After more than 30 years of service as one of the Navy's top aviators, Pete "Maverick" Mitchell is where he belongs, pushing the envelope as a courageous test pilot and dodging the advancement in rank that would ground him. Training a detachment of graduates for a special assignment, Maverick must confront the ghosts of his past and his deepest fears, culminating in a mission that demands the ultimate sacrifice from those who choose to fly it.
Director: Joseph Kosinski
Cast: Tom Cruise; Miles Teller; Jennifer Connelly; Jon Hamm; Glen Powell; Lewis Pullman; Ed Harris; Val Kilmer
Release Date: May 24, 2022
Genre: Action, Drama
Rated PG-13 for sequences of intense action, and some strong language
Runtime: 2h 11m
Top Gun: Maverick is the rare decades delayed sequel that somehow manages to recapture the magic of the original while standing on its own merits. Joseph Kosinski's film works on multiple levels as it echoes classic scenes from the original while allowing his movie star to shine in his iconic performances. It’s a fascinating bit of alchemy that allows him to bring back that feeling of a 80's blockbuster while delivering some insanely updated aerial acrobatics which may leave some people with a serious sense of vertigo. The script is lean with a straightforward story that doesn't dig too deep into many of the characters even though it does manage to touch on themes of legacy and age. Some of the dialogue does come off as stilted and old fashion in spots but it’s easy to forgive. Tom Cruise eases back into his iconic role with such gleeful ease that you can feel his deep affection for the character. He carries the film with tangible energy that comes through the screen as he leads the newcomers of fresh faced up actors. Miles Teller and Glen Powell get the biggest spotlights in supporting turns with Powell echoing Kilmer's Iceman throughout. Kilmer himself gets a surprisingly touching sequence with Cruise that works well within the film and as a tribute to both characters and actors. It's the type of moment that plenty of revived franchises have attempted but never quite nailed, it's a testament to the cast and crew to pull off such a satisfying sequel.