Top Gun

Top Gun (1986)

73 corrected entries

(15 votes)

Corrected entry: If Viper had flown with Maverick's father in Vietnam then he would have rushed up and slapped Maverick on the back at the first chance, rather than being aloof and only finally putting his mind at rest about what happened after Maverick crashes a plane and loses the edge. Also as whatever happened to Maverick's father occurred some fifteen years previously, Viper wouldn't have hesitated in telling his dead mate's son what happened even if for some strange reason it was still classified.

Correction: This isn't a film mistake - it's your opinion on how Viper should behave. Maybe he didn't like Maverick (or his father?) and wanted him to be uncomfortable.

Corrected entry: In real life Maverick would have been about 5 inches too short to get into the navy as height restrictions still applied in the mid 1980s.

Correction: Tom Cruise is 5'7". That average american man is only 5'10". I have a hard time believing that the Navy would have turned away everyone under 6'0" tall. That would have seriously limited their pool to choose from.

Corrected entry: While the Goose is falling to the water after having broken his neck and died, he puts his arms up to direct his parachute.

Correction: Goose is still alive after splashdown. He succumbs to his injuries on base.

Correction: I just finished watching this movie and i'm pretty sure that the person directing the parachute is supposed to be Maverick.

Corrected entry: At the end Maverick throws Goose's dogtags off the ship. American soldiers wear two dog tags. When killed, one tag goes to administration for paperwork purposes and the other is given to the family (if any). Goose's personal effects should have had only one tag and been mailed home to his wife, NOT given to Maverick. It is not military policy to let a deceased soldier's friends pick through his stuff after he dies, as we see Maverick do.

Grumpy Scot

Correction: It is common for service members to have multiple sets of dog tags so Maverick could certainly have a set of Goose's dog tags.

Correction: Going through a deceased service person's items is often handled by their closest friend or person in their chain of command. They do that to spare the family of embarrassment by accidentally sending things home that would upset them. In the movie, Goose's wife is waiting for the stuff, possibly because it's an all male BOQ.

Corrected entry: In a hostile situation, there is no way on Earth that carrier would only have had two fighters airborne, not to mention two aircrews that were not even part of their squadron.

Correction: There is a comment made in the control room that the catapult is broken and will take up to 10 minutes to repair. They tried to put more planes in the air, but were unable to do so.

Correction: If you spend enough time in the sun, your hair will be naturally lightened - known as sun bleaching. There's (thankfully) no scene in the movie that shows Iceman bleaching his hair.

Corrected entry: During the scene when Tom Cruise is considering his options to graduate with his class and looking over the Miramar runway as an F-14 passes by to land, it is shown with the tail hook extended down for landing on a ship.

jcmann01

Correction: The runway at Miramar is painted to simulate the deck of an aircraft carrier. Navy pilots would practice arresting hook landings all the time, as this pilot clearly was.

Corrected entry: The MiG-28s supposedly carried Exocet Anti-Ship missiles. The Exocet are French and are used by NATO countries, not the Soviets. Also, there would never be a "MiG-28" since Soviet aircraft numbers are always odd (MiG-19, MiG-21, MiG-25 etc). Plus, the Soviets used specialized anti-ship aircraft such as the Tu-22, not fighters, for such missions, and if the final dogfight took place far out in the ocean, where did the fighters come from? The Soviets did not have a carrier capable of launching fixed-wing aircraft at that time.

Correction: Nobody in the movie states that the "enemy" in the movie is the Soviet Union. In fact, the identity of the enemy nation is never stated. Secondly, the MiG 28 is a fictional aircraft, as has been pointed out in several other corrections; this was done out of the political reality of 1986. The producers would never have been able to get their hands on real MiGs. Finally, the enemy planes could have come from land OR a carrier. Again, the identity of the enemy is unknown, any more than the US carrier's proximity to shore is known.

Corrected entry: In the opening dogfight, Cougar says "I'm gonna break high and right, see if he's really alone". When Cougar breaks he is only armed with 2 sidewinders and 2 sparrows. Any F-14 on patrol would at least have 4 sparrows under the fuselage, but most likely would have the pallets and 4 phoenix missiles.

Correction: Not true. I flew Combat Air Patrols (DCA) missions over Iraq in the Tomcat A, and we flew with 1/1/1, meaning one each of Sidewinder, Sparrow, and Phoenix missiles, as well as a full gun drum. In six years of flying the Tomcat, I never heard of one flying with more than 2 Phoenix.

Corrected entry: During the dogfight with Jester, as both planes are going 'ballistic', from the ground view, the F-14 is in front. Aren't they pursuing?

Correction: Actually, they are pursuing. The scene is filmed from below and the F-14 is engaging "Jester" from a higher altitude giving the illusion of being above of the lower altitude F-5 E.

Corrected entry: In the scene where Maverick is in Top Gun flying against Jester. In one scene he says he's going to hit the brakes. He hits the brakes and goes up so it look like Jester should fly underneath. In the next shot you can see Jester fly over Maverick.

Correction: This is not a mistake, the aircraft is pulling a high alpha maneuver, in this case 'hitting the brakes' by rapidly orienting the aircraft in a different direction, using the body and wings to slow the aircraft down rapidly. The Russian SU-27 Flanker is famous for this (search cobra maneuver) and the F-14 was capable of doing it as well. The aircraft continues in level flight even though the nose is oriented upwards (high angle of attack). As much as Top Gun makes mistakes with reference to aviation, this is not one of them.

Correction: Exocet's are anti-ship missiles. They are not effective against other aircraft. The MiG's were not yet within firing range of the ship, but were involved in a dogfight, for which the air-to-air Sidewinder missile is the more effective weapon. Most aircraft are able to carry multiple munitions.

Corrected entry: In the last battle. Mav is ordered to launch his alert five. While hooking up to the catapult we see a man holding his left hand flat and placing two fingers sideways into it. That means you are plugging in an external power source. You would not do that during launch.

Correction: You obviously haven't stood many alert 5's. Alert 5 or Alert 7 means that the aircraft must be able to be launched 5 (or 7) minutes from the time the order is given. This means that the crew has to be strapped into the aircraft, on the catapult and hooked up to external power in order to have the aircraft's systems checked and ready for immediate launch. Inertial Navigation Systems (INS) take several minutes to align. If they were not already aligned when the launch order was given, the crew would not be ready to launch on time. Once the order is given to launch, all you should have to do is start the motors, disconnect external power, wipe out the flight controls and hit the road. The man in this shot is requesting to disconnect the external power.

Corrected entry: During the opening sequence of "cat shots" off the carrier deck, an F-14 is hooked into a catapult. As it's being launched, the camera switches to a deck member ducking as it goes by in the background. However, the plane going by is actually an A-6 Intruder.

Correction: This is a montage of shots randomly depicting the daily routine of carrier duty on the deck. The shots are not meant to be a continuous stream of real time. No mistake.

johnrosa

Corrected entry: The film makes several references to a 'MiG 28' when in fact all MiG aircraft are odd-numbered. No 'Mig 28" ever did or ever will exist.

Correction: And "Maverick", "Goose" and "Iceman" don't exist either. The jet was actually an American F5, not a MIG at all, and since it doesn't look like any real MIG, the makers created a ficticious MIG model for the ficticious pilots to ficticiously fight. It's a fantasy, not a documentary. The MIG-28 designation was intentional, not a "mistake".

johnrosa

Corrected entry: In the final dogfight, Hollywood is being pursued by a MiG that has radar lock on him. A few seconds later the camera shot changes to the cockpit of the MiG showing his radar locking in on Hollywood's plane (again), but didn't he already have radar lock on him?

Correction: That's the point. Hollywood supposedly broke radar lock, and the MiG had to reacquire him as the target.

Corrected entry: In the scene after Maverick goes to Viper's house to ask for "his options", he is shown sitting on his motorcycle at the end of a runway watching a plane coming in to land. The plane has its tailhook down, which should only be down while landing on the deck of a carrier. This obviously was footage of a carrier landing being reused. And in the very next shot it shows him watching the plane accelerating away with afterburners glowing, which contradicts the earlier shot of the plane landing. (01:25:00)

Correction: Where do you think they practice the tailhook manoeuvre? If the first time that a pilot learned to use the tailhook was on a carrier, many a pilot might die flying off the end of it into the ocean. Remember that this is a "training" program for pilots as well. Also, the afterburners are bringing him up to speed, possibly to circle back and repeat the manoeuvre.

Jazetopher

Corrected entry: In the whole movie the pilots are controlling the throttle with their right hand. But in reality, the throttle is placed on the left hand side and the right hand is used to control the stick.

Correction: At no time do the pilots control the throttle & joystick with the opposite hands, it only looks like it when they shoot the scene from the front looking back.

Corrected entry: Maverick is seen riding his motorcycle down the runway while jets go whipping by and he is not wearing a helmet. Wearing a helmet on a naval base is mandatory, even in states which permit riders to go helmetless on the public streets.

Correction: But we already know that Maverick is a rebel- he does a flyby after 'killing' Jester even though he was ordered not to.

At that time, there was no mandatory helmet rule in DOD.

Corrected entry: Any pilot that disobeyed a direction by air traffic control and conducted a "fly by" would immediately lose their flying status, yet Maverick does it twice.

Correction: Viper made it clear that he was cutting Maverick a break the first time he did a fly by, by not losing his flying status. The second time was at the end of the movie, so we don't see if he lost his flying status or not, although it is doubtful that they would take it away from him since he was a hero.

Top Gun mistake picture

Continuity mistake: When "Charlie" is first introduced to the class, she struts down the aisle in heels. When she follows Maverick into the building, you can briefly see that she is wearing flats to compensate for Maverick's short stature.

More mistakes in Top Gun

Iceman: The plaque for the alternates is down in the ladies room.

More quotes from Top Gun

Trivia: Charlie's date in her first bar scene is the real Viper from the actual Top Gun school, called Pete Pettigrew. He was the consultant on the film.

More trivia for Top Gun

Question: This is probably a stupid question, but I know nothing at all about how these kind of aircrafts are flown. What exactly is the purpose of the guy sitting in the back of the plane? All they seem to do in the film is look in all directions for enemy aircrafts.

Answer: These aircraft are extremely complex; the presence of the backseater, variously known officially as the Weapon Systems Operator or Radar Intercept Officer, allows the pilot to focus on the immediate needs of flying the plane, as his backseater can take on many of the other tasks required. They serve as navigators, tacticians, bombardiers, weapons systems operators and, of course, as we see in the film, an extra set of eyes; they use their discretion in passing information to the pilot, ensuring that the pilot has only data that's important to the situation and isn't swamped by trivia. Without the distraction of having to fly the plane, they can often be better placed to coordinate between multiple planes, leading to situations where the backseater can be placed in command of the mission.

Tailkinker Premium member

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