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  • Haunted by feelings of guilt over the actions of his father Buzz and having been kicked out of the navy, Topper Harley has withdrawn from the navy to a life of solitude, quiet contemplation and helium. However when Lt Commander Block comes to him with an offer of a second chance, to take part in secret mission Sleepy Weasel, Topper takes it up and signs up for training and briefing with the other pilots. However with a difficult love interest and his old fears resurfacing, can Topper hold it together? Can the mission succeed? Can Admiral Benson get it together? Only time, will tell.

    The spoof genre is one that appears easy to do but things like Scary Movie, Spaceballs and others all show that it is not as easy as it appears – it is not enough to simply ape films unless it is done cleverly and funnily as well. Hot Shots succeeds in this area by managing to make such fun out of serious films that it is hard not to laugh – in fact I watched Top Gun recently and found it impossible not to laugh as I remembered Hot Shots! Of course it is not just the fact that it spoofs movies but also that the dialogue is really, really funny – totally off the wall and takes you by surprise at times. A fine example of this is the dialogue given to Admiral Benson such as 'they ran out of material before they got to the knee so don't give me any sh*t'! This continues throughout the film and it rarely misses. Just like Top Gun the romance aspect isn't as funny as the other bits but even then it is still good. Some individual lines aren't as sharp as others but generally the film has enough great dialogue and funny movie spoofs (including quite a few Tom Cruise movies) to be consistently funny even after repeat viewings.

    The cast is often important in this type of thing and those who have suffered the Wayans brothers mugging in their 'spoofs' will know exactly what I mean – people like Leslie Nielsen make it look easy but it really isn't. And that is why the cast here should be largely praised for their straight delivery that serves to make the material even better. Although not the star of the film, every scene he is in is stolen by Lloyd Bridges – so great in Airplane, he gets the best lines here and his character is hilarious. He is supported well by Sheen who proves really able in sending himself up and he has done well in other spoofs since then. The rest of the cast is made up of very familiar faces who all seem in tune with the material provided – Elwes is fun; Cryer and O'Leary embrace their one-note characters. Golino is a bit dry in her delivery and doesn't help her already weak part in the film. Minor roles for Swanson, Stiles, Dunn and others are also good value for differing reasons and there are a few good cameos in there as well.

    Overall, as with all these things you need to be in the mood but the strength of the material and the high hit ratio makes it easy to enjoy this film. Much more fun that Top Gun and consistently funny with regular laugh-out-loud moments this is a great spoof that is only just short of the greats like Airplane and Naked Gun.
  • Jim Abrahams' first solo comedy effort Hot Shots! is a smash comedy that has many, many laughs and is as silly as anything Abrahams has done with his uoltra successful team of ZAZ (Zucker Abrahams and Zucker) which made Airplane, Top Secret, The Naked Gun and The Kentucky Friend Movie. Hot Shots deserves a place with them.

    Charlie Sheen plays a top gun type of charater that is trying to go against his father's reputation and still be able to fly and fight and all. The movie however doesn't try and go with the plot, which is always good in these movies, and it succeeds in bringing silly, goofy laughs just by having Lloyd Bridges act totally and utterly hilariously insane, or in just having a pilot with moose antlers. Deadpan. A
  • Hot Shots is one of my favorite movies when it comes to comedy. It was made in a time that farting and burping weren't yet considered as the very best humor has to offer.

    This film is very enjoyable when you don't know any of the movies this parody has been based on (very hard to believe), but when you do know the movies, Hot Shots is really hilarious from time to time. Most of the time they make fun of Top Gun, but movies like Superman, Dances with Wolves, Gone with the Wind... can be recognized in it as well.

    Topper Harley is an excellent pilot who left the navy because he couldn't cope with the feelings of guilt over his father. His father didn't do enough to help his co-pilot during a mission and the poor man got killed in an awful way. When he found out, Topper decided never to fly again. He now lives on his own with an Indian and a wolf, inhaling helium. However, when Lt Commander Block offers a second chance, to take part in secret mission Sleepy Weasel, Topper decides to fly again, although this means that he'll have to deal with a difficult love interest and his old fears.

    This movie certainly scores above average when you ask me. Therefor I reward it with a 7.5/10.
  • I watched this movie after watching a really poorly made one, so this film came off like Citizen Kane in many respects. After not watching this film for such a long time, I came into this viewing wit ha more trained eye, and to say the least, it was as good then as it is now. This is easily one of those parody movies that will live forever, especially due to all of the great scenes on the aircraft carriers (dogs chasing the plane, the dancing, etc.). While the film did have its dull moments, there were too many funny moments. Charlie Sheen seemed perfect for this role, simply because it looked like he tackled this movie with a serious purpose. Cary Elwes was also good, considering the stuffy Brit took on the whole comedy role quite well. Kudos to all who had a hand in this film.
  • kosmasp27 May 2021
    I should have rewatched Top Gun before seeing this ... I did hold back on that to make it a "double feature" when the second Top Gun movie finally gets its theatrical release .. you know when Cinemas reopen and all that. You can still see that it spoofs that Tom Cruise and Val Kilmer (gay?) bromance . Now don't get overexcited or offended - the undertones are there and they get spoofed here. If you are easily offended maybe do not watch this movie. Though you'd be missing out on many good jokes - from one third of the Zaz team ... he knows his stuff for sure! And the cast is amazing too.

    Bridges is on a roll here, as is Sheen and the others. The erotic scene of the movie is exactly that by the way ... hot and steamy, but also super funny. I sort of miss those cool spoof movies ... you could tell they loved movies and didn't just make fun of anything they saw ... there was much love ... and ridiculous insanity included.
  • TheOtherFool6 July 2004
    Really funny movie spoofs Top Gun, Dances With Wolves and others. In the centre is Topper Harley (Charlie Sheen), who is incapable of flying because he thinks his dad is responsible for the death of his co-pilot.

    But one day he is called back into the squad, as there is a scheme going on about some new airplanes. Oh well, never mind that.

    Funny stuff all the time, too much to talk about really. I love the 'Dead Meat' character, when he is taking his last flight, claiming he knows the answers to global warmth and Kennedy's assasination. That really cracked me up.

    One of the best spoofs ever. 7/10.
  • I'm not sure why, but I guess I was interested in seeing the first Hot Shots since my mom only has the sequel and I noticed the movie in Blockbuster, I also love Charlie Sheen in comedies, he works so well in spoofs. Not to mention all in all, I do love spoofs, most work for me. It's just the kind comedy that I like. Hot Shots! proved itself to be a worthy spoof that is more than worth watching. It spoofs Top Gun, An Officer and a Gentleman, 9 1/2 Weeks, Gone with the Wind, Rocky, among many other movies.

    Topper is a pilot who is wanted back in the navy and falls for a woman, but he has an edge is considered a rebel. Cary Elwes gives him a hard time constantly, especially since his father caused Cary's father to have a freak plane accident. Cary is also in love with Topper's woman and wants revenge.

    Hot Shots is a great comedy that I have to admit is a guilty pleasure, but it has so much that most comedies lack now a days. It's just a fun innocent movie that deserves a little bit of a higher rating. Charlie Sheen rocks in comedies, although they have destroyed my new favorite guilty pleasure, 9 1/2 Weeks, it's all good.

  • I get a kick out of these hit and miss comedy tributes to recent films. The more sight gags and ridiculous comments they can make, the more fun. I think the classic for this will always be the first "Airplane" movie. In this one, Charlie Sheen reprises Tom Cruise's character from "Top Gun." When the eggs started frying on that girl's body, I nearly fell off my chair. Not to mention that the plot itself and the mission involved are absolutely ridiculous. Except for the fact that they could not be anything else. The inimitable Charlie Sheen with his over-confidence and his somewhat bewildered look is the perfect choice for this. He has that handsomeness that works in this role. If you want to laugh out loud, take a chance.
  • Here's the basic formula for dissecting this film: If "Airplane" spoofed a single film (in this case "Top Gun") instead of an entire genre (disaster films), you'd get "Hot Shots".

    For a basic plot summary, "Hot Shots" basically spoofs the movie "Top Gun" with any and all types of sight gags included. Charlie Sheen, Valeria Golino, Cary Elwes, and Lloyd Bridges provide the starring roles, and are all hilarious in every scene they carry.

    For some people, this type of humor is childish and won't elicit much more than a simple chuckle. For others (myself included), though, the sight gags and hilarious physical comedy will have you in tears of laughter. The chemistry between Sheen and Golino is incredible, Elwes is at his maniacal best, while Bridges basically steals the show as the hilarious old general who always seems to save the day in the end.

    This is a film that is kind of hard to explain in print. You really just need to sit down and watch it to determine if it is the right kind of comedy for you. You'll know within the first few minutes.
  • Hot Shots is one of the funniest films I have ever seen in my life. I laughed so much it nearly made me sick to my stomach. There's really no better proof of a great comedy than when you laugh from beginning to end. Lloyd Bridges is hilarious and Charlie Sheen is really great at these type of films. The whole cast is great. Jim Abrahams has made a modern classic in my opinion.
  • no-40612 February 2006
    It's 2006 and I still believe this is one of the best parodies of all times, worth to include next to Spaceballs, Naked Gun and Scary Movie (all 3 of them).

    From time to time I like watching such movies, since I'm sick and tired of all the modern "shoot 'em up" or "philosophy for n00bs" type of films. It's relaxing and a good laugh always makes you forget about everything else.

    Now that was besides the point. Getting back to "Hot Shots", I can say only one thing - excellent. And to be honest, every movie that starred Charlie Sheen I've seen since was dull. Maybe it's a little unfair to remember Charlie Sheen only for this role (he's a very good actor), but he was so...funny in it that I can't help it. The movie itself is very well glued together, the scenes are dubbed with the perfect soundtrack to make you laugh 'till you fall off your chair and the comedy techniques are (as somebody said before me) classic - no fart/burp jokes or toilet humor.

    Overall, I'd watch it anytime.
  • I know Hot Shots is a dumb movie, but it's the good kind of dumb that makes me laugh. Charlie Sheen is playing his role as Topper Harley so seriously that this could have been a drama, but the jokes are just too quick and too plentiful. This lampoons a number of movies, and features some gags that I laugh at just thinking about them. This spoof film flies high above the others.
  • damianphelps15 January 2021
    There a a stack of these kinds of movies, Airplane, Naked Gun, Top Secret, Hot Shots is up there with the best of them.

    The chose an excellent target to spoof in Top Gun as it gave them plenty of material. Charlie Sheen is great in this, it was made back before he was 'winning' lol.

    However for mine, Jon Cryer absolutely steals the show with his 'wall-eye' vision, it never, never gets old!!

    Brilliant fun :).
  • SnoopyStyle2 August 2014
    It's parody of "Top Gun" from Jim Abrahams of "Airplane!" and "Naked Gun". Lt. Topper Harley (Charlie Sheen) is the Maverick character who is struggling with his father's history. Lt. Kent Gregory (Cary Elwes) is the Iceman character. Ramada Thompson (Valeria Golino) is Topper's psychiatrist. Jim 'Wash Out' Pfaffenbach (Jon Cryer) suffers from walleye vision. Pete 'Dead Meat' Thompson (William O'Leary) is ... well ... dead meat. Adm. Thomas Benson (Lloyd Bridges) is their clueless commanding officer. Lt. Cmdr. James Block (Kevin Dunn) is trying to create problems so that they get new planes with help from the manufacturer.

    This is a much more sillier movie. The jokes aren't all good. I actually liked the 'Elephant with 3 balls' joke because it plays on a couple of different levels. The jokes are cute but they don't really get a big laugh. It's generally smirk worthy. It's a decline in quality from earlier excellence.
  • I've never seen "Top Gun", but as far as I'm concerned, "Hot Shots!" is sufficient! Since this is from the guys who gave us "Airplane!", that should tell you everything about it. There is actually a plot: loner Topper Harley (Charlie Sheen) goes into the air force, and a series of goofy things ensue. But don't let that fool you. Just sit back and enjoy the gags (the one about the relatives should send you off the walls).

    As far as I'm concerned, Charlie Sheen really does work best in these kinds of roles. Also starring Cary Elwes, Valeria Golino, Lloyd Bridges. The sequel was absurd, but still quite funny.
  • This is a comedy from Jim Abrahams, spoofing Top Gun in which unstable fighter pilot Topper Harley (Charlie Sheen) tries to complete his mission of destroying the Iraqi dictator's nuclear plants.

    It's non-stop laughs from start to finish, from unending gags to hilarious spoofs of movies such as Top Gun, Superman and Gone with the Wind. The acting was great, each character delivering funny performances that made the plot entertaining and engaging. I especially liked Lloyd Bridge's clueless and comedic performance as the incompetent Adm. Thomas Benson.

    This movie is not so much dumb as is pure fun and entertainment, as all the characters acted seriously on their "missions." The film has a fast-paced plot and story nonetheless, despite all the spoofed humor. It's a great comedy - ranking up there with the Naked Gun and Airplane films!

    Grade A
  • With the success of "Airplane!" came many other similar style films. Some were by the same folks who made "Airplane!", such as "Hot Shots!", and many were by wannabes....who generally came up very short in bringing off such a rapid-fire comedy. While not quite as funny as "Airplane!", I think "Hot Shots!" is probably about as close as they got to recapturing the style and humor...along with "Airplane! 2".

    This film is a send off of "Top Gun". Through the course of the film, all sorts of crazy and silly stuff happens...but there really isn't much of a plot until the film is mostly over...and I can live with that! One joke after another after another...with most of them working....this is a very funny I strongly recommend if you are feeling down and need a laugh.
  • After finishing up a gig on the Space Shuttle in Houston, I called Billy (Aerial Unit) and he says "We can use a guy your size, come on out!". So I was an extra: A Carrier Deck Hand, Iraqi Soldier, they guy who holds up the weight sign to the pilot, etc. Then one day Matthew the 2nd AD is looking for Charlie to set up a scene and says "Go tell Wardrobe to put you in Charlie's dress white's and get out here, we gotta set up this scene and Charlie's shooting another scene right now". So I did, and then became his Stand-In from there.

    Got to meet some of the great actors like Lloyd Bridges & Ephraim Zimbalist Jr. before they both passed on, Charlie Sheen (of course) and John Cryer. I picked John up in my old yellow Cadillac Sedan one day while he was walking across the set in the rain. Told him to sit in the back "Limo" style! All were very nice to me, and very humble.

    Back at Bill's (Badalato - EXP) house while he is cooking pasta for me and his son Billy (Aerial) I look on the table and there is a small leather bound photo album with the smallest gold letters that say "Top Gun". I look through it and there are all these Polaroids of the cast and crew in goofy poses on the set of Top Gun. Nothing big, nothing fancy, just your "typical" photo album sitting on the coffee table! Such great and humble Men and Women, from Bill, Billy, Doc, Richard, Lloyd, Charlie, John, Christie and Valeria et al. In fact, Billy had me shoot a spoof of Bill's (nonexistent) "Ego" where the cast all played along in the video. Went to Lloyd Bridges home and shot a very dramatic clip of Lloyd talking about Bill and his devotion to family (meaning also his "Film Family"). Charlie joked (in his clip) that Bill was so uptight and difficult to work with and that Bill (who is bald) had "hair" at the start of the picture! All great people! And I got to flirt with Valeria while we were eating a couple of times since I spoke a little Italian :-)

    Phil Bautista, Austin TX
  • I think this was a decent send-up of the Top Gun movies and other films as well. (Dances With Wolves, etc.) There are many hilarious scenes, such as Jon Cryer's "Wall Vision" and Charlie Sheen's Indian nickname translating as "Fluffy Bunny Feet." You know something bad and funny is going to happen when Dead Meat reveals all that he's carrying-right before he goes on a mission. Charlie Sheen gives a truly hilarious performance as Topper-a man on a mission, in more ways than one. The Superman and Dances With Wolves scenes are inspiringly funny, and the movie was overall a good one. I recommend this to anyone who likes comedies and spoofs.
  • Part of why Hot Shots! Works is that the actors are good and take it seriously. Charlie Sheen and Cary Elwes are talented actors who have been in many good and serious films, along with much of the rest of the cast. It's much funnier when ridiculous and immature lines and jokes are delivered seriously, as if the characters are completely oblivious to the jokes. It also means what little of the story there is can at least be appreciated, although it's 99% farce.

    So it all comes down to the jokes themselves. Some miss but there are a lot of gags and most of them hit. I was laughing out loud for a lot of the movie. Much of the formula is simple but very effective. Take an aspect of a normal situation. Gradually make it a little sillier, but where it's still plausible. And then smoothly transition into a more ridiculous situation until it makes no sense at all, but treat it all seriously. For example, troops training outside are first doing push-ups and star-jumps and after a few cuts and slightly weirder activities, they're doing a kicking line. It makes no sense, but it's funny. Because it's predictable but also can sometimes be subtle, that makes it even funnier.

    Many of the gags are also clever, even while being stupid. For instance, characters going outside a jet to fix it while it's flying. Or unconventional manoeuvres to defeat enemy fighter jets. It all breaks the laws of physics but it's only slightly more zany than a lot of real action movies. You realise the filmmakers had a lot of imagination to think of such things. And on the surface, it seems plausible that such things could be done, especially from a kid's point of view. The rules have a kind of logic to them.

    Another important aspect is the tone. This movie is fun. It isn't trying too hard, nor is it a bunch of lazy unconnected jokes strung together. The people who made it tried to get the most out of every idea and they had some very funny ideas, even if others fall flat. It isn't mean-spirited, it makes fun of all kinds of people and situations in light-hearted ways. It also has some action, singing, romance and sexy moments to make it more entertaining.

    I haven't seen Top Gun in a long time but I found it to be pretty bland and dated. Hot Shots! Seems to match it in costumes, acting, plot, etc., but doesn't take itself seriously at all. It mocks all kinds of movies in immature ways but it does it well. Especially if you're a film buff it becomes all the funnier because you know what they're making fun of and begin realise more than usual how silly so many other movies actually are. It's one of the better spoof movies out there, a genre with a lot of garbage unfortunately.
  • I'm not really sure how it is that I'd seen "Part Deux" a good five or six times as a teenager but never the first one. The humor in "Hot Shots" is as broad as possible, always trafficking in outright silliness. In that regard, not all of the jokes work, but the ones that do are knee-slappers. And Lloyd Bridges is comedy gold, I mean the man doesn't have one line that isn't a scream.

    And the humor doesn't even stop until the credits are done. Gotta respect that.

  • I bought this in Tesco for a tiny sum of £4.00 because i heard that it was really good, it has an 81% "Fresh" rating on Rotten Tomatoes and was a box office success, grossing over $180,000,000.There you are kids, a bit of history, tell your friends!

    It took me a while (about 15 minutes) to get into the films humour, the jokes at the start produce giggles, some were just unfunny but as the film progressed the jokes got funnier and i was starting to see the good film that the critics were talking about!

    I'd love to spoil some of the funniest lines but, i'm not gonna, there are some real corkers in this film.

    What scores this film more points is that it was short, only 80 minutes or so, so it doesn't drag on and get old.

    Maybe i'm only giving this film a 7 because i missed some of the sight gags or something, i don't know. I'll still be buying "Part Deux" if i see it in the shops though, it's probably worth it.

    So the bottom line is "Don't Shop For It, Argos it!" no wait that's not right.....hold on, i'll get it......AH! The Bottom line is:

    This film is funny, some good one-liners, sure, i wasn't laughing till there were tears in my eyes (i've only did THAT in a couple of films) but i was still chuckling along with the film, it's not a classic but it's still very good and the jokes will stay in my head for a while, as a famous person said about another film "It's impossible not to laugh!"

  • Having seen the terrific "Airplane!" and "The Naked Gun," I felt like there was very little "need" to make "Hot Shots!," a spoof of "Top Gun" and other military and non-military movies. Its predecessors targeted entire genres that deserved to be made fun of: disaster movies ("Airplane!") and cop movies/TV shows ("The Naked Gun"). "Hot Shots!" takes aim at too broad a spectrum and despite a few good performances is really just that same old subtle and literal humor from two of the writers of those previous fantastic spoof movies, Jim Abrahams and Pat Proft.

    The plot is incredibly immaterial in "Hot Shots!" Anyone used to watching one of the spoof movies from these writers is trained by now to look for the jokes hidden throughout. In "Hot Shots!" more of those jokes are forced in and don't tie in to the plot that they completely detract from it. I can't say I gave the film a concerted effort, but I don't remember what it was about other than ace pilot Topper Harley (Charlie Sheen) being afraid to fly because of the death of his father.

    Sheen, although not bad, is also not the type of comedian to best handle this kind of material. He's no Leslie Nielsen in "The Naked Gun" and not even really a Robert Hays ("Airplane!") who might not be as good an actor in general, but knew how to play this kind of humor. Part of this could be that his character is written to be a hot shot, but either way it just doesn't make "Hot Shots!" lovable.

    Still good for those one-time laughs when you catch a clever or ridiculous joke, "Hot Shots!" is not a failure by any means, just same old, same old. Topper cooking breakfast on Valeria Golino's midriff instead of a sex scene is remarkably crazy and hilarious and being from the Midwest, I appreciated that the Native American language consisted mostly of towns in Wisconsin. Any film attributed to Abrahams, Proft or the Zuckers is always going to have its gems, but "Hot Shots!" as an overall film doesn't work as well as the classics they churned out in the '80s.
  • Hot Shots! (1991) was another solo effort from Z.A.Z. member Jim Abrahams. In keeping with the tone of his other films, the humor is just like that of Airplane! and Top Secret! This time, Jim Abrahams takes on the Top Gun films and others of it's ilk. Charlie Sheen stars whilst Valeria Golino, Cary Elwes, Jon Cryer and Lloyd Bridges co-star. But like it's brethren the humor is real dated and some of the jokes don't work like they used to. But I wouldn't miss watching it again if it was on the idiot box. I wonder what the film would have been like if the Z.A.Z. team worked on it? Followed by Hot Shots! Part Deux.

    Recommended for laughs.
  • This is one of the best in its genre, giving you lots of laughs from the beginning till the end. There is both slapstick humor and spoof humor, misunderstanding humor and just hilarious humor. Charlie Sheen as the thrown out, return to save them all pilot Topper Harley. One of Charlie Sheen's best movies, if not the best.
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