It’s time to feel the need for speed on 4K Ultra HD, with the arrival of ’80s Tom Cruise action classic Top Gun. Ah, but should you take it to bed, or lose it forever?
The story: Top Gun epitomises the 1980s and also changed the representation of the military in movies, not to mention cementing Cruise’s status as a superstar. As cocky flyboy Maverick, Tom struts about flashing his million dollar smile, croons You’ve Lost That Loving Feeling like he means it and hits on his instructor (Kelly McGillis), who teaches him a few things that you can’t learn in a classroom. It also has screaming jets, bromance, picture-postcard sunset shots, corny dialogue, and a soundtrack that just won’t quit.
“That was some of the best flying I’ve seen to date – right up to the part where you got killed.”
The 4K disc: A native 4K transfer is the order of the day here, and it’s a good one. Bolstered by the inclusion of Dolby Vision to get those dark bits darkened and white bits brightened, film grain is present and varies a little at times, but we didn’t find it intrusive at any point. Overall, for an ’80s film this is an impressive leap to 4K.
Upon buying a surround sound VHS player way back in the late 1980s, the first movie that this writer watched on it was Top Gun – just for the sound. It was wild then, but pales in comparison to this new Dolby Atmos mix (which you’d kind of hope some decades later). It’s not just the obvious stuff, as fighter jets duck and weave – or Goose and weave – around your head and aircraft carrier takeoffs make the room shake. That soundtrack, possibly the most 1980s of them all, benefits greatly. The orchestral score gets plenty of room to spread out, and when Danger Zone first fires up it’s quite a revelation. This is definitely one to use to show off your Dolby Atmos system to non-believers.
This is a re-release of Top Gun on 4K Ultra HD, removing the bonus standard Blu-ray, however extras on the 4K disc are a ~six-minute featurette, a five-part look back at 30 years of the movie and an audio commentary featuring producer Jerry Bruckheimer, director Tony Scott, co-screenwriter Jack Epps, Jr, and naval experts.
Release date: August 25, 2021
Format: 4K Ultra HD
Starring: Tom Cruise, Kelly McGillis, Val Kilmer
Want to know what to get next? Check out STACK‘s 4K Ultra HD specifications guide.