Top GunParamount Pictures (Blu-ray)
Top Gun takes a look at the danger and excitement that awaits every pilot at the Navy's prestigious fighter weapons school. Tom Cruise is superb as Pete "Maverick" Mitchell, a daring young flyer whose out to become the best of the best. And Kelly McGillis sizzles as the civilian instructor who teaches Maverick a few things you can't learn in a classroom.
Please, like you've never seen this before. It became a phenomenon and launched Cruise's career into the stratosphere when it was released. Navy recruiting went out the roof as well, and being a Navy man myself, I never hear the end of all the lines from this film. It's a lot of fun, and a great piece of HT demo material.
Top Gun has always been an interesting video presentation to me. The opening sequence is brutal with the fog and titles being mixed and I don’t think I’ve ever seen it look “good”. Once you get past that though the ride is a bit smoother and this new Blu-ray encode seems to get more right than wrong. The image looks a bit more natural this time around and fine detail in close ups can be incredible at times. The HD DVD looked pretty good but I think this one takes it up a notch in terms of both detail and consistency. There are still some print issues that pop up from time to time but it is hardly bothersome. Overall this transfer has great dimension and a very natural film look and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it over previous versions.
The HD DVD release of Top Gun featured a lossless Dolby TrueHD 5.1 mix but this time they’ve also added a DTS-HD Master Audio 6.1 mix. I would venture to say that the two soundtracks are from completely different masters because there are huge differences between the two. The DTS mix has a much richer bottom end that adds a lot to the intensity of the soundtrack. But there are also a lot of differences in the imaging across channels. The Dolby mix doesn’t sound nearly as seamless and concentration per channel is quite different when switching from one to the other. This was the show off disc back in its laserdisc days and this new DTS lossless mix is one that will still impress. While it may not have quite the spit and polish of some of the newer sound designs out there, it still gets the job done.
Unlike the disappointing HD DVD release, Paramount has included quite a few supplements this time around. A feature commentary with the director, producer and insiders is included along with an extensive documentary on making the film. Storyboard comparisons and a look at the real Top Gun are also included. For fans of the soundtrack there is a collection of four music videos for the more popular tracks. TV spots, trailers and an interview with Tom Cruise round out the package.
Paramount has delivered a solid Blu-ray package with this one. Rather than recycle the HD DVD from before we get an improved audio track and a nice compliment of supplements making this an easy upgrade and the definitive version for fans. Highly recommended!