RT Podcast

"Rotten Tomatoes Is Wrong" About... Top Gun

We feel the need — the need for speed — as we gear up for Top Gun: Maverick by remembering the fighter pilot flick that became a classic of the 1980s.

by | May 5, 2022 | Comments

Tom Cruise in Top Gun (1986)

(Photo by ©Paramount Pictures)

For a movie that had as much of a pop culture impact as 1986’s Top Gun did, it’s kind of amazing that it has remained a one-off for all these years. You had the blossoming superstar talents of a young Tom Cruise and a young Val Kilmer, director Tony Scott breaking into the mainstream with the help of producer Jerry Bruckheimer, and expertly crafted action scenes the likes of which we hadn’t ever quite seen before. But nostalgia is all the rage these days, and three and a half decades later, we’re finally getting a sequel in Top Gun: Maverick, so it’s time to take another look at the original.


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Regular co-host Jacqueline Coley is still recovering from awards season (and preparing for the festival circuit), so Mark Ellis flies solo this week, but he’s got two very capable wingmen by his side. Together, Ben Bateman and Andrew Ghai co-host The Action Guys podcast, and if you need any evidence that they’re perfect for this episode, all you have to do is look at their logo, which, by their own admission, is a “ripoff” of the Top Gun logo. Considering the film is Rotten at 57% on the Tomatometer with an 83% Audience Score, it’s probably no surprise how they feel about the movie.

Andrew finds the Tomatometer score “insulting” and says “RT is 150% wrong” about Top Gun; he’d personally place it somewhere between 78% and 84%. Ben, of course, agrees, though he’d put it closer to 90%. He reasons that the film is a “cartoon time capsule” of what ’80s action films were supposed to look like, and a prime example of Tony Scott’s fantastic action sensibilities. And prepare for another lovefest here, because Mark puts this one somehwere in his top 10 movies of all time. Tune in to hear them talk about Scott’s work in the director’s chair, that epic soundtrack, the endlessly quotable one-liners, and all the iconic moments.

Check in every Thursday for a new episode of Rotten Tomatoes Is Wrong (A Podcast From Rotten Tomatoes). Each week, hosts Jacqueline and Mark and guests go deep and settle the score on some of the most beloved – and despised – movies and TV shows ever made, directly taking on the statement we hear from so many fans: “Rotten Tomatoes is wrong.”


Check out some more episodes of Rotten Tomatoes Is Wrong:


If you have a suggestion for a movie or show you think we should do an episode on, let us know in the comments, or email us at rtiswrong@rottentomatoes.com.


Meet the hosts

Jacqueline Coley is an editor at Rotten Tomatoes, with a focus on awards and indie coverage but with a passion for everything, from the MCU to musicals and period pieces. Coley is a regular moderator at conventions and other events, can be seen on Access Hollywood and other shows, and will not stand Constantine slander of any kind. Follow Jacqueline on Twitter: @THATjacqueline.

Mark Ellis is a comedian and contributing editor for Rotten Tomatoes. He currently hosts the Rotten Tomatoes series Versus, among others, and can be seen co-hosting the sports entertainment phenomenon Movie Trivia Schmoedown. His favorite Star Wars movie is Jedi (guess which one!), his favorite person is actually a dog (his beloved stepdaughter Mollie), and – thanks to this podcast – he’s about to watch Burlesque for the first time in his life. Follow Mark on Twitter: @markellislive.


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