Well, well, well – who would have thought that in the epoch of the multiverse and endless flights into fantasy world(s) of Marvel & co, that a Top Gun sequel would emerge as the force of innovation that is getting bums on seats in their droves, hungry for an air-punching spectacle.
Indeed, in its fantastical flights, Top Gun: Maverick, is an avational masterwork, beautifully choreographed and aerodynamically awe-inspiring. The sheer velocity of the aeronautic skydiving battles are sequences of OG cinema inflicted with the sensory macro-dose of the multiplex.
Top Gun: Maverick does what it says on the tin, playing the hits on hard rotation: eyeball-exploding action, over-contrived masculinity and protagonists defying exceptionalism. Approached with an admittedly feigned interest and expecting an out-of-date dud, after 10 minutes I was sold.
An irresistible slice of nostalgic fun that gets the emotional beats just about right, it in no way reinvents the wheel; and all the better for it.
A plot so predictable it verges on the ridiculously profound. One thousand monkeys in a room with one thousand type-writers would write this one thousand times. A recipe older than time itself, take the blinkers off and strap in.
And then there’s Tom Cruise, like some cryogenically ageless Hollywood deity, it’s easy to forget that outside of the scientology and beyond the pale slices from his real life, he has worked with the greats from Kubrick to Paul Thomas Anderson.
Maverick is home territory for Cruise, just give in and question it later. ★ ★ ★ ★
- In cinemas now D: Joseph Kosinski US (2022) with Tom Cruise, Miles Teller and Jennifer Connelly