Top Gun: 9 Thoughts I Had While Rewatching The Original Movie


With Top Gun: Maverick currently take over the box office in such a dominant way It’s no surprise – even though Tom Cruise’s titular character is only used to second place – many moviegoers across the country have spent some time reconnecting with Tony Scott’s beloved original and all its 80s glory. Having not watched Superior gun in its entirety over the past 15-20 or so years, I’ve put on my nickname helmet and hopped right on this Navy-sponsored bandwagon with gusto. (The 1986 classic available to stream with a Paramount+ Subscription.) And, I was happy to find that the high-flying drama was almost as enjoyable today as when I’d watched it before, whether or not it involved the use of a VCR.

Of course, because I’m about two decades older than the last time I watched, and maybe five years more mature, my thoughts on Superior gun passed through a slightly different filter, though some of those thoughts were probably similar to ones I had years ago. Without further ado, let’s embark on this thought-filled highway towards the danger zone… well, maybe not everything the way into the danger zone, but somewhere on the outskirts.

Iceman shirtless in the locker room in Top Gun

(Image credit: Paramount+)

Val Kilmer’s Iceman is the real protagonist of Top Gun

In a film with a military vocation like Superior gun, the real enemy will always be “soldiers from another country”, but Val Kilmer’s Iceman is supposed to be seen as the central antagonist. On the one hand, it’s understandable, because Kilmer’s Tom Kazansky is so confident, with a toothy smile whose main purpose is to eat away at Mav’s thin skin.

But, that’s really about as far as his mean behavior goes, because otherwise Iceman just gives good advice and repeatedly calls out Maverick for being a danger to himself and his fellow pilots. Additionally, Iceman remained at the top of the leaderboard throughout the process, and in the film’s climactic sequence, he outmaneuvered five different enemy planes at once before Maverick “rescued” him. Kilmer’s pilot was robbed as badly as any poorly presented movie character. Fortunately, the sequel gives Iceman its due in a sensebut I’m still going to start a #ReleaseTheIcemanCut campaign.

Maverick in the cockpit of Top Gun

(Image credit: Paramount+)

I would never make it Top Gun if I had a million years of practice

Considering I’m sitting here writing this article rather than breaking sound barriers in taxpayer-funded aircraft, it’s probably obvious that I’m not wearing a patch-covered jacket that says decorated naval pilot, because I am not a decorated pilot in any capacity.

And, while I know that the tasks and responsibilities required in real life overshadow the entirety of what we see happening in Superior gun – even though Tom Cruise is all about learning the craft itself – the events of the movie alone were enough to confirm that my writing probably isn’t even good enough to make it through this program. Give me one Superior gun video game, though, and… well, that would take a long time, but I could probably manage, if it’s not SO hard.

Sweaty cougar in Top Gun

(Image credit: Paramount+)

Characters too often sweat to disturbing levels

Even during some of his peak moments of machismo, Superior gun is a pretty stressful movie that puts a lot of its characters in dire and sometimes deadly circumstances. I have to think the creative team felt the best way to show this distress without verbalizing it was to make it look like everyone had just escaped an angry thunderstorm.

James Tolkan as Commander Stinger in particular deserves some sort of ever-shiny reward for his efforts. It’s 100% more apparent during the scenes inside the aircraft carrier, where any visible skin implied an outbreak of dehydration was imminent. One of the first signs of swampy, towel-less things to come was John Stockwell’s Cougar, both in the cockpit and when spinning in its wings (as seen above). I know it’s not all real sweating mind you but specifically in the fictional narrative it’s pretty weird for people everywhere to sweat buckets off their necks without wiping anything but then no one suffers from the fact that her neck is all irritated by the damp collars.

Maverick and Goose sing in a bar in Top Gun

(Image credit: Paramount+)

Maverick’s bar serenade remains charming, despite all logic

Looking beyond the doubt of an entire bar singing about a woman in hopes that one of them will get some loot, and not thinking about how many times Mav and Goose have made this move in other places (probably much less tasty), Superior gunThe Righteous Brothers’ use of “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feeling” is still heartbreaking. For most of my life, this song instantly reminded me of Tom Cruise and Anthony Edwards, the band’s overly fast rendition only adding to the charm. I still think Charlie from Kelly McGillis should have been about 70% less involved since the jump, but maybe that’s just because I didn’t have a whole bar singing straight at me out of nowhere.

Smiling Maverick in Top Gun

(Image credit: Paramount+)

“Take My Breath Away” is both the best and the worst piece of song

As long as we’re talking about music, Superior gun also turned Berlin’s “Take My Breath Away” to the top of the list, as it was rather used iconically during the film’s “sex” scene, which was really the “mouth full tongue tapping” scene. Can’t argue how well it was done, so good start, everyone. Bu-uu-ut, this signature synth bassline quickly became a parody of itself whenever it slipped elsewhere. In the end, it tapped into the same synonymous vibe as the “boww-chicka-bowwow” guitar thump of 70s porn. But I always liked it every time? Moreover, to say nothing of Lady Gaga’s “Hold My Hand” serving as Top Gun: Maverickromantic hookI missed the synth during the Tom Cruise scenes with Jennifer Connelly’s Penny.

Maverick pretending not to hear Charlie in Top Gun

(Image credit: Paramount+)

Maverick can be a real jerk

I won’t directly echo the thought above that Iceman is a better Superior gun hero than Maverick, but I’m going to expand on the idea that Maverick is sometimes a total asshole. Watching the movie with my eleven-year-old daughter, I found myself wanting to say to her, “You do realize Charlie is making the wrong choices here playing into this selfish dude’s childish bullshit, don’t you?”

The number of times characters say “Damn!” because of Maverick’s actions would be more genuinely endearing in a movie where the protagonist was a winner among adversaries, instead of a narcissist among skilled professionals trying to stop him from destroying expensive planes and people’s lives. Tom Cruise’s smile goes a long way, though.

The song of the goose in sunglasses in Top Gun

(Image credit: Paramount+)

Goose’s peer pressure skills ultimately killed him as much as anything

Over the years, I had truly forgotten about Goose’s influence on Maverick prior to his tragic death and thought of him as more of a good-hearted innocent. I’m not blaming the victim here, but damn, Goose was absolutely guilty of goading Maverick and stoking his ego during their scenes together. Even the moments of Goose questioning her best friend quickly turned into “Git ’em, Mav!” rallying cries, including his last flight. If they hadn’t fed on each other’s growing intentions to show Iceman, things wouldn’t have gone so badly. Goose probably could have done more good than bad by talking common sense to Maverick once in a while, but nobody likes to talk about it, because Goose fucking rocks.

The Cmdr Viper in a baseball cap in Top Gun

(Image credit: Paramount+)

I wish Tom Skerritt characters were my dad

No matter who plays Tom Skerritt, from small-town sheriff to congressman to navy commander, this character will be known primarily as a rule enforcer, but with compassion to spare by the end of the game. the day. And no disrespect to my own father – RIP – but I feel like he would agree that a Tom Skerritt character could probably do as well, if not better, than him. Even when the actor is playing a really ruthless character, I still project empathy onto him, so that still counts.

Goose's dog tags in Top Gun

(Image credit: Paramount+)

Every bit of mourning in the name of Goose is justified

For all the billions of cinematic deaths that have taken place over the past century, it’s rare for characters to officially have time to grieve, at least in movies that aren’t specifically known for being heartbreak-heavy dramas. But, Superior gun thankfully, gets his co-lead right, and it’s legitimately surprising how much screen time (relatively speaking) is spent on Maverick disappointed that Goose is gone while dealing with the consequences.

Obviously, the goose of it all is at the heart of the sequel, with Miles Teller playing his son, Bradley “Rooster” Bradshaw, which only reinforces the focus on mourning his death in the original film. You know what’s best Superior gun is? If you stop watching it halfway through, Goose never dies.

Now that the original movie has been completely recontextualized, or something a little less dramatic, everyone can feel free to go see the majesty of Top Gun: Maverick in theaters everywhere in just about every type of format imaginable, and you can’t go wrong with a D-Box ticket in this case.


Comments are closed.