Top Gun: Maverick soared over the competition in this past weekends box office. The long-awaited sequel… 37 years waiting… has brought in $151 million domestically and $248 million worldwide.
This is the second-best Memorial Day weekend opening, just behind 2007’s Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End which debuted at $153 million. It’s also the best opening for a Tom Cruise starring vehicle. Reports say that 11.1 million moviegoers will have seen the film by the end of the weekend, which races past the originals open weekend of 2 million people.
Top Gun: Maverick sees the return of Tom Cruise’s self-assured test pilot, who had been brought in to train a group of young fighter pilots, one of which is the son of Maverick’s deceased best friend Nick “Goose” Bradshaw. While Cruise is the only main player returning for the movie, Val Kilmer also makes a small reprisal of his role as Iceman, with the rest of the new-to-franchise cast including Miles Teller, Jennifer Connelly, Jon Hamm, Glen Powell, Lewis Pullman, Ed Harris and Monica Barbaro.
Christian Toto of Hollywood in Toto had this to say of the legacy sequel:
The ageless star [Cruise] is in full control of his film destiny, and he clearly helped “Maverick” avoid most, if not all, of the culture war booby traps.
No hand wringing over military might or extended emasculation of its rugged hero, for starters. No lectures on America’s imperfect past or gender inequality.
And, suffice to say, “Top Gun: Maverick” isn’t woke in the slightest. It is, though, a testament to American excellence and the ability to achieve a goal no matter the odds.
Reaction to the film has also been positive as Rotten Tomatoes has it at 97% from critics and 99% from audiences. Of the 319 reviews they’ve listed, only 11 are ‘rotten’ and when you look at their top critics, 69 of 70 ranked it as ‘fresh’.
John Nolte of Breitbart explains why, unlike recent installments in the 007 or Star Wars franchises, this legacy sequel is being embraced by critics and moviegoers alike.
[…] it didn’t do what James Bond did—turn itself into a mewling little pajama boy gerbil of a movie. It didn’t do what Star Wars did and pervert a romantic-adventure series into a shrill Womyn’s Studies lecture. Instead, Top Gun chose to respect human nature and remain what it was, what worked, and what normal people love. The audience sensed that, and now it’s over-performing […]
The rest of the box office rounds out with Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness at 21.1 million for the four-day weekend, The Bob’s Burgers Movie bowing for $15 million it’s opening weekend, Downton Abbey: A New Era grabbing $7.5 million and the animated The Bad Guys taking in $6.1 million.