Hello moviegoers and film fanatics! Slick Dungeon here and I’m back to review another Oscar nominated film from 2022. This time we’ll be barrel rolling into the high flying sequel to Top Gun, Top Gun: Maverick. Do be warned there will be some spoilers in the review so if that sort of thing makes you want to eject from the aircraft, go watch the movie, come one back here, take off your aviator glasses, and read the review.
Tom Cruise is back in a big way in Top Gun: Maverick. This film continues the story from the original film with a Maverick who is much older, much wiser, and still a Captain. He’s stuck in the position because he tends to be a bit reckless and he feels like being a pilot is who he is.
The film starts off with Maverick testing an aircraft, trying to get it to hit mach 10. He’s doing this against orders but if he hits the mark, he saves the jobs of several people working with him. At least for now. Expecting to be disciplined. Maverick is instead called back to the “Top Gun” flight school where the original movie took place. There’s a nearly impossible mission (see what I did there?) and Maverick is needed to teach a young group of pilots not only how to complete the mission but how to survive it. Maverick also only gets this job because Iceman (Val Kilmer) from the first movie is now an Admiral and knows Maverick can handle the job.
Maverick is given the parameters of the mission and instantly sees all the challenges associated with it. It’s a big task full of the need for lots of cool looking flying stunts to get the job done.
In the group of top notch pilots is Rooster (Miles Teller), the son of Maverick’s now deceased wingman Goose. Rooster is none too pleased to be instructed by Maverick because Maverick delayed Rooster’s entrance into the Naval Academy.
The movie has a ton of action, lots of incredible looking flight stunts, a decent enough story and about as much Tom Cruise as any sane person can handle.
As far as a movie going experience, this was definitely an enjoyable film. A lot of it did feel like a rehash of the original story but there’s enough new here to keep it interesting. Was this one of the better movies released in 2022? Absolutely. Is this worthy of the best picture of 2022? I don’t think so.
I’m not knocking the movie. I really did enjoy it. There were some issues with it. The near impossibility of the need for this mission with these aircraft made it almost not believable but I can put that aside enough to have fun here. Also, the fact that drones are taking over much of manned flight is only barely touched on here and I think there could have been a bit more exploration of that topic. Jennifer Connelly has a decent role as Penny, Maverick’s love interest. But the audience is mostly here for the high flying stunts (or low flying in some cases).
It seemed to me there was a moment in the film where they could have put a nice end to the whole franchise but it would have involved Tom Cruise’s character dying and I think he has just a bit too much ego to let that happen. But again, this is a movie for fun more than anything, not necessarily something that should leave you in tears.
It’s a good movie but it’s not a great movie. I’d definitely argue the original is better and, well, more original, but there is absolutely no denying this film has incredible and exciting action. I don’t regret putting my money down for it but I’m not sure it truly earned its place on the Oscar nominee list.
If you love the first Top Gun film this is required viewing. If you like fast action films, this is a great watch. If you’re looking for a deep plot with lots of surprises, you’re in the wrong place. But if you want a good time, this movie will definitely give you that.
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