It’s far from a joke to say that critics and hardcore cinephiles loved “Top Gun: Maverick” just as much as your average Joe. Let’s put this in perspective: “Maverick” screened at the Cannes Film Festival in 2022 as an Official Selection, and it received a massive five-minute standing ovation. Additionally, the festival also held a retrospective for Tom Cruise and his work, particularly the original “Top Gun,” to complement the screening (which was not a premiere, actually; the film premiered at CinemaCon in April 2022).
Plus, Cannes made sure to show their love for the film wherever and whenever they could — including a massive display complete with a huge screen that looped clips from the film on the main road where the festival is held. I saw the display myself, and it was pretty magical to say the least. The point is that a major arthouse festival in the film world made a ton of room for “Maverick,” and it made that room during the festival’s monumental 75th anniversary year. It’s a pretty major spotlight for a film that doesn’t necessarily fall in line with other arthouse-type projects you might see there. That passion for the film bled out into the real world, with film buffs and normies alike flocking to see “Maverick” any chance they got.
The film managed to gross nearly $1.5 billion globally from its theatrical run, and it absolutely got a lot of folks back into the movie theaters who had otherwise taken a pause at the height of the pandemic. So it seems that maybe that Steven Spielberg fella was onto something after all.