Top Gun, when Tom Cruise’s film revolutionized the fashion and dreams of the 80s

Top Gun: Tom Cruise in a promo image from the film

Top Gun: Tom Cruise in a promo image from the film

Vestivamo alla marinara is the title of a famous novel. The reference is to the way of dressing that was intended for children of yesteryear. But a whole generation, more recent, could really say “we dressed as aviators“It’s obviously the generation that grew up in the 80s, the decade that saw the arrival of Superior guna film which, somehow, came out of the halls to trigger a craze and a fashion that never completely disappeared. Now that Top Gun: Maverick arrives in Italian cinemas on May 25 (with some previews on May 21 and 22), while waiting to go to the cinema to see it, many of you will be watching Superior gun, the 1986 classic directed by Tony Scott. It’s a film inextricably linked to that decade, but it’s also a product that, seen today, entertains and never bores with every viewing. Superior gun it arrived in the second half of the 80s, anticipated by the images of a young and still little known Tom Cruise in magazines from abroad, such as the German Bravo, and music videos of Berlin and Kenny Loggins that appeared on rotation on shows and music channels. In short, Top Gun was not just a film, it brought a world with it. So like today.

Those bomber jackets

Tom Cruise in a scene from Top Gun

Tom Cruise in a scene from Top Gun

In the new Top Gun: Maverick, you will see it, the key elements of Superior gun they are revealed and celebrated as they deserve. Because they have now entered the collective imagination. And, after all, they never really went out of fashion. Teardrop Ray-Bans and, above all, leather bomber jackets had become staples for those who wanted to be fashionable. Made of thick brown leather with a fur interior and adorned with a series of patches, they were often ordered in America. But there were also those who liked to create their own Top Gun jacket themselves, buying a leather jacket of this type and applying the patches strategically. The most famous bomber jackets were produced by Avirex, and from some point in the 80s they entered the look of the “Paninari“, which until then was mainly composed of Moncler down jackets and Schott leather jackets. But the Top Gun look, which was generally completed with light jeans, was not exclusively the prerogative of “Paninari”. It was something transversal, which fascinated even those who had nothing to do with this fashion. During these years, Avirex produced various aviator jackets, even different from those of Superior gun, and this garment has become a classic: think of the jackets with pin-up images typical of the pilots of the forties and fifties. These days, Avirex has created, along with its younger AVX line, a series of iconic apparel featuring the original graphics from the film, and the patches that viewers can admire on the jackets worn by the aviation pilots in the film.

Top Gun: 5 reasons why after thirty years it still makes us dream

We wanted to get into the Air Force

Top Gun: Tom Cruise in commercial image for the film

Top Gun: Tom Cruise in commercial image for the film

But in the Top Gun years, and beyond, it wasn’t just about fashion. Top Gun was not just clothes, but something more. Just rewatching the second film came to mind as one of the reasons for the film’s success. Basically, it is one of the dreams of man since the dawn of time, as evidenced by the legend of Icarus. The dream of flying, of soaring as high as possible, above everything. Many boys in those years dreamed of joining the Air Force, and many also succeeded, talking with their parents, directing their studies in this direction. After all, Top Gun is not a war film, it does not evoke the war, although being in the military sphere. The evolutions of the fighters, high in the sky, have more to do with a video game, or with a feeling of freedom. This is why, even today, reviewing the classic or the new Top Gun: Maverick at a time when a war is going on, we are never really upset. Superior gun This is another thing. It is a world apart.

Tom Cruise with Kelly McGillis in Top Gun

Tom Cruise with Kelly McGillis in Top Gun

The 80s, Reagan and the Libyan MIG

Tom Cruise and Anthony Edwards in Top Gun

Tom Cruise and Anthony Edwards in Top Gun

Even the first Superior gun, after all, although steeped in American propaganda, it was something different from other films of the 80s, and, above all, from any war film. In that sense, there was probably already an air of detente between the two superpowers, the United States and the Soviet Union. It was still Ronald Reagan’s United States, of course, but the tide was turning: a bit like in Rocky IV, the two blocks oppose each other, but the end tells us that the world can change. In Top Gun, we don’t go that far. Of course, aviators are the best pilots in the world, almost superheroes. The planes that oppose the American fighters are MiGs: Russian-made planes, but in the film they display the Libyan flag. This overturned flight over the Libyan mig, this “greeting“so ironic that he almost seems to want to give a signal to relax. A sign that the tension was fading. Strange to talk about it today that, all of a sudden, this tension has risen.

Top Gun: 30 years of the film with Tom Cruise, manifesto of Americanism

Tony Scott, from advertising to cinema

Tom Cruise in a scene from the movie Top Gun

Tom Cruise in a scene from the movie Top Gun

Superior gun it is inextricably linked to the 80s, and goat aesthetics must be part of this period. These were the years when a generation of filmmakers coming from advertising brought their aesthetic to cinema. Artists like Ridley Scott and Adrian Lyne, like Tony Scott, Ridley’s brother (to whom Top Gun: Maverickafter his death in 2012, is dedicated), they came from the world of advertisements, a brilliant and constructed world”,fake“in a good way, i.e. unreal, cleverly constructed to present a product. This style also comes into Superior gun, which in the end could be considered – but this is by no means a criticism – an advertisement for American aviation. The use of lights, sometimes unnatural, forced, constructed, is cleverly created to bring out the beauty of the planes, and especially that of the bodies of the characters. Clear examples of this style are the opening sequence, with the planes taking off, but also the famous volleyball match, with the lights that bring out the muscles of the pilots, and the famous love scene between Tom Cruise and Kelly McGillis.

Tom Cruise with Val Kilmer in Top Gun

Tom Cruise with Val Kilmer in Top Gun

Giorgio Moroder and the music of the 80s

Tom Cruise with Kelly McGillis in a scene from Top Gun

Tom Cruise with Kelly McGillis in a scene from Top Gun

But, to remind us that we are well planted in the eighties each time we see him again Superior gun, it is also this essential music. These were the years of synthesizers, drums with reverb, sounds that we thought were out of fashion, but which today do not sound dated, and, at the same time, they immediately bring us back to those years. These are the years when the music and cinema began to promote each other. And then the music videos of Take My Breath Away from Berlin and Kenny Loggins’ Danger Zone, in continuous rotation on music TV, served as a powerful and continuous trailer for the film. The film’s signature song is Breathtaking, written by Giorgio Moroder and Tom Whitlock, which won the Oscar and Golden Globe for best song in 1987. Empathetic, melodramatic on an enveloping carpet of synthesizers, the song was the pinnacle of success, and at the same time the cause of the dissolution of the American group Berlin, which entered into crisis for having had success with a song which was not written by them and did not represent them. In a recent interview with Rolling Stone, musician and producer Mauro Paoluzzi said that he wrote a very similar song for Ornella Vanoni at that time. And to be in conflict with Giorgio Moroder for that… If Breathtaking (of which there is an Italian version, Breathtaking, by Cristiano Malgioglio …) is the romantic side of Top Gun, that of adrenaline is Dangerous zone by Kenny Loggins, who wrote and sang Free from all ties. Danger Zone is also written by Moroder and Whitlock, and was supposed to be sung by Toto, but it was later decided to give it to him. Don’t forget, in true eighties style, the epic Top Gun Anthem, by Harold Faltermeyer and Steve Stevens. In addition to two songs that later traveled back in time, (Sitting on) the dock of the bay by Otis Redding and large balls of fire by Jerry Lee Lewis, which Maverick and Goose sang on the piano, in another unforgettable scene.

Giorgio Moroder: his best songs for the cinema, from Flashdance to Top Gun

Leave a Comment