Top Gun: Maverick is slated to open in US theaters on May 27 over Memorial Day weekend. It’s taken Tom Cruise 36 years to deliver a sequel to the Navy’s favorite film, so the anticipation is high.

Navy Fleet and Family shared the news that the service will have an opportunity to see the film early on May 21 or 22 in 31 on-base theaters across the country. We’ve got a full list of venues and times below, but make sure to confirm the performance with the theater box office to find out what you need to do to get tickets.

Of course, the Navy pretty much bought those 30 early screenings by giving producers Cruise and Jerry Bruckheimer an unprecedented collaboration. Legend has it that Navy recruitment increased by “500%” after the release of Top Gun in 1986, and the leadership seized the opportunity to support Top Gun: Maverick as best they could.

What did the service get for its investment? Top Gun: Maverick is an amazing movie, a refreshing counterpoint to all those comic books and sci-fi popcorn movies that just seem to exist to advance the plot so you can watch the next one again.

The film features incredible in-flight action, filmed in the cockpits of real flying fighter jets rather than on a green screen soundstage with computer effects. There’s a touching tale of the lifelong bond between Maverick (Tom Cruise) and Iceman (Val Kilmer), true love with the admiral’s daughter (Jennifer Connelly), and issues to be resolved with Goose’s son, Rooster (Miles Teller).

Will Top Gun: Maverick be the cultural phenomenon that the first film became in 1986? That seems impossible, as the world and films have changed in countless ways over the past 36 years. Is the new movie a better movie than the original Top Gun? Yes, it is. It’s an idea that would have seemed ridiculous a few years ago, but the team behind the new film really waited until they figured out a story worth telling before making a film.

See the film early in a Navy theater, but head back to a commercial theater in a few weeks for the full Dolby Cinema or IMAX experience. The action in Top Gun: Maverick is spectacular and at some point you’ll want to see it on the biggest screen with the best possible sound.

Here is the list of Navy shows.

May 21st

  • Bangor at 6pm (Cinema Plus Theater)
  • Camp Lejeune at 7pm (Base Theater)
  • Camp Pendleton at 1:30pm (Bulldog Box Office)
  • Dahlgren at 7pm (Base Theatre)
  • El Centro at 7pm (NAF Theater)
  • Fallon at 4 p.m. (Desert Moon Theater)
  • Gulfport at 6 p.m. (SeeBee Theater)
  • Kings Bay at 6pm (The Box Office Theatre)
  • Kodiak at 7 p.m. (Billiken Theater)
  • Lemoore at 6pm (MWR Theater)
  • Little Creek at 5 p.m. (Gator Theater)
  • Miramar at 6pm (Bob Hope Theater)
  • New London at 7pm (Dealey Center Theatre)
  • New River at 4 p.m. (Station Theater)
  • Oceana at 1pm (Aero Theater)
  • Patuxent River at 6:00 p.m. (Center Stage Theater)
  • Pearl Harbor at 7 p.m. (Sharkey Theater)
  • Pensacola at 11 a.m. (Portside Cinema)
  • Port Hueneme at 2pm (Needham Theatre)
  • Quantico at 6 p.m. (Little Hall Theater)
  • San Diego at 6 p.m. (Base Theater)
  • Whidbey Island at 6pm (Skywarrior Theatre)
  • Yuma at 6 p.m. (Station Theater)

May 22

  • 29 Palms at 5pm (Sunset Cinema)
  • Cherry Point at 4:00 p.m. (Two Rivers Theater)
  • Fort Worth at 2pm (Movie Reel Theatre)
  • Great Lakes at 7pm (Epicenter Theatre)
  • Kaneohe Bay at 12pm (K Bay Theatre)
  • North Island at 1:00 p.m. (Lowry Theatre)
  • Parris Island at 3pm (Depot Theater)
  • Yorktown at 6:30 p.m. (Washington Auditorium)

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