Nostalgic sequel returns ‘Top Gun’ fans to theaters


Scott Garfield / Paramount Pictures / TNS

Jennifer Connelly, left, as Penny Benjamin and Tom Cruise as Capt. Pete “Maverick” Mitchell in “Top Gun: Maverick,” which drew millions to movie theaters.

Mary Segall, Opinion Editor

Can you hear the roar of the F-A18E Super Hornets as the legendary tune of “Danger Zone” fills the movie theatre? You can in the new “Top Gun: Maverick.” 

This film takes place after Maverick has over thirty years of service in the Navy as a fighter pilot. We know Maverick is a little unorthodox with his flying tactics, but that is what makes him the best; he graduated from Top Gun as number two in his class. 

Maverick gets called to service Top Gun as an instructor to prepare the best pilots for real world combat. Watch Maverick teach these young pilots a thing or two while seeing a ghost from his past. 

How will Maverick handle instructing the son of his best friend, Goose, when the son is not particularly happy to see Maverick? Will these two learn how to work together or will they butt heads over Goose’s death? Will Maverick whip these pilots into shape and show them an old dog can still have some tricks up his sleeve or will he be shown up by these new and younger pilots? 

Some old favorites make an appearance, along with newcomers. Tom Cruise reprises his old role, and Val Kilmer is also back. The newcomers to the “Top Gun” family include Miles Teller playing Goose’s son, Rooster, Lewis Pullman as Bob, Kara Wang as Halo and Monica Barbara as Phoenix. Miles Teller does an outstanding job playing Goose’s son. The mannerisms and aviator shades with that iconic mustache that Goose rocked in the first film were all reprised by Rooster. 

The soundtrack brought me right back to the first movie with all the same songs. It was a small detail to the first movie, but really elevated the nostalgia level.  

Let us get to the F-A18E Super Hornets! That is where all the excitement and action is, right? The clarity of the roar of the engine is just so captivating; it is like you are there! There is something that stirs when you hear that familiar “highway to the danger zone” as planes are swarming off a carrier. I have no idea how they even survived the stunts which were used in this video.  

This nostalgic sequel to an American classic got a score of 10/10 according to the IMDb official page for “Top Gun: Maverick.” I have to say I agree with them wholeheartedly. There is so much action with the planes, comedy between the old and new characters and nostalgia with the soundtrack. I felt happy walking out of that theater. See it and let me know if you feel the same on your return to the “danger zone.”