Maverick”, Tom Cruise or the revenge of the old cuckoo clock



Thirty-six years after Tony Scott’s inaugural box, Top Gun returns, carried by its duo of shocking producers Jerry Bruckheimer and Don Simpson, under the patronage of the incorruptible Tom Cruise, and with them an idea almost put aside of the Hollywood show fueling aerial combat and patriotic duty. From such a flashback, the objective is clear: to restore the flashy, virile, advertising and conquering imagery of the 1980s, the first part of which marked a sort of uninhibited paroxysm. Aged but still operational test pilot Pete “Maverick” Mitchell (Cruise) agrees to return to Top Gun School, an elite US Army base, this time as a trainer, to train the cream of young pilots for a mission in enemy territory (which one?) as abstract as it is absurd, like coming out of a broken flight simulator.

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Where one could expect a handover, this new version orchestrates above all the coronation of the star Cruise by an audience of young actors summoned to recognize his supremacy in action. To his recruits, the instructor teaches how to fly old cuckoo clocks, the F-18 and F-14 from the Cold War, the only ones able to accomplish the mission. Moral: the best soups are made in old pots – which also applies to the film itself, an old-fashioned blockbuster with a strong belief in the martial domination of the (sculpted) body over the camera (tapered). But it’s even more on the nostalgia that capitalizes maverickconstantly recalling, on a fetishistic register, the scenes, places and characters of his model (including a passage that draws tears with a Val Kilmer visibly weakened by illness), erected here as an unsurpassable reference, and mechanically duplicated without an ounce of creativity.

American film by Joseph Kosinski. With Tom Cruise, Miles Teller, Jennifer Connelly, Jon Hamm, Ed Harris (2 h 11).

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