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Comedy - Family

Hot Shots! (1991)


Duration 1h 24m Rating (UK) 12
Source of story A parody of Top Gun
Director Jim Abrahams
Writers/Script Jim Abrahams, Pat Proft
Starring Charlie Sheen, Cary Elwes, Valeria Golino, Lloyd Brdiges, Efrem Zimbalist Jr., Ryan Styles,

Elevator Pitch: This is Top Gun as a comedy. Topper Harley is a fighter pilot who has issues to do with the death of his father, but he is brilliant, and impresses the female hearthrob of the base, with whom he seems to start having an affair. He and the rest of the squadron are assigned to an aircraft carrier under the command of looney Admiral Benson, and are sent out to bomb Saddam Hussein.

Content: Every possible scene from Top Gun lampooned, plus a few more. Some scenes of fighter aircraft zooming over the landscape, but in the main Topper pratfalling, engaging in unlikely scenes with Ramada (including frying eggs on her ribcage) and being seen in the aircraft cockpit. On the aircraft carrier a lot of jokes involving the enthusiastic signing of the deck crew. The Admiral acts very stupidly.

A View: Alarmingly this film was chosen for the 1991 UK Royal Film Performance attended by the queen. It was quite well liked by both the critics and the public at the time and made a lot of money, so there was a sequel. I was tempted to make it an “almost don’t see”, but actually it is pretty harmless, and you can’t quite make a joke out of jet fighters storming over the landscape – one of the problems with the film I would say. So if you do decide to watch it – for nothing – be prepared to be disappointed; on the plus side it lasts for less than an hour and a half.

Additional Info: This is one of a number of spoof movies directed by Jim Abrahams. If you have seen any of the others this one will not come as a surprie.

About Victor R Gibson

Author of this site three technical books and two novels


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