From a plot by Peter Craig and Justin Marks, Top Gun: Maverick is a 2022 American action drama film directed by Joseph Kosinski and written by Ehren Kruger, Eric Warren Singer, and Christopher McQuarrie. The film stars Tom Cruise, Miles Teller, Jennifer Connelly, Jon Hamm, Glen Powell, Monica Barbaro, Lewis Pullman, Ed Harris, and Val Kilmer as Captain Pete “Maverick” Mitchell, reprising his role from the 1986 original. It follows Maverick’s return to the United States Navy Strike Fighter Tactics Instructor programme (also known as “Top Gun”), where he must confront his past while training a group of younger aviators, including the son of Maverick’s deceased best friend Goose, 36 years after the events of the previous film.
In 2010, Paramount Pictures stated that a sequel to Top Gun was in the works. Cruise and Kilmer, as well as producer Jerry Bruckheimer and director Tony Scott, were recruited to reprise their roles from the first film. A draught of the screenplay was completed by mid-2012, but Scott committed suicide, and the film’s pre-production was placed on hold. Scott’s memory is honoured in this film. Kosinski was recruited in June 2017 and a fresh draught of the screenplay was written. Principal photography took conducted in California, Washington, D.C., and Maryland from May 2018 to April 2019. The film was shot using 6K full-frame cameras that were approved by IMAX. Its release date was originally set for July 12, 2019, but was postponed due to difficulties shooting multiple intricate action sequences, and then due to a technical issue.
Top Gun: Maverick premiered at CinemaCon on April 28, 2022, and was released theatrically on May 27, 2022, by Paramount Pictures in IMAX, 4DX, ScreenX, and Dolby Cinema in the United States. After its theatrical run, it will be available on Paramount+. The film was met with significant critical acclaim, with many critics praising it as being superior than its predecessor. The movie has a worldwide total of $569.6 million, making it the fourth highest-grossing film of 2022.
Throughout his lengthy career, Tom Cruise has always been a quintessential alpha-male. In the 1986 original, the blockbuster that launched Cruise to superstardom, a 24-year-old Cruise in his signature patch-emblazoned jacket and Aviators offered us some classic cinematic moments. Whether he’s riding his superbike against fighter planes, playing seductive shirtless beach volleyball, or using his legendary charm, confidence, and reckless (flying) talent to make a very stubborn girl fall for him. Top Gun, directed by Tom Cruise, was a heady combination of brash heroics, heartfelt camaraderie, sizzling romance, and competitiveness.
35-years-later, when superhero movies are dominating the big screens, Tom Cruise, 59, dares to bring old school heroism back in a worthy sequel that’s high on redemption and thrill. While he retains the oomph of the original, the franchise ages gracefully as wisdom and consequences of death challenge the carefree courage of youth.
Though an inquiry clears Maverick of responsibility for his friend Goose’s death, the burden of guilt lies heavy on him and training Rooster offers Maverick a chance for redemption. Ageing deprives one the privilege of making rash decisions and it’s interesting to see a 60 something hero tackling the ghosts of his past, face professional stagnation and the reality of choosing to be a loner.
Val Kilmer in a special appearance (as Iceman) takes you back in time. Jennifer Connelly as Maverick’s on-off love interest Penny is interesting, but Kelly McGillis and her push-pull chemistry with Cruise is sorely missed. Despite the hype, Top Gun: Maverick’s theme song ‘Hold My Hand’ (by Lady Gaga) doesn’t match up to the sensual love anthem of decades — Take My Breath Away. A one-man show, Cruise ensures the attention is on him and him alone, understandably so.
The film isn’t flawless and has its share of far fetched moments but it is everything you’d expect from a Top Gun sequel. It has just the right amount of nostalgia, drama and nail biting action to make it worthy of theatrical viewing. Go for it!