied by an excellent cast of stars. Among all of them, it is worth highlighting ValKilmer, Marvel’s antagonist in Top Gun. His voice problems stemming from throat cancer have been resolved in a smart and emotional way. He is a tribute to the enfant terrible of Hollywood.

This time Maverick’s partner, in the absence of Charlie (Kelly McGillis), is Jennifer Connelly. The actress performs, as usual, a great job to the point of making one wonder if he wasn’t also present in the first film. But no, she wasn’t.

Ed Harris, in the role of a tough naval admiral, Milles Tiller, Monica Barbaro, Glen Powell and John Hamm round out the cast. All the actors who are part of the flight team they were subjected to hard physical work, as Cruise refused to use CGI, they had to endure extreme shooting conditions inside the planes. An excellent physical tone that they show off in a football scene located on the beach, which pays homage to the iconic volleyball scene of the original.

A tall soundtrack

For the soundtrack of the film Cruise has had one of the greatest talents in cinema, Hans Zimmer, and with the composer of Top Gun, Harold Faltermeyer. Lady Gaga For his part, he gives voice to the main theme, Hold my Hand.

Top Gun; Maverick Tom Cruise

Conclusions

Top Gun: Maverick is a film that enhances the already legendary figure of Tom Cruise, where he shows off all the talents that have brought him to the top and, despite his unoriginal plot, manages to keep the viewer glued to their seat during its 137 minutes of duration. As entertainment right now it is unrivaled and it is a film to enjoy on the big screen, it has probably the best aerial combat sequences ever shot. And if anyone doubts whether it is plausible, just say that the P-51 that appears in a couple of scenes belongs to Tom Cruise himself, who flies it often.

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Top Gun: Maverick, review. A sequel that surpasses the original


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