Top Gun: Maverick

Director: Joseph Kosinski
Year Released: 2022
Rating: 2.0

Highly decorated test pilot Pete "Maverick" Mitchell (Tom Cruise) is summoned by former nemesis-turned-pal Iceman (Val Kilmer) to be the main instructor for the resurrected Top Gun program and teach a group of twelve candidates - which include "Rooster" Bradshaw (Miles Teller), son of Pete's late friend Goose - to engage in a dangerous seek-and-destroy mission.  As a massive nostalgia bomb for Generation X, it raked in well over a billion dollars at the box office by slightly retooling the original script - Rooster and Hangman (Glen Powell) snap at each other like Cruise and Kilmer did back in 1986 - and 60-year-old Tom (officially a Boomer) gets told once too often that he's "too old" ... and yet proves the upstarts wrong time and again.  It relies too heavily on past events for any kind of dramatic weight (Goose died in the first, it's Kilmer's turn here), and I think it's curious how it tries to de-politicize itself: the goal is to obliterate a "uranium enrichment plant" (surrounded by surface-to-air missiles) yet refuses to give a clue as to who built it, where it is or what's going on in the world (the enemy fighters are clad in black and don't speak).  Still, the last third is pure entertainment and meticulously directed by Kosinski and his crew: they do owe a bit of gratitude towards George Lucas' Star Wars which featured a certain aerial attack on the Death Star.