Top Gun

Top Gun (1986)

127 mistakes

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.

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Continuity mistake: At the end, a victorious Maverick is hoisted on the shoulders of the guys. As he goes up, he isn't wearing sunglasses. His head goes out of the shot, and when he comes down, he's wearing a pair.

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Continuity mistake: During the whole elevator scene with Mav and Charlie, her earrings change.

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Revealing mistake: Near the end of the movie, when Maverick's plane is about to be launched, there is a quick closeup of an F14's nose gear, which is quite obviously not hooked up to a catapult or anything else.

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Continuity mistake: In a scene soon after Cruise's partner dies, when he's flying with his new partner, you can see his call sign on his helmet, but when they get on the ground and he's talking to Cruise, all the letters on his helmet are removed.

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Continuity mistake: In the final dog fight scene, Maverick is flying with Merlin as his co-pilot. Merlin's helmet is purple and can be seen many times behind Maverick. In one scene though, the helmet behind Maverick's is orange, which is Sundown's colour.

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Other mistake: In the last dogfight, we see four MIGs circling around Iceman, trying to get him down. A few moments after, Maverick gets to the scene, and the same shot is being used.

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Visible crew/equipment: When Goose and Maverick are in the sea after their plane crashes, look carefully, there's a thin black rope latching onto Maverick and the camera crew's boat. Look carefully and you will see it.

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Continuity mistake: The Navy allowed only one live missile shot for the filming of the movie. Maybe that is why we see so many missiles fired from an empty rack.

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Continuity mistake: Throughout the film Maverick's plane has the number "114" on it. However, at the end when he is waiting on deck, the number has changed to "104". This is actually Iceman's plane, which has already taken off. When Maverick launches, the number has changed back to "114" again.

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Continuity mistake: In the volleyball scene, Maverick can clearly be seen looking at his watch because he has a hot date with Kelly McGillis, however while they are actually playing, it is easily noticeable that he is no longer wearing his watch.

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Continuity mistake: In the elevator scene with Maverick and Charlie, Tom Cruise's hair keeps changing.

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Continuity mistake: In the final battle scene, which takes place way out over the water, in some of the F-14 shots, mountains can be seen in the background.

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Continuity mistake: When Maverick rides his motorcycle up the hill to Charlie's house, the sun is just about to set in the background. He stays at Charlie's a while, they drink some wine, then he leaves. As he is leaving, the sun is still setting in the background.

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Revealing mistake: In every in-flight cockpit scene a brass hand wheel is visible on the right side of the headbox of the seat. The only time this hand-wheel is installed on the seat is to disconnect the seat from the aircraft and to disarm the seat. Therefore, the plane and actors in those scenes were on the ground with a moving camera because there is no way that an F-14 would be allowed to fly with "dry" seats.

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Continuity mistake: When we are first introduced to Maverick and Goose, their Tomcat crosses the screen, right to left, in close-up, slowly. It's nose is marked 203. Then we see the other Tomcat flying with them, and it is number 114, and its crew is Cougar and Merlin. But all the shots after this place Maverick and Goose in 114.

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johnrosa

Visible crew/equipment: In the scene after Maverick and Goose were told that they would be going to Top Gun the next scene shows Maverick on the runway riding his motorcycle as planes fly by. If you have your DVD settings on full screen you won't notice this but on wide screen you will. You can see the motorcycle that he is riding is strapped down to a trailer with 2 blue tie-down straps. Also, if you listen and watch closely you can tell that Maverick is not shifting and giving gas to the motorcycle at the right time. The only reason I know this is because I have been riding for over 10 years. If you give a sport-bike like that gas, it goes. He gave gas and it never even moves on the screen. Hard to do when you are strapped down to a trailer.

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Factual error: In all sequences where Maverick "puts on the brakes", he is shown pushing the throttle quadrant forward and pulling the stick back. This would put him in a full-afterburner climb, but you don't really stop and it doesn't work in a medium speed tail chase (which is easier to film). The air brake does effectively nothing on the F-14 because it is too small, and not deployable at full power.

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Visible crew/equipment: When Charlie walks down to the front of the class in the hanger, Jester is the only one at the front. Look at the reflection of Maverick's glasses, and the reflection shows lots of people standing in front of him.

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Factual error: Every time they show a close up of Maverick moving the throttle (going to burner, hitting the brakes, etc...) he is doing it backwards. He pulls back for burner and forward to slow down. In real life, it is just the opposite.

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Continuity mistake: In the dogfight where Cougar freaks out, when Maverick and Goose fly upside-down to give the MIG the birdie, the names of each pilot are not only upside down, but they are mirrored too. If you look at the names upside down, you can't read them.

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Factual error: Before "classes" begin, the pilots are told that they would be flying against planes that are faster than their F-14's. The F-14's top airspeed is over 500 mph faster than the F-5's, and more than DOUBLE that of the A-4.

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Continuity mistake: Before the final dogfight the horizontal stabilizer (back wings) on Mav's jet say YYY, afterwards they say XXX.

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Continuity mistake: When the instructors are out on the flight line discussing Maverick's loss of confidence, in each shot Viper's sunglasses can be seen to alternate between Randolph (square type) and then Ray Ban (aviator style).

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Continuity mistake: After the final dogfight, how did the drop tanks get back onto the planes before they landed? They sure weren't there during the dogfight.

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Visible crew/equipment: A boom mic is visible in Viper's office in the top right as Jester and Viper chat following Maverick leaving the room.

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logan crews

Continuity mistake: When Maverick leaves Charlie's house after their first date, there is a For Rent sign in front of her house. It appears to be the same shot of Maverick leaving her house towards the end of the film when she's actually put the For Rent sign up and moved.

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Factual error: No part of the Indian Ocean could be described as 'enemy territory' for US ships in 1986.

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Jacob La Cour

Continuity mistake: At Charlie's, she and Mav are having dinner and he asks for the wine. Throughout the entire scene the bottle of wine is rotating.

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Deliberate mistake: In the shot where the F-14 and F5 canopies are only 3-feet apart, you can see that the writing on the side of MAVs F-14 is backwards. Also, if the F-14 was inverted, with the sun more-or-less above, its cockpit would be in shadow, not with sunlight on the nose, as seen.

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Continuity mistake: The weapons armament on the F-14's keeps changing from one cut to another.

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Factual error: This is the most basic mistake of all, but probably only obvious to those who fly in the Navy. Almost every written reference to "TOP GUN" is wrong. TOPGUN is one word, all caps, always has been.

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Factual error: Just as Mav goes into the flat spin, you hear a voice over while looking at the rear of his F-14 (you can see the AB), you hear "Engine 1 is out" and you see the right engine flame out... this is engine 2, engine 1 is the left engine.

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Factual error: The final dogfight scene has a huge error when Hollywood's jet is hit with a missile and he ejects. The next scene shows him manually deploying a small pilot chute to open his main parachute. After seat/man seperation, the main chute automatically deploys depending on altitude and airspeed. He would still be connected to his ejection seat until his chute deploys. Having to manually throw a "pilot chute" to the wind would leave too much for human error.

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Factual error: In the first flying scene where Goose says he has got contact with the enemy on his radar, the display shown is sweeping in a full circle. The AWG-9 radar of the F-14 is mounted to the front of the airplane and can only scan 60° left and right of the Tomcat's centre.

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Continuity mistake: During the second dogfight, Iceman shuts down one of his engines, but when they fly past the carrier while returning, there are two lines of smoke coming out of his plane.

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Factual error: In the beginning of the movie when Maverick inverts and gets cozy (canopy to canopy) with the MIG pilot and Goose is taking pictures; could never have happened. First off the Tails of the F-14 are nearly 9 feet tall and the canopies are a mere three feet apart, so this would have resulted in a collision. Second the suction of the air between these two airframes even at stall speed of 120 mph would have cause a violent collision.

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James Rowell

Continuity mistake: The class at Top Gun was made up of the current best pilot/RIO air crews which had not previously attended the school, from various squadrons. At graduation, out of all the pilots in the Navy, including all the pilots from Maverick's squadron still on the carrier (some of which would have already graduated from Top Gun), Maverick, Iceman and Wolfman have to rush back to Maverick's aircraft carrier because they are the only pilots available that can go against the MiGs?

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Factual error: During the briefing before the final scene, the Captain says, "The Migs carry the Exocet missile. They can fire that missile from a hundred miles away." Yes they could fire the Exocet from a hundred miles away, but the Exocet's maximum range at the time of this movie was around 40 miles. Plus the Exocet is a French missile and would not be on a Soviet Union fighter.

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Factual error: In nearly every cockpit scene, regardless of fighter airframe, you can see that half or more of the lights on the caution lights panel on the lower right-hand side of the cockpit are lit. These lights are the illuminated names of all the systems that are not currently operating, ergo if the "Engine 1" light is lit, then Engine 1 is not running. If over half of the lights are lit (as in the cockpit scenes) then the pilots must be flying without half of their systems running, including engines, hydraulics, and radar. None of these lights should be on in flight. This makes it obvious that the scenes were shot on the ground using external power.

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Factual error: All the scenes with actors in the cockpit were shot in the front cockpit. Pay attention to the canopy frame behind the RIO. This would also explain a large gaffe from the movie - Merlin taps on the fuel quantity indicator and exclaims "C'mon Cougar, we gotta land this thing, we are way low on gas." The particular fuel quantity indicator shown being tapped by 'Merlin' the RIO, the one with the vertical tapes, is present only in the pilot cockpit. The F-14A rear cockpit has only a small fuel totalizer.

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Factual error: When Top Gun first came out, everybody in our squadron made a big joke of the "Deadly Blue Tubes." This refers to the sidewinder missiles that were supposedly launched from the Tomcats. Those who are familiar with aircraft weapons, would know that the blue tube is a sidewinder simulator. If you were to launch this from the aircraft, all it could do is drop like a rock.

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Factual error: There is no "Top Gun Trophy." Pilots either complete the course or they don't.

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Continuity mistake: In the first dogfight, when Cougar freaks out he removes his face mask. When Maverick takes-off again to guide him down the shot shows Cougar and Merlin's plane from the side where Cougar is again wearing his mask. Then it cuts back to a face shot of Cougar and his mask is off again.

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Deliberate mistake: During the final dogfight, the same shots of missiles flying through the air are used several times.

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David Mercier

Deliberate mistake: Charlie is chasing Maverick in her car to tell him how she feels. Maverick races down the road on his motorcycle, then two cars start to move out of an intersecting road and Charlie narrowly misses them. In the next shot, Maverick starts yelling at Charlie about her 'reckless' driving, but behind them, you see the highway, with no traffic lights or signals. Charlie actually had right of way.

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Continuity mistake: Take notice of everyone's hands during the action sequences. No one is wearing gloves. As standard issue for military pilots, the gloves are made of Nomex and provide protection from fire and allow for a better grip when things get a little hot and heavy.

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Continuity mistake: Maverick is shown wearing a black wristwatch, but on the closeup shots of his hand on the throttle, the watch is silver.

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Continuity mistake: If you notice Charlie's (Kelly McGillis) car, the DoD base's name sticker is blue (on her car, it is in the lower left corner). Blue is reserved for Officers. It should be green (for civilian employees).

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Continuity mistake: When the four pilots are playing volleyball, they have no sand sticking to them even though they are shirtless, sweating, and sometimes diving in the sand.

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Factual error: Every time one of the F-14 pilots fires a missile, he thumbs the selector switch on the stick to the SP/PH (Sparrow/Phoenix) position, then pulls the trigger. In every case, it's a Sidewinder that leaves the rail, even though it isn't selected, and would not have had time to "home" anyway.

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Factual error: After the dogfight, when CAG meets Maverick in the squadron locker room, Goose is written on the locker next to Maverick's. They would not have left this on there after his death.

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Upvote valid corrections to help move entries into the corrections section.

Suggested correction: Navy jets use trigger for all Air to Air weapons (missiles and guns). Some Air Force aircraft do use pickle (red button) to fire missiles. In the Tomcat the trigger was used.

Factual error: When Goose takes the photo of the MIG's cockpit, the type of Polaroid camera he is using has an acoustic auto-focus system. It will not focus beyond clear glass or plastic because the ultrasonic pulse bounces off the glass and not off whatever is behind it. Therefore the photo would be focused on Goose's own canopy and the MIG's cockpit instruments (of interest to Charlie) would be very blurry. Perhaps that is why the photo is not shown. Also: Goose proclaims the photo great immediately after it comes out of the camera. In fact it takes a minute or so to develop and become visible.

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origamibob

Factual error: When Mav explains to Charlie his dogfight with the MiG-28, Charlie askes him: "You were in a 4G inverted dive with a MiG-28?", "Yes Mam" he replies. Imagine the two aircraft. The F-14 was inverted (the back of the F-14 was "looking" at the ground, and it was pulling 4 positive G's), and the MiG-28 was flying horizontally (belly of the MiG-28 was "looking" at the ground) so it should have been pulling 4 negative G's to keep their distance constant, or more to increase it (otherwise they'd have collided). For the MiG to pull 4 negative g's is almost impossible for two reasons: 1) the negative g-limits of the aircraft are somewhere in the area of 3.5, and 2) the Russian pilot's eyes would have popped out of his head at this g-force. Even the most modern and agile fighter aircraft of the world (like the F-16 and the Eurofighter) have a negative g-limit of 3.5 while their positive limit is at 9, mainly due to human body constraints.

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Continuity mistake: After the final dog fight where everybody is happily back on the aircraft carrier, Iceman exclaims: You can be my wingman anytime, and Maverick replies: Bullshit - you can be mine. Then they hug, and during that hug Iceman in someway manages to put his sunglasses on, from one cut to another

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Factual error: In his first flight at TOPGUN, Maverick and Jester are seen flying at low level, yet there is a 10,000 foot hard deck, so they must be flying over mountains that height above sea level, in which case the hard deck to be any use would have to be higher.

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Continuity mistake: When Maverick is inverted on top of the MIG, they are flying (almost) level - not in a dive at -4 G.

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Jacob La Cour

Audio problem: Reference the dialogue in the hangar where Mav/Goose and Charlie are discussing what was happening when they met the MiG, and Goose says "You know, the finger." In the original 1985 cinema release, Charlie replies "Yes, I know the finger, Lieutenant," but in the video release this has been changed to "Yes, I know the finger, Goose." If you look closely you'll see that her lips don't move when she enunciates the word "Goose," and if you listen carefully you can hear the edit change in the soundtrack between "finger," and "Goose."

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Factual error: The training was conducted at Miramar, 5 (or so) miles from the beach. When Charlie confronts Maverick about his flying and he leaves on a motorcycle, he zooms up a hill away from the ocean leaving NTC SD (Naval Training Center San Diego - not Miramar) with the Coronado Bay Bridge - and lots of ocean water - in the background.

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Factual error: The implausibility of holding class in a hangar instead of a classroom has already been mentioned. But how about the desk just inside of the hangar doors, complete with blotter, "in" and "out" baskets and other accessories?

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Continuity mistake: In the scene where the guy tells Cruise "Maverick, you and Goose get your butts into Viper's office now", when the scene is close up on his face, the black guy is on the right, but as soon as it goes back to the regular scene the black guy is on the left.

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Factual error: Although it doesn't occur in the land-based tower at Miramar during Mitchell's first high-speed pass (thankfully), when he repeats the pass at the carrier, the camera work tries to make it look like the jet rocks the tower. US super carriers displace over 100,000 tons, and are not pushed around even by 30,000 pounds of thrust flying nearby.

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Factual error: In the final dogfight scene, the Search and Rescue helicopter lands with rescued pilots very soon after the last F-14 lands. The dogfight took place approximately 250 miles away from the ship. The top speed of an H-3 is 120 knots. It should have taken the helo nearly two hours to return to the ship.

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Continuity mistake: During the volleyball match, Maverick's dog-tag disappears.

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AidanN

Other mistake: I don't remember there ever being an Alert 5 aircraft during normal flight operations, like Maverick was at the end of the movie. He should have been up in the air already. The Alert aircraft were normally set up before normal flight operations started in the morning.

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Ken Hogan

Deliberate mistake: In the locker room scene after the final dogfight, Wolfman's helmet is seen hanging in Hollywood's locker. Hollywood's helmet is blue.

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Continuity mistake: At the end of the briefing before the final scene, Iceman questions Maverick's capabilities. He's right to do so as Maverick can't make up his mind what aircraft he's supposed to be flying. First we see him climbing into the cockpit of an F-14, then when the aircraft is placed on the catapult, it changes to an A6 Intruder. When the order is given for Alert-5 launch, he's flying an F-14.

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Continuity mistake: In the bathroom, Charlie has a tube of lipstick, next cut it's gone.

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Continuity mistake: The flight where Goose dies begins over land - where the pilots are chatting. When they see the enemy they are over water. In the next shot they are over mountains and desert again, until they land on the water. That doesn't add up. There are no places in California where the desert goes all the way to the coast with no towns at all.

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Jacob La Cour

Other mistake: When Maverick is doing the fly-by at the end of the movie, you can notice the crew watching for the F-14's to fly by the carrier. It's obvious the fly-by was set up, otherwise the crew wouldn't be waiting to watch them fly by.

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Ken Hogan

Factual error: After the final dogfight scene when Maverick and Iceman have landed, we see their two F-14 Tomcats spotted (parked) on the flight deck of the carrier. In the background, you see aircraft already spotted on the fantail (back of the ship) with several blocking the direct path of any aircraft landing on the carrier. While the aircraft directors and blueshirt crews would be fast in moving aircraft, they would not have had the time to spot and tie down all those aircraft on the fantail before Maverick and Iceman had finished parking their jets.

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Continuity mistake: At Top Gun School, when Maverick does his "hit the brakes and he'll fly right by" move, watch close and you will see part of the canopy moulding fly off the cockpit as the nose comes up.

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Continuity mistake: In the final dogfight when Iceman shoots down the MiG, he says "roger, engage" and switches to missiles with his thumb on the flight stick. He then locks on and switches to missiles again. The switch was already in the correct position.

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Factual error: After the graduation at Top Gun, the next scene shown is an aircraft carrier and the caption "24 hours later." To allow pilots time to overcome the effects of jet lag, they are grounded one day for every three times zones they crossed. Maverick wouldn't even have been on the flight schedule within 24 hours of having left California.

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Factual error: US Flight suits certainly have their share of insignia on them, including name, rank, unit and sometimes others. Often aircraft type, school and hours awards are also worn, but they don't look as much like NASCAR fire suits as the movie makes out. Even so, all extraneous insignia are removed when operating in a combat zone. They're attached with velcro for this purpose.

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Deliberate mistake: At the beginning of the movie, during the first encounter with the Migs, Goose whips out a Polaroid camera and takes a picture of the Mig while inverted. There is no chance that the other plane would be visible in the photo. Goose used a flash bulb. The glass of the canopy would reflect the majority of that flash right back at the camera. The only thing that would appear in the photo would be a big white flash of light.

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Factual error: In describing the first encounter with the MiG, Maverick tells Charlie he saw a MiG do a negative 4G dive. However, in that scene, the two planes are flying straight and level - neither one climbs or dives at any time.

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Continuity mistake: When Iceman's plane is hit and begins smoking, the camera is placed behind the firing port for the F-14's gun. The smoke we see is actually from the gun firing, which Ice wasn't doing at the time.

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Factual error: The helicopter on an aircraft carrier is usually one of the first aircraft airborne during flight ops. The helicopter should have been airborne already when they call to launch the rescue helicopter when Hollywood was shot down.

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Ken Hogan

Continuity mistake: When Iceman confronts Maverick about covering Cougar, Iceman is shown putting his watch on as Maverick is walking up the stairs. In the next frame, when he is standing next to Maverick, he is shown putting it on again.

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Continuity mistake: Scene of Tom's last take off - the Tomcat's tail number changes before he lands OR TC changed planes mid-air.

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Factual error: Cougar would not have a photo of his wife and kids in the cockpit as seen in the opening scene, as it would fly around when maneuvering. It could also obscure instruments and before he took off each day he would need to put this photo in place, as pilots don't have their own private planes.

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Factual error: 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.

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Grumpy Scot

Continuity mistake: In the opening scene, we know Maverick and Goose are flying in the morning because the CAG is greeted with a "Good morning, sir" before he asks who is flying. As the scene plays out, it is certainly taking place during the day. However, by the time Maverick is escorting Cougar back to the ship, the sun is setting - by the time Cougar's plane lands on the ship, it is quite dark. First, it seems highly unlikely that the encounter with the MiGs would have taken that long, and the F-14's certainly wouldn't have been able to stay airborne that long without refuelling - which we never see.

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Continuity mistake: In the scene at the beginning of the movie when the Commander walks into the flight control room on the aircraft carrier and asks "Who's up there. Great Maverick and Goose"; he is only wearing pilot wings on his uniform. As the scene progresses when Maverick and Cougar tangle with the Migs, the admiral is in the control room and his uniform changes to being completely decorated.

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Continuity mistake: In the first dogfight there are several shots where the planes are very close to the ground - especially one flying over a flat desert where you can see the planes' shadows. In those shots they are definitely below 10,000 feet. However it is only later said that they are going below the hard deck.

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Jacob La Cour

Continuity mistake: In the opening scenes of the movie, they show a number of planes landing and being prepped for takeoff. One of the planes landing has the number 114 clearly shown on the right side. This is Maverick and Goose's plane. Why is it landing when two minutes later they're on patrol 250 miles from the carrier?

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Factual error: When Maverick is riding his bike to get away from Charlie, he comes over a hill. There are no hills near NAS Miramar (Home of Fighttown USA/Top Gun).

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Revealing mistake: The aircraft the American pilots are fighting against at the end are described as being "MiGs", but they are American F-5 jets, called Tigers, which the Navy is still using for the training of young pilots.

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Continuity mistake: In the scene where Kelly McGillis hands Tom Cruise the note saying "meet me at my house 5:30 sharp" or something like that, if you look carefully you can see when she hands Cruise the note that there is a lot of print on the sheet, but when he looks at it in a close up the sheet is totally white blank except for her writing.

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Continuity mistake: While Maverick is dogfighting Viper in Top Gun school he is in a F-14, and Viper is in A-4. Viper gets on Maverick's back, but in one scene you see the A-4 flies through the view before the F-14, although he should be behind him...

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Continuity mistake: In the scene where Maverick and Slider are studying and Charlie slips Maverick the piece of paper with her address on it, Slider changes seats. First he is at one end of the table near the wall, then at the end of the scene he, and all of his stuff, is at the opposite end of the table.

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Continuity mistake: At the beginning of the film, the squadron commander enters CATTC with a chest full of ribbons, next shot, all ribbons are gone. There is no smoking in CATTC (for the equipment) and the radar in CATTC cannot be used to monitor air combat movement as they did in the film. The Combat Centre or CIC is used for that.

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Continuity mistake: In the last dogfight, Ice says "two MiGs passing between us." It then shows the two passing between either Ice or Maverick and a single tail jet. The Grumman F-14 Tomcat is a twin tail.

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Continuity mistake: When Goose dies, "Sundown" acts as Mav's RIO. On the plane his helmet has a Sun with rays, and walking on the runaway it does not.

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Continuity mistake: In the final battle scene, Slider sees two MIGs dead ahead and Iceman says he will "Take them down the left side." In a front view the two MIGs come towards them, but cut to a side view and the two MIGs pass, suddenly followed by a third.

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Revealing mistake: Maverick and the others are supposedly on the Enterprise (CVN-65), which is a one-of-a-kind ship with a distinctive silhouette, but the movie repeatedly shows the Carl Vinson (CVN-70), a Nimitz-class carrier.

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Continuity mistake: The night before graduation, Maverick is parked on his bike at the runway. An incoming jet is seen, with gear and hook down. But in the next shot the jet just keeps flying. And it's not a test landing and take-off. It's two different planes mixed.

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Jacob La Cour

Continuity mistake: Count the doors opening and closing - Mav walks through a closed elevator door.

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Factual error: Tom Cruise says of the song 'Sitting on the Dock of the Bay' "my folks loved it". However, his father died in 1965, his mother died "shortly after him", and the song wasn't written until 1967.

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Revealing mistake: You can tell the scene where Goose dies is done in shallow water instead of the middle of the ocean, where it should be, because in the shot right after Goose splashes down into the water, Maverick takes a few steps to get to Goose instead of swimming over to him.

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Factual error: Iceman is hit by cannon fire and has to shut down the right engine as a consequence. Later on, when Iceman and Maverick return to the carrier, Maverick asks for a flyby, which both tomcats perform as if nothing had happened to Iceman's plane. This violates regulation, essential safety protocols and it contradicts both Maverick and Iceman's personalities. The first thing you want to do when flying with only one engine (because your plane is damaged) is to make sure you land as soon as possible, you don't perform flybys, you don't even consider it. The remaining engine could fail too, turning the tomcat into a glider, that would mean the loss of the plane and it would put the lives of both pilots at even more risk. Maverick wouldn't allow this after losing Goose and Iceman has that nickname and reputation because he's a perfectionist, he plays utterly by the rules he wouldn't act like a fool when flying a damaged plane in that context. Also, Iceman performs that flyby with both engines running, which is absurd.

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Hardcard

Continuity mistake: When Maverick goes to land while Cougar is in fuel trouble, the tailhook is down. He decides Cougar needs help and launches back off the carrier, the tailhook is up. The next view as he flies away from the carrier the tailhook is once again down.

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Factual error: In the final dogfight, it is declared that the MIG-28s carry the "Exocet" anti-ship missile. This missile is around 1,500lbs and would be visible on the enemy fighters. That additional wing loading would have made them ineffective in a dogfight and they would have been easily overwhelmed by the F-14s in a dogfighting (no external tanks or heavy ordinance) configuration. Not to mention that Exocet is a French-made missile and would not be carried by a Soviet fighter.

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Continuity mistake: While in the opening air scene, the names of the pilot and his RIO are backwards.

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Continuity mistake: In the elevator scene Kelly McGillis's hair is a different colour (I think a shade of red) than earlier or later in the film. Apparently this scene was filmed months after Top Gun filming was complete while McGillis was shooting another film. This explains the baseball cap and ponytail.

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Continuity mistake: After the class where they meet Charlie for the first time, and Maverick reveals that he's "the one", he's confronted by Iceman. The Iceman asks him who was watching Cougar, while he was "show boating" with this MiG. If you watch Iceman you'll see that he puts his watch on twice.

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Continuity mistake: Towards the beginning of the movie Tom Cruise loses a bet to Ice and must pay up. He extends his hand out with a bill folded. The camera switches back and forth and the bill changes from being folded in half to being folded in quarters.

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Factual error: When Maverick and Merlin are launched off the enterprise, the dogfight in which Iceman is in trouble takes place a hundred miles out. Despite this Maverick reaches it in "30" seconds. The F14 is fast, but not that fast...

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Factual error: In every scene in which Maverick and Goose are in their flight suits, the squadron patch they wear is that of Airborne Early Warning Squadron One Two Zero (VAW-120). The same graphic is use on their flight helmets. Airborne Early Warning Squadrons in 1986 were flying the E-2C Hawkeye, a twin-turboprop aircraft with a rather large and obvious 24' diameter rotating dome mounted above the fuselage. Also worth noting, the squadron logo used on the aircraft in the movie was that of Strike Fighter Squadron 25, the "Fist of the Fleet." VFA-25 never flew F-14 Tomcats. In 1968, they flew the A-7B Corsair II, then in May 1983 they transitioned to the F/A -18A Hornet.

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Plot hole: In the debrief in Viper's office following Maverick and Goose's first flight at Top Gun (in which they defeat Jester), Viper states that "Commander Heatherly lost sight of you and called no joy." However, during the actual flight scene, you never hear Jester call "no joy." I've always assumed that this part of the scene was accidentally left in the editing room.

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Character mistake: In the scene where Maverick flies into Iceman's jetwash, as they are descending, Maverick calls out the altitude as 6,000 however the metre is displaying between 2,000 and 3,000.

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bdabin

Continuity mistake: In the scene where Charlie picked up Maverick from the hospital, you can see the rear view mirror of her car is low, between the actors' faces. The camera zooms in and the mirror can be seen raised slightly above the top of the windshield. The camera zooms out and the mirror is low again.

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Continuity mistake: The scene in the "tack" room, when they are evaluating dog fight maneuvers, Charlie is sitting on the desk wearing a beige pencil skirt, a few moments later when chasing Maverick down outside, she is in a black pencil skirt.

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Character mistake: In the military, at the time of filming, basic protocol was that you wear your "cover" or hat when outside. When walking back from Goose's funeral, outside, Tom Cruise is carrying his hat.

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morantis

Factual error: Pretty much everyone who fires a missile in this movie uses the stick's trigger. In a fighter aircraft, the trigger controls the radio/intercom or fires the gun. The red button on the far left fires weapons after the hat or castle switch selects them.

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Other mistake: When Maverick goes to Charlie's house for dinner the first time, you see the "For Rent" sign in front of the house. At this time, she has said that she's only applied for another position. Much later, after Charlie and Maverick talk about her actually getting the promotion, he drives by her house on his motorcycle and seems to focus on the presence of the "For Rent" sign out front.

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Continuity mistake: In the first scene where the pilots are introduced to Charlie, Iceman's RIO is has blue Walkman earphones around his neck. You see him put them on and then the next scene you see him with them around his neck.

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Continuity mistake: In the final dogfight, Hollywood and Iceman are up against 5, count them, 5 Migs. Hollywood is shot down and Maverick is launched. Maverick takes out one Mig, Iceman takes out the next. That is two. Maverick takes out a third. For the finale, Maverick hits the brakes and lets him fly right by for a total of FOUR kills. Then the remaining Migs bug out. Two Migs are shown leaving. That adds up to 6 Migs, not 5. [Initially 5 Migs do show up on radar. But just after Maverick launches, Slider tells Iceman "We've got four on our tail. That makes 6 of them". So there isn't actually a continuity error when the remaining two Migs "bug out".]

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Continuity mistake: When Maverick and Goose land in the sea by parachute, they are virtually on top of each other. But on the way down they are quite far apart, and would definitely not have landed in exactly the same spot.

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Jacob La Cour

Continuity mistake: In the volleyball scene, Tom Cruise is shown oiled up, tanned, and with clear muscle definition. He then walks off the volleyball court in a new camera angle. He now does not have the muscle definition or neck area tan he had during the volleyball game seconds earlier. Additionally, the configuration and number of people in the stands is different from the previous camera angle.

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attention2detail
Upvote valid corrections to help move entries into the corrections section.

Suggested correction: They don't show the whole game from start to finish. Just highlighting when either team scores, so people could have come and gone in between. Also, the "oil" on him, could have been used to show he was sweating. By the end of the game, it's possible he wasn't sweating as much, or simply had wiped himself off with a towel at some point that we never saw.

Continuity mistake: In the beginning scene of the movie, Maverick and Cougar encounter 2 Soviet Migs. When one of the MIgs is first shown from the camera angle on its right side, it is a delta winged aircraft. The next scene that shows the Migs, they have standard wings. The wings change at least twice during the opening air encounter.

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Hawk

Continuity mistake: Mav flies aircraft number 114 throughout the movie, then loses it in the flat spin. However when he is flying with Sundowner where he won't engage them in the final battle he is back in 114 again.

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Factual error: When Mav is talking to Charlie he said his dad went missing in an F4 in 1965. Much later when Mav is at Viper's house Viper states that he flew with Mav's dad in VF51. VF51 flew the F8 Crusader until 1971 when they transitioned to the F4, so if Mav's dad was in VF51 as implied in '65 he would have been in an F8, not an F4.

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Continuity mistake: When Maverick hits the brakes on Jester he's wearing a stainless steel Rolex Submariner. Later when he lock-s on and "kills" Jester he pumps his fist and is wearing a "blacked-out" different watch.

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Continuity mistake: When Charlie is briefing the pilots on what a MiG can do, Slider and the guy behind Maverick have their sunglasses on in one shot, then off in another and then on again in another.

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Continuity mistake: In the scene in the airport after Maverick quits, Charlie tells him, "you've got that maneuver down real well," and it cuts to a close-up of Maverick. Movement is seen in the shiny wall behind him, which is a reflection of Charlie standing up. It cuts to a wide shot of both of them seated. Then she stands up to say, "So long, Pete Mitchell."

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Reformed Dispatcher

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