Top Gun: Maverick

“If you think, you’re dead.”

Feat. Danger Zone by Kenny Loggins

UNCHARTED TERRITORY. In 2022 UFO’s are real, and movies are dead. Or I should say, they were. Until? A career best box office smash for the planet’s biggest movie star. Is he an alien?🤷🏽 These new Roaring 20s keep getting stranger.

Top Gun’s superiority is known the moment its ace first appears on screen to forward the movie, breaking the fourth wall. Cruise employs this unconventional tactic to inform us that no less than *10* years of love went into the production. And it shows. The film is as technically flawless and riveting as the mythical flight mission it portrays. Plan on peeing your pants in the first five minutes.

Despite my infatuation with this movie, a sobering thought crosses my mind. And it’s bullshit that in 2022 we are close enough to the precipice that I feel I need to ask this question in an otherwise joyous movie review, but what if in 10 more years we look back and see this movie as a military recruiting masterpiece? The film is so impressive it would have us believe that the coolest people on Earth are actually U.S. Navy pilots – that in order to win your father or brother’s love you must kill for your country. Combine these toxic notions with what seems like an ever growing number of people with low self-esteem and a death wish and you have quite the volatile situation. A WW3 type of situation. Get my drift? On this topic Justin Chang of the Los Angeles Times says it is, “best not to think too long or hard about … the fetishization of U.S. military might” in this film. I am inclined to agree. This movie has far too much heart to be propaganda (Or is that exactly why it is?🤔).

No. You see, after all, Maverick is a metaphor – for individual determination, moral integrity, and audacity. The world needs more mavericks, but of the Martin Luther King or Atticus Finch variety, not fighter pilots. It’s just that the camera eye has been particularly fond of the aeronautical niche community since its inception. The airplane and motion picture were invented just 15 years apart. 🎥1888, ✈️1903). Both created by daring individuals. Both exquisite forms of escape. The marriage of flight and film makes a ton of sense, actually.

And century’s worth of movies has proven The Pilots’ charm equally cinemagenic as their marvelous flying machines. Something about that boyish smile behind a pair of tinted aviators lowers our inhibitions, and tells us that whatever we’re doing “is okay.” It’s the assurance every moviegoer secretly craves.

In 2022 there’s no sweeter sound than the screaming of a supersonic angel of death. In the age of anxiety, on the brink of annihilation, Jerry Bruckheimer and the forever 21-year-old myth of a man, Tom Cruise drop Top Gun Maverick, a bomb of a movie that fully and unequivocally lives up to its name, invites us not to think, but to lose ourselves to the cinematic experience. So bring the sativa and snacks, wear an adult diaper, and enjoy the ride, man.

Dr. Strangelove (Or how I learned to love the bomb)

E.F.

17 thoughts on “Top Gun: Maverick

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  1. I was already practicing law in 1986 when Top Gun was released. A client of mine would call me up and pretend he was Maverick, making all the radio sounds like “psst” into the telephone.

    He was always in trouble and clearly needed a wingman. He picked me, and gave me my call sign:

    Maddog

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Call sign: “Maddog” That’s pretty Badass… The only potential callsigns I’ve been given thus far in life are J-money (Ha), and Jack. Both plays off my first name, Jason. 🤔 “Jack”… it’s not an “ace,” but it’s a card.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Calling Jumpin’ Jack…Jumpin’ Jack come in over! ….
    I’m kinda numbed to the big “Top Gun” movie experience as I was part of a family that had REAL air force members in it. I heard first hand stories of what these incredible aircraft were for and what they could do. I also heard the tragedies that surround them too as one of my relatives was a Firefighter on a military airbase. I got to go to airshows and displays (some of which were private) and got up close and personal to some of these machines (back in the 80’s).
    Don’t get me wrong, I do still like watching these sort of films but there’s always that niggling sensation at the back of my mind that I’ve seen/experienced close to the real thing. These films do have to be careful though not to venture into “Jingoism” and “Chest Beating” about “Our military is better than your military so you gotta be in it to be somebody!” or things could develop badly (but I guess movies have already been exploited in this way before…even in films like Basil Rathbone’s Sherlock Holmes films that were a bit Jingoistic).

    Anyhoo, I hope your six is clear and you are doing well….For Tyeth Over and out!

    Liked by 4 people

    1. 🎶”I was BORN, in a class five hurricane…”🎶

      For Tyeth this is “Jumpin’ Jack” come in, over. Well, I guess it’s official!.. I’ll be fittest pilot on base! At least in the cardio department😅 And I’ll play the Stones on the tape deck “I’m jumpin’ jack flash it’s a gas gas gas!”

      Jingoism – That’s the word I was looking for!

      Jumpin’ Jack Over and out.

      Liked by 3 people

  3. An excellent article, bro. That tells us that the movies are just for fun (and for more, of course)! I would also prefer Martin Luther King or Atticus Finch (Gregory Peck was brilliant!) in the real-life, but in the cinemas, bring the Sativa and snacks, wear an adult diaper, and enjoy the ride! 😅🤗👍🖖

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I haven’t got around watching this, but you bring up an important aspect of recruiting, which I believe was a big part of the original.
    During my time in Finland I’ve became friends with two military trained pilots. One is a jet fighter instructor and the other joined the border guard as a helicopter pilot. I have to say they are nice guys and both (subconsciously to some degree) model themselves after these guys as far as the image goes.
    I went to one air show and got inside a decommissioned MIG 29 and saw up close the Eurofighter. Sadly I also witnessed a psychological effect of death when a head instructor of my friend died in an accidental crash during an exercise mission due to bad weather conditions.
    You know in Finland the military pilots officially retire at age 45, so most then switch to private sector to continue flying. I found that quite interesting.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I have a friend from high school who is an Air Force pilot and he also (probably subconsciously) models his himself after these guys too. “Goose” from the original, specifically – he even has the mustache now haha. I talked to him just this past October at a wedding. He flew a C-17 into Kabul, Afghanistan during the U.S. evacuation from the country 2 years ago! He said it was “pretty tense” … I was shocked to learn this. U.S. airforce pilots must commit to 10 years of service after flight school, and must retire at 60.

      That’s so cool you met these Finnish pilot friends, and getting to see the MIG 29 up close!

      Liked by 2 people

  5. Nice review! We were surprised to hear how well this movie’s doing and got pulled into the excitement and will probably go this weekend, lol

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Great review!! I agree that this is a movie to lose ourselves to the cinematic experience. It’s rare to see a sequel that actually surpasses the original on so many levels.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Thanks for sharing this one. I’m yet to see it but I feel as though there’s almost no way this movie won’t ‘inspire’ some to join the military. Any movie/ story can inspire a person to do just about anything – good or bad, as long as they connect to the subject enough.

    Liked by 1 person

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