Home > DVDs, Written Reviews, Written Reviews > “TOP GUN”, “DAYS OF THUNDER”, “WAR OF THE WORLDS” now on 4K



Three of Tom Cruise’s iconic films that pushed him to the top of his career have been released in separately on 4K home video. Now available for the first time is Top Gun (1986), Days of Thunder (1990) and War of the Worlds (2005) in the new Ultra HD format the highest resolution of 2160, twice that of the current Blu-ray of 1080p. The picture and sound quality are a far cry from what it seems not too long ago when Blu-ray took over for DVD.

Tom Cruise in Top Gun now in 4K from Paramount Pictures

Recently celebrating Top Gun’s 34th anniversary, this high energy film lead him into icon status following his quick star favorites Risky Business and All the Right Moves. No more a teenager, Cruise took on the role of Maverick, a hot rod pilot in the US Navy’s Fighter Weapons School nicknamed Top Gun. Along with rising stars Val Kilmer and Anthony Edwards the actors put on a great show of action, thrills and a three sided romance involving Kelly McGillis who just came off the blockbuster Witness. The cast also includes several upcoming actors like Tim Robbins (Bull Durham, The Shawshank Redemption) and Meg Ryan (When Harry Met Sally, Sleepless in Seattle, You’ve Got Mail).

Making everything a contest, Maverick (Tom Cruise) a new student in a world that deals in danger, he has hopes of becoming one of the elite fighter pilots and the challenges start early. When a romance involving Charlie (Kelly McGillis) becomes a problem with his training it leads Maverick to make some dangerous choices.

TOP GUN Special Bonus Features Include:
“On Your Six – Thirty Years of Top Gun”
“Danger Zone – The Making of Top Gun”
“Multi – Angle Storyboards”
“Best of the Best: Inside the Real Top Gun”
“Music Videos”
“Original Theatrical Promotional Material”
“Commentary by Producer Jerry Bruckheimer, Director Tony Scott, Co-screenwriter Jak Epps, Jr., and Naval Experts”

Tom Cruise in Days of Thunder now on 4K from Paramount Pictures

Also available for the first time on 4K Blu-ray is Days of Thunder the film that not only pushed the envelope with Cruise doing his own driving, but it’s where he met his female lead Nicole Kidman. During a filming run on the track Cruise’s car went out of control, but like in all his movies, he walked away with minor injuries. But, that never stopped Cruise from performing many of the stunts in future films especially the Mission Impossible franchise. His life with Nicole Kidman in marriage lasted about eleven years and they starred in several movies together besides this one. In fact his very next film Far and Away he co-stared with Kidman and the romance was hot and heavy. Then seven years later Eyes Wide Shut where the two played a married couple experimenting with sex things lead to their parting.

In Days of Thunder Cruise plays a NASCAR racing driver Cole Trickle who is more daring than his car owners and manager want him to be. His temper gets in the way of his driving and emotions fare up all around him. Taking more chances than he should, it puts him in a lot danger on the track. The story is actually really good and direction by Tony Scott keeps the film from getting out of control. Co-star John C. Reilly who plays Buck went on to play a NASCAR driver in the action comedy Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby. Also of note the “King” of NASCAR racing Richard Petty, thirty years younger, making an appearance in the film.

DAYS OF THUNDER Extras Include:
“Filmmaker Focus: Days of Thunder”
“Hans Zimmer Isolated Score Track”

Tom Cruise in War of the Worlds now on 4K from Paramount Pictures

In War of the Wolds, divorcee Ray gets home from work after doing a night shift at his job at the New Jersey shipyards to greet his pregnant ex-wife Mary Ann and her new husband Tim in his driveway. They’re dropping off his two children 10 year old Rachel and teenage Robbie for the weekend as was planned. Mary Ann and Tim are going to her mother’s house in Boston for the weekend and she’s very doubtful that the kids will have a good time. A day later with all the noise going on outside his apartment, Ray rushes into the street and sees a lot of commotion and an ominous storm building. As the roads start to cave in a metallic being rises from the ground. When things start to go haywire shutting down anything electric and with monstrous robots off in the distance, Rachel and Ray find themselves fleeing the city with Robbie and heading for safety to the interior of the state as aliens start to approach.

War of the Worlds was an interesting choice for Tom Cruise as he plays a character that cannot control the elements around him. His character is meant to be a guy who needs to learn how to be a father to his children and Cruise’s role looks like he just can’t figure a plan. All he knows is that he must get to Boston so he can drop off his children with their mother. He’s helpless in tight situations yet he may be the one man who can get his family to live though it all. However, it’s a different kind of role for Cruise that certainly is worth seeing. The film also features the first major feature for Dakota Fanning who plays the frightened Rachel as they travel to Boston. It also has a very scary scene with Tim Robbins as a distraught psycho hunkered down in a bunker that takes in Ray and Rachel during an assault by the alien tripods.

WAR OF THE WORLDS Bonus Features Include:
“Revisiting the Invasion”
“The H.G. Wells Legacy”
“Steven Spielberg and the Original War of the Worlds”
“Characters: the Family Unit”
“Production Diaries”
“Designing the Enemy: Tripods and Aliens”
“Scoring War of the Worlds”
“We are Not Alone”

All three films make a good addition to anyone’s video library, especially if you are now building a section for 4K. The clearly is very good, the dark shots easier to view and the sound quality, depending on your system and 4K TV, is amazing.

What makes this trio extra special however, is Tom Cruise grown up in these three 4K’s. He just came off his four 1981 teenager favorites; The Outsiders (co-starring with C. Thomas Howell, Matt Dillion, Ralph Macchio, Patrick Swayze, Rob Lowe, Emilio Estevez, Diane Lane, and Tom Waits), Risky Business (that featured his iconic dance in his underwear), Losing It (with Shelly Long and Jackie Earle Haley) and All the Right Moves (where High School Football was on his mind among other things). You can really see the star coming into his own. And if you want to be a collector of his movies you need to add his cameo role in Endless Love (starring Brooke Shields) followed that same year by a support role as a cadet in Taps.

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