A new promo for Top Gun: Maverick dropped during the Super Bowl, and it's becoming abundantly clear that the much-anticipated (and fretted about) sequel to the 1986 aviation classic feels the need ... the need for speed.
If you take a close look at the film's most recent promos there's a clear visual trend emerging: Tight shots of the actors from inside the cockpit, and a metric ton of heavy breathing as they're slammed about by seven to eight Gs.
In other words, it's basically this meme, but in an F/A-18 Super Hornet.
In a behind-the-scenes trailer that dropped in December, we got a look at the paces the actors were put through in order to play Navy fighter pilots, with Tom Cruise, who's reprising his role as (now Captain) Pete 'Maverick' Mitchell, remarking that "you can't act that, the distortion in the face" as the clip cuts to his fellow actors trying not to lose their lunch as they zip through the air.
"They're pulling 7.5-8 Gs," he added. "That's 1,600 pounds of force."
The most recent trailer follows this theme. As some of the film's plot points are revealed — the top brass still hates Mav, Goose's son is now a pilot and blames him for his father's death, and nobody knows why he's still in the Navy — they're all laid over the sound of heavy breathing as Maverick pulls a hard turn during a training exercise. It actually reminded me of this video clip from the cockpit of an F-16 during the Gulf War, because you hear that same ragged breathing as the pilot expertly dodges six incoming surface-to-air missiles.
If Top Gun: Maverick is trying to convey that level of tension, then I'll be honest: I will happily endure a farcical plot and an absurd volley ball match just to see that captured on screen.