Will not. But this is not necessarily bad news. It won’t because, first of all, this Western Civilization thing is just an abstraction that we created to try to understand how we got here. And, let’s be honest, to be proud of our accomplishments, from the Iliad and Odyssey (sources in which “Top Gun: Maverick” drinks heavily) to the atomic bomb. It won’t because, secondly, where did this idea that Western Civilization needs saving come from?
Thirdly and lastly, Tom Cruise is not going to save Western Civilization because it’s just that type of mentality that gives rise to tyrants of all hues and tendencies. George Soros believes himself to be the savior of Western Civilization. Bill Gates, ditto. If in doubt, even Anitta and Alexandre de Moraes see themselves as saviors of a sliver of Western Civilization.
No. With “Top Gun: Maverick” and its (opens big, funny quotes) injection of toxic masculinity (closes big quotes), Tom Cruise is not going to save Western Civilization. But he can save your day, like he saved my Sunday. Not without first giving me a little support. It’s just that, before the movie started, the crowded room and I were exposed to a UN propaganda that said that we are close to extinction. Which just proves that my second paragraph is right, very right, absolutely right.
Back to the movie. “Top Gun: Maverick” is a breath of hope for those who from time to time despair about the carriage ride. Not because it appeals to nostalgia, although among the forties there is that feeling of “ah, things were so much better and so much simpler before”. And weren’t they?! Hope lies in evoking ancient values to tell a story that is as old as Western Civilization itself.
And, judging by the audience’s reaction, the crowd yearns for heroism, friendship , honor, duty accomplished and faith – even if none of these things are explicitly mentioned in the film. And need? In fact, they better not. Otherwise, “Top Gun: Maverick” would not be an adventure, but a pamphlet. And I think you can already see that everyone is fucking with pamphlets on the right or on the left.
Buried by the hostile reality of everyday life, the moviegoers who go to the movies to see “Top Gun: Maverick” just want to dream. And here it is important to emphasize that we are not talking about an animation or a superhero film – two genres that have their good moments, but whose narrative monopoly in recent decades has prevented human beings from recognizing themselves in the moving dream of cinema. It makes a huge difference to see the good of flesh and blood triumph, oh, if it does. And dreaming like that is better because the realization of that dream is palpable.
After all, we all have, daily, a uranium enrichment plant to destroy after flying through a canyon, dodging anti-aircraft missiles, and then withstand the force of ten gravities, in the hope that the enemy will not have time to react. Not to mention the memories and trauma that accompany us beyond the spectacular landing on the aircraft carrier. We all yearn, daily, for the contemplative flight alongside the beloved woman, towards the sunset.
All this so that, the next day, we wake up with another extremely risky mission, which will require everyone we fellowship, forgiveness (!), courage, faith, honor. And a little bit of the virtuous rebellion that gives flavor to even the most sleepy of lives.