Paramount bring Tom Cruise classics to 4K for the first time

There are few stars as big as Tom Cruise. While these days he is most connected with his massive hit franchise Mission Impossible, for years he had a string of hits in all sorts of genres. Now Paramount is bringing his classics Days of Thunder, War of the Worlds and Top Gun to 4K for the first time. These have been reviewed numerous times, but the question now is how to they hold up and look in Ultra HD?

Days of Thunder follows Cole Trickle who enters the high-pressure world of Nascar racing. He's a hot driver with a hot temper, and this attitude gets him into trouble not only with other drivers, but members of his own team as well. I was never a big fan of these older Tom Cruise films. They grew on me as I got older and this one, which is essentially Top Gun on the race track, is a great one. Revisiting it reminded me how great this movie is and it holds up well. The already excellently shot race sequences are made all the better with this new 4K upgrade. The film itself looks great and really should be seen in HD as it intensifies the action and scope.

 

While Cruise is great here, it’s Robert Duvall that steals it for me. He is so great here and the chemistry with cruise makes this film work so great. The supporting cast including Randy Quaid, Michael Rooker and John C. Reilly are all great here and help to bring this whole world together to perfection. I honestly don’t know why I failed to connect with this movie when it came out, but I am officially converted.  

War of the Worlds follows Ray Ferrier, a dockworker living in New Jersey, divorced from his first wife Mary Ann and estranged from his two children Rachel and Robbie, of whom he has custody on weekends. On one such visitation, looking after the kids becomes a little more difficult when, after a series of strange lighting storms hit his neighborhood, Ray discovers that a fleet of death-ray robotic spaceships have emerged nearby, part of the first wave of an all-out alien invasion of the Earth. Transporting his children from New York to Boston in an attempt to find safety at Mary Ann's parents' house, Ray must learn to become the protector and provider he never was in marriage.

 

Cruise had a string of sci-fi flicks that were really good with this one being one my favorites. I know it’s not filled with the usual bad ass Cruise, but the more real life aspect during the invasion worked for me. Sure it’s over the top in its execution at often times convient set ups, but it’s visual style and almost natural disaster direction to the invasion just made it work for me. With the 4K treatment I was worried if the effects might not hold up, but they look great. I haven’t watched this film in years and found it just as fun as when I saw it the first time. This is one that really needed the 4K treatment and worth revisiting.

Top Gun follows Pete Mitchell, code named Maverick, the impetuous daredevil Navy-pilot ace who is accepted into Miramar's elite Fighter School, also known as "Top Gun". There, as the impulsive pilot competes with the best of the best, not only will he meet Charlie, the flying school's curvaceous astrophysics instructor, but also the brilliant and highly competitive fellow student, "Iceman", with whom right from the start, he will engage in a reckless contest. As Maverick is haunted by his father's mysterious death, will he be able to suppress his wild nature to win the prestigious Top Gun Trophy? I never understood the appeal to this movie and spent years telling people how I thought this movie just wasn’t good. Over the last couple of years I have changed my tune and found an appreciation to what it is much like Days of Thunder. While I think Days of Thunder is a better film Top Gun does stand on its own as something special.

This is yet another that is built for the HD release. The visuals and action of the film is stepped up to the next level in this 4K release to fully immerse you into the action. Across the board this film delivers and while the action is what really 

helps it to stand out it’s the performances that make it stand out. The entire cast are great with all of them having great chemistry both good and bad across the board. Revisiting this one not only further cements my new appreciation of the film but also excitement to see the highly anticipated sequel Top Gun: Maverick.

All three of these releases not only offer up excellent 4K HD transfers of these classic films, but varying bonus content both old and new. This will no doubt be must haves for fans of Cruise and his classic flicks so grab your copies of Top Gun, Days of Thunder and War of the Worlds available now on 4K Ultra HD for the first time ever from Paramount Home Entertainment.

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