Top Gun: Maverick Reviews Are Online, And Critics Really Hyping The Intense Aerial Sequences


When critics had the chance to screen Top Gun: Maverick at CinemaCon last month, the first reactions were overwhelmingly positive. Tom Cruise knows his way around an action movie, and the sequel to his 1986 classic also seemed to provide plenty of heart to go along with the insane flight sequences. Now critics’ full reviews are in, and sure enough, they seem hyped about the wild ride this movie takes its audience on.

Tom Cruise returns for this sequel more than three decades later as test pilot Pete “Maverick” Mitchell, who has dodged advancement over the years, and now finds himself in charge of training a new group of recent Top Gun graduates for a special mission. Among this new group is Bradley “Rooster” Bradshaw (Miles Teller), the son of Maverick’s late friend Goose. Val Kilmer has also reprised his role from the original movie, Tom “Iceman” Kazansky, who is the commander of the U.S. Pacific Fleet. 

Let’s see what the critics are saying about this long-awaited blockbuster, starting with our CinemaBlend review of Top Gun: Maverick. Our own Eric Eisenberg gave the movie 4 stars out of 5, saying this film will take your breath away. He says the story is more compelling and exciting than its predecessor’s, and while audiences will feel like they’re on a ride for the whole movie, the third act brings cinematic fireworks:

Top Gun: Maverick is a ride as much as it is a film, but instead of being a roller coaster, the metaphor is a bit more literal: you regularly feel like you are a bug that has gone splat across the windshield of a jet fighter while it is flying at multiples of the speed of sound, and it’s an adrenaline kick that never loses its potency. On top of the cinematography being phenomenally immersive, the impeccable sound design makes you feel every sonic boom and engine roar in your lower intestine.

Peter Debruge of Variety calls the film a barrier-breaking sequel, saying the leading man deserves an Oscar for pulling off what the role requires of him. The flight scenes will have audiences feeling like they’re right there in the cockpit:

These days, videogame-styled blockbusters rely so heavily on CGI that it’s thrilling to see the impact of gravity on actual human beings, pancaked to their chairs by multiple G-forces. Sophisticated movie magic makes their performances seamless with the exterior airborne shots, while the commitment to filming practically-everything practically feels like the cutting-edge equivalent of Howard Hughes’ history-making Hell’s Angels. The result is the most immersive flight simulator audiences will have ever experienced, right down to the great Dolby roar of engines vibrating through their seats.

More than one critic has said this is a movie that audiences need right now, and Pete Hammond of Deadline says Top Gun: Maverick soars on a different level than the 1986 classic, not just for its special effects, but for its message that we all need a wingman:

Some wonder if Tom Cruise and the producers of Top Gun: Maverick waited too long to do a sequel. After all, it has been 36 years since Top Gun hit screens in 1986. Well, wonder no more. Not only is the timing right and execution of this long-gestating follow-up splendid, but it also actually tops the original in every way imaginable, from an all-knowing performance for the ages from Cruise to its highly emotional storyline, ‘take my breath away’ aerial sequences and just about anything else you want from a studio blockbuster.

It sounds like Top Gun: Maverick had this group feeling the need for speed, so if you’d like to start your summer off with a sonic boom, you can catch this Tom Cruise-led blockbuster in theaters on Friday, May 27. In the meantime, be sure to check out our 2022 Movie Release Schedule to start planning your next movie night.

More to come…

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