Not enough movies have a theme song these days. There’ll be some orchestral melody you hear a few times, or they’ll co-opt an existing song like The Batman did, but it seems rare to hear a famous artist write and record a hot new track explicitly for a movie in 2022, especially if it’s not a movie about music. Luckily, with Top Gun: Maverick already being an explicit ‘80s throwback since it’s a 30-years-later sequel to an iconic ‘80s movie (one that maybe didn’t deserve a sequel), it has now gone a step further by getting a famous artist—Lady Gaga, in this case—to write and record a cheesy Top Gun-ass ballad.
The song is called “Hold My Hand,” and while it’s no “Danger Zone,” it does have a nice melodramatic “Take My Breath Away”-like quality to it. Both of those songs have aged about as well as… well, Top Gun itself, but they were outrageously big hits at the time. Lady Gaga’s song probably won’t have that staying power, because it was written for the 30-years-later Top Gun sequel, but in the interest of being extremely generous (so much so that we expect a Christmas card from Gaga this year), we would like to note that there are some Jim Steinman-esque flourishes to “Hold My Hand.” It would need to be 100 percent more melodramatic if it wanted to come anywhere near the real Steinman, but it’s as close as we can get now.
Pitchfork says that Gaga teased that she’s been working on this song “for years,” which makes sense since the people who made Top Gun: Maverick had also been working on it for years (since the movie was delayed a bunch of times because of the COVID-19 pandemic).