Mistakes in top cinema/rental movies

Top Gun: Maverick picture

Continuity mistake: The film's premise is attacking a target that GPS jamming protects. As the attack starts, it is becomes apparent that no such protection is in place. GPS jamming is a form of radio frequency jamming. It would severely affect all radio communications. But planes and their command carrier are in constant, undeterred radio contact. Moreover, the enemy uses radar-guided SA-3 Goa SAM units that would have been unable to operate properly in jamming conditions.


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Suggested correction: GPS jamming is transmitting radio signals on GPS frequencies, not all radio frequencies. It might prevent GPS being used for navigation or weapon aiming, but it would have little or no effect on radios or radar which use different frequency bands. At the risk of oversimplifying, it's like you could shine a bright flashlight to blind people trying to see you, but it wouldn't stop them using infra red (or hearing or smell or whatever else).

This correction is a mistake in itself. Without wide-spectrum jamming, the U.S. Navy never needed to use NAVFLIR for payload guidance. The site would be open to attacks from other radio-guided weapons, such as NAVCON guidance, standoff missile, and operator-guided bombs, especially since they were hard-pressed to guide their payload through a small window and ensure the survivability of their pilots.


In the movie they say GPS jamming, not wide spectrum jamming. GPS could be affected, but radar etc would still work. Like you say, the site would still be open to other attacks, and be able to use various defences.

It doesn't really matter. Maverick was told that GPS is jammed, so he threw all kinds of attack plans based on radio guidance out of the window, behaving as if there was a full-spectrum jamming in place. And his commanding officers didn't mind. Either the film's mistake is in its depiction of U.S. Navy's understanding of aerial warfare or its depictions of aerial warfare itself. There is huge mistake in there, it is only a matter of where.


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