Overview – Devil-may-care navy pilot Pete Mitchell (Tom Cruise) is sent to Miramar Naval Air Station for advanced training. Here he vies with Tom Kasansky (Val Kilmer) for the coveted “Top Gun” award. When not so occupied, Mitchell carries on a romance with civilian consultant Charlotte Blackwood (Kelly McGillis). Shaken up by the death of a friend, Mitchell loses the Top Gun honor to Kasansky. Worried that he may have lost his nerve, Mitchell is given a chance to redeem himself during a tense international crisis involving a crippled US vessel and a flock of predatory enemy planes. The story wasn’t new in 1986, but Top Gun scored with audiences on the strength of its visuals, especially the vertigo-inducing aerial sequences. The film made more money than any other film in 1986 and even spawned a 1989 takeoff, Hot Shots. An Academy Award went to the Giogio Moroder-Tom Whitlock song “Take My Breath Away.” ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi
Despite the oddity of releasing Top Gun in IMAX 3D on its 27th Anniversary and not its 30th in a few years, I remembered that when I was nine I missed it in theaters. Eventually I rented it at a local store called JTL Video because Blockbuster did not exist yet. Ah the 80’s were a glorious time, before the world became one big corporation devouring other corporations to make an even bigger corporation. The threat of a nuclear war with Russia was still very real, especially to a precocious kid like me. That is why I always turned to the movies as an escape. The movies I watched in those years put me at ease knowing that the good guys always win and the U, S of A would come out on top. If ever there was a film that defined that period of uncertainty and rah-rah “tear down that wall” enthusiasm it was the iconic piece of Americana that is Top Gun.