Top Gun Movie Behind The Scenes

Top Gun Goofs

Top Gun Picture
Cruise contemplates the 1 million+ fee he's getting paid...


"Er, someone wasn't on top of their game that day..."
See the goofs, blunders and plain ole mistakes in the 1986 Action / Adventure movie starring Tom Cruise, Kelly McGillis, Val Kilmer More Cast

We believe the following are all legit mistakes. If we've bungled it, or you have additional info, please update us.

Thanks to Josh Eldridge
Patch problems: Maverick is supposed to be part of the Wolfpack of VF-1. But if you notice the patch that he wears is from and E-2C unit aboard the same carrier. And the squadron patch that Iceman and Slider are wearing are actually unit patches of VFA-25 "The Fist of The Fleet" who fly the F/A-18 Hornet.
Thanks to Lionel
At the beginning of the film the bald guy is not wearing any ribbons while in the control room, but then a few moments later, he has them on.
Thanks to Paul Messenger
In the beginning, when Maverick is about to land on the carrier, he throws the throttle backward to make the audience think he's speeding up to get back to Cougar, but he is actually throttling down the aircraft. He would've come to a dead halt in real life!
Thanks to John Holmes
In the early bar scene, after 'Charlie' blows off Maverick, he says something to the effect of "bartender, I need a beer." However, he grabs a beer that is sitting there, and has been through the whole encounter. If you look closely, it's actually a beer another person was drinking!
Thanks to Adam McGowan
When Goose and Maverick are singing to 'Charlie' in the bar, they get the words wrong. They say '...but baby, believe me I know that...' when it's actually '...but baby, baby I know that...'. It could be seen as a mistake by the characters, but the full bar make the same mistake..?
Thanks to Silvia Mendoza
At the end of the movie, a victorious Maverick is hoisted on the shoulders of the guys. As he goes up, he isn't wearing sunglasses, his head goes out of the shot, and when he comes down, he's wearing a pair!
Thanks to Craig Perks
After Goose dies and Maverick is flying with a new co-pilot and won't engage, the co-pilot's name on his helmet dissappears after they land and are walking accross the tarmac, when he is telling Maverick "we could have had him man, we could have had him!"
Thanks to JBrown
When is a goof not a goof? Well, on the movie cover if you look at Tom Cruise's jacket you will see a kind of red diamond looking patch on his right breast, that is a MARINE Airwing patch. Maverick was a Navy Fighter Pilot not a Marine Fighter Pilot, however the Marines are an adjunct service to the Navy and Marine pilots do attend TOP GUN
Thanks to Mikael
During the final air combat scene when Hollywood's plane takes a missile to the aft of the F-14A, he is forced to eject. When it shows Hollywood after he has "ejected" there are two VERY big errors. Error #1: Hollywood would have still been connected to the ejection seat. Error #2: You can see Hollywood "throw" his shute open. This is not how ejection seats work. As soon as the Pilot or RIO disconnect from the ejection seat, the shute automatically opens, thus, he would have no need to manually open his shute.
Thanks to Billy Coleman
In the scene when Maverick flies with Sundown just after Goose dies, Sundown has the name "Sundown" on his helmet when they are in the cockpit. When they are out of the plane afterwards the "Sundown" name has gone from the helmet.
Thanks to lucus76
In the Scene where Maverick is riding the motorcycle along the runway. The bike is actually being towed by a trailer. This would be just a bit of movie magic except for the tie down straps are visible in the shot, just above the front fender.
Thanks to Josh Eldridge
People have said that whenever the actors are in the cockpit you never see them with gloves on and their sleeves rolled down. US Military pilots are supposed to have their sleeves rolled down and gloves on in case of an emergency such as a fire or ejection.

Although pilots have written in to say that Naval Aviators were not required to wear gloves when flying over water, (the glove fingers being leather would become slippery if a the crew ended up in the water after an ejection, making it difficult to release parachute fittings), another reader wrote in to say that "It is absolutely not true that Naval Aviators do not wear gloves over water. OPNAV 3710.7T (and its previous iterations), which is the instruction that applies - does at no point indicate that you don't wear gloves or that the wear of gloves is optional over the water. Quite the opposite. You are required to wear gloves at all times in Naval Aircaft, because of the possibility of fire. Some people don't when they're over the boat, some don't ever, but they're breaking the rules. Trust me on this, I'm a Naval Aviator with over 1300 flight hours."
Thanks to Anonymous
After Charlie humiliates Maverick in front of the class and he storms out to his bike, you notice that the building is at NTC which is near San Diego Bay (Top Gun School was at NAS Miramar, about 15 miles north).

Also after he scoots off and Charlie follows him in her Porsche 356, they exit to the right through Gate 6 of NTC and wind up halfway up Laurel Street. NTC Gate 6 is on Rosecrans Blvd and to get to Laurel St, you have to take a right on Barnett and go to PCH, take right and then a left on Laurel. It's a few miles. Another way is if you were to exit Gate 6 is to take a left on Rosecrans, then a left on Nimitz, a left on Harbor Drive then to Laurel. That's also a bit of a roundabout way.
Thanks to The Stig
During the final dog fight scene, Maverick and Iceman are supposedly flying side by side.

Maverick says "Ice we got 2 Migs dead ahead".

Ice replies, "I see them, I see them, one Mig passing between us".

However when the shot of the mig passing between them is seen the other plane which should be an F14 appears to me to be a Mig 28.
Thanks to Anonymous
On Maverick's flight jacket there is a Seabee patch (best view is on the movie poster); The Seabees are the Navy's Construction Force. They do not fly aircraft and usually do not deploy on ships. Unless Maverick was a Seabee before he was a "Naval Aviator"?

Matt Cline kindly wrote in to update us: The reason Maverick had a Seabee patch on his jacket, was a nod to the battalion that built a lot of the sets for the movie. NMCB 1 aided heavily in the movie, so it was a thanks to them.
Thanks to Buck Taylor
In the scene where Maverick goes inverted with the Mig 28, the frames of the F14 imposed above the Mig are reversed, therefore "Mavericks" name bar just under the canopy line is back to front.
Thanks to Mister Radar
During a flight scene where the F-14 is coming in for a landing, the sound used is actually the sound of an S-3 Viking antisub jet. Nicknamed "Hoover" due its soundling like a vacuum cleaner. I should know, I spent 3 years working on the flight deck of USS Constellation.
Thanks to Rob Jones
In one of the last scenes when his CO walks into the locker room and asks him what he is going to do now that he is a hero if you look at the locker to the right of Mavericks it still has Goose's name stencilled on it.
Thanks to Tom Rice

Maverick and all the other pilots and REO's flying in the Top Gun movie's F-14 Tomcats are sitting on un-armed Martin Baker ejection seats! The seats are not even locked to the Ejection Gun.

In most of the inside cockpit flying simulation shots there is a Tool installed on the L/H side near the top of the Martin Baker ejection seat. It is a shiny brass (STAR Wheel) which is used to Un-lock the ejection seat from the Ejection gun which is mounted to the cockpit interior. The Star Wheel screws into the top latch plunger, this spring loded plunger retracts, unlocking the seat from the ejection gun, and allows the seat to be hoisted out of the aircraft, usually for ejection seat maintenance or other aircraft maintenance needed. (The Star Wheel is never installed in a seat unless the seat is be removed or installed in the aircraft.)

When Maverick goes inverted in the F-14, the seat (under normal circumstances) would slide down, he is upside down, and break through the canopy. Also when Maverick and Goose eject, since the Seats are not locked to the Ejection Gun the ejection gun would just fire and the telescoping tubes would just bust through the canopy glass leaving the seats in place. As for Goose hitting the F-14 canopy after her ejects... Hey it's a MOVIE!!
Thanks to Anonymous
In the final dogfight scenes, Slider warns Iceman, "You got a MiG on your left, 3 o'clock". I would assume one would either say "on your left" OR "9 o'clock" but not both.
Thanks to Karen Handy
Kelly and Tom are sitting down for dinner after the volleyball game, where the wine bottle "Charles Krug" label mysteriously switches a couple of times from seeing Charles to Charles Krug.
Thanks to Dave
Near the end of the movie when Maverick is sitting on his motorcycle (contemplating his future) watching an F-14 land at Miramar base; it has it's tail hook lowered which of course is only needed on the carrier deck.
Thanks to Derrick
During the combat briefing, the Ops Officer tells the pilots that the MiGs carry the Exocet Missile. MiGs are Russian, the Exocet is French, and they are incompatible.
Thanks to Chris
In the scene when Goose dies, as he's being hoisted up to the helo, you can see him adjust his collar.
Thanks to EMS CopterAV8R & Sea King AV8
In the final dogfight scene, when Hollywood and Wolfman are hit, Iceman reports that they're 180 (nautical) miles (nm) away from the Aircraft Carrier (CV) aka "Mustang". An SH-3H Helicopter's maximum speed is 144nm/hr. It would take the SH-3H:

1 hour and 15 minutes (no tail wind) to reach the crew that ejected;
15 minutes to recue both of them (if all went well and they were found right away), and
54 minutes to return to the CV, (assuming the Aircraft Carrier turned and headed straight towards them at maximum (34 knots) speed.

That's a minimum round trip time of 2 hours and 24 minutes from shoot-down / ejection to the SH-3H Helicopter returning to the CV...

I'm pretty sure they wouldn't have landed right after Maverick's and Ice Man's planes landed. Also, they would't be allowed to jump off the helicopter and do all of the high-fiving without Medical personnel first taking them to sick-bay for a check-up...
Thanks to Anonymous
When Charlie is in the classroom, she is wearing a white polo shirt. When she follows Maverick (before he revs his motorcycle) she is wearing a blouse that crosses in the front...

Bogus Blunders

Sometimes an apparent goof is not a real mistake

But, nothing bogus that we know yet for "Top Gun".
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1986 Paramount Pictures
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