Top Gun: Maverick was hugely successful because it was nostalgic and paid tribute to the original while also feeling fresh and new. If Indiana Jones 5 does the same, it’ll likely be majorly successful too…
When Top Gun: Maverick flew into cinemas earlier this year, no one – not even Tom Cruise himself, I’d wager – knew just how successful it would be. The film broke multiple box office records and was universally praised for its story, acting and airforce stunts.
Even iconic filmmaker Quentin Tarantino “f*cking” loved Top Gun: Maverick. But in a time where everyone is sick of the non-stop remakes and reboots Hollywood is churning out, why was the sequel to a film that came out thirty-six years ago so beloved?
Personally, I believe Top Gun: Maverick was so successful because it perfectly balanced nostalgia with new. Seeing a few familiar faces (like Cruise and Val Kilmer) playing the same characters from the original Top Gun and seeing the occasional nod to the first film here and there was extremely welcoming and comfortably nice.
But because there was an array of new characters introduced, a fresh plotline and a modern setting also featured in Top Gun: Maverick, the film didn’t feel like a cheap cash grab that was playing it safe. Ultimately, the film felt remarkably fresh but familiar all at the same time… Which is no easy feat.
Therefore, it’ll be interesting to see if the upcoming Indiana Jones film – the fifth in the franchise, which like Top Gun began in the 80s – will achieve similar results to Top Gun: Maverick. At the moment, I think it just might. Harrison Ford is returning as the titular character once again, keeping things nostalgic.
Plus, according to TMZ, during the D23 Expo that took place last weekend, Ford said this new Indiana Jones film will both ‘pack a lot of punch and have a lot of heart; just like the original films did’. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean Indiana Jones 5 will just be a rehash of the previous films.
For instance, Steven Spielberg – who directed the first four Indiana Jones films – is not returning to direct. No disrespect to Spielberg (obviously, he’s one of the greatest filmmakers of all time) but James Mangold – who’s directing Indiana Jones 5 – may breathe new life into the franchise just like director Joseph Kosinski did with Top Gun: Maverick (Top Gun was directed by Tony Scott).
Additionally, this is the first Indiana Jones film to have its story written by someone other than George Lucas and multiple new characters will be introduced in the fifth Indiana Jones (played by Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Mads Mikkelsen and Antonio Banderas), both of which could – and hopefully will – make Indiana Jones 5 feel new and original.
Of course, we still have a bit of waiting to do before we find out whether the fifth Indiana Jones film experiences a similar success to that of Top Gun: Maverick; the film’s still untilted and won’t be released until the 29th of June next year…