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Top Gun (1986)

PG | | Action, Drama, Romance | 16 May 1986 (USA)
0:50 | Trailer

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As students at the United States Navy's elite fighter weapons school compete to be best in the class, one daring young pilot learns a few things from a civilian instructor that are not taught in the classroom.


383 ( 209)
Won 1 Oscar. Another 10 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:


Code-named "Maverick", Pete Mitchell, the impetuous daredevil Navy-pilot ace, is accepted into Miramar's elite Fighter School, also known as "Top Gun". There, as the impulsive pilot competes with the best of the best, not only will he meet Charlie, the flying school's curvaceous astrophysics instructor, but also the brilliant and highly competitive fellow student, "Iceman", with whom right from the start, he will engage in a reckless contest. As Maverick is haunted by his father's mysterious death, will he be able to suppress his wild nature to win both the prestigious Top Gun Trophy and the girl? Written by Nick Riganas

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


...It's a solo mission ... Yeah! ...And I'm going with him... See more »


Action | Drama | Romance


PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:



Release Date:

16 May 1986 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Top Guns  »

Filming Locations:



Box Office


$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$8,193,052, 18 May 1986

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
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Did You Know?


Other real names of the pilots/RIOs that are not otherwise mentioned in the movie, but only by their callsigns are: Hollywood: Lieutenant Rick Neven; Wolfman: Lieutenant (JG) Leonard Wolfe; Slider: Lieutenant (JG) Ron Kerner; Cougar: Lieutenant Bill Cortell; Merlin: Lieutenant (JG) Sam Wills. See more »


After the final live dog fight with the MIGS, the Commander of the carrier comes into the pilots' locker room with a lit stub of a cigar to tell Maverick that he (Maverick) can choose his next assignment. During the scene the cigar becomes significantly larger than the first stub. When the Commander departs, the stub cigar reappears. See more »


[first lines]
Flight Captain: Good morning, Scott.
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Crazy Credits

The opening credits sequence features a detailed history of the Top Gun program before the title of the film appears on screen, with the remainder of the opening credits devoted to footage of planes being launched from and landing on an aircraft carrier. See more »


Referenced in Tosh.0: Season 2 Web Reflections (2010) See more »


Lead Me On
By Giorgio Moroder & Tom Whitlock
Performed by Teena Marie
Produced by Giorgio Moroder
Teena Marie courtesy of CBS Records
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Entertaining no brainer
3 November 2005 | by See all my reviews

Top Gun is a high quality, visually stunning film that does all it can to take your breath away. It is the excellently choreographed dog fights that remain in the mind longer than anything as they are high octane, dazzling bursts of excitement which bring the film to life. However, fighter jet sequences do not make a film and it is the plot where Top Gun has some occasional problems.

Parts of the story are overly cheesy and clichéd. The proud to be American theme is dire, repetitive and anyone who dislikes over patriotism in films will despise this. The story line involving Tom Cruise and Tom Skerrit approaches boredom and is the pinnacle of Top Gun's cheese. 'Cheese' is OK, as long as it is not serious and that is where that specific story line falls flat. The fun cheesy parts are some of the films best moments. The volleyball scene is truly a classic and the four actors involved are genuinely enjoying themselves. The relationship between Tom Cruise and Anthony Edwards is also very moving at times and the dynamic they have makes for great viewing.

The acting is what saves Top Gun from being Tinsel town garbage. Tom Cruise launched his career with this film. His cocky smile makes him perfect for this role and Cruise does fantastically at portraying a determined, passionate character. It is the emotional scenes where Cruise really sets himself apart from his peers. Cruise provides the few scenes where the audience are made to feel any emotion and he carries out his responsibility creditably. Anthony Edwards as Goose is also effective as the man who takes second spot to Cruise's Maverick. He is instantly popular with the audience with his wit, humour and charm. Val Kilmer and Rick Rossovich are great as the rivals. They play off each other really well and do a fantastic job to personify arrogance. Michael Ironside does what he does best and once again, manages to go through a whole film without smiling.

The story between Cruise and Kelly McGillis is very romantic and sensual. The heat between them is conveyed very well on screen and it is this that sets Top Gun above films such as Iron Eagle and Chuck Norris films.

Berlin's 'Take My Breath Away' is a song that still gets a good deal of airplay and suits this film to perfection; it's cheesy and its 80s. The music is very effective at setting the mood and complements the feel of the film.

Top Gun is a film that achieves its objectives, to entertain. If you're looking for intelligent writing or mass thought provocation, this film isn't for you. Top Gun is best suited to those who desire to switch off their brain and enjoy.

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