Review: Magic Mike (2012)

“You are the husband they never had! You are that dreamboat guy that never came along!”

Set in the world of male strippers, Magic Mike is directed by Steven Soderbergh and stars Channing Tatum in a story inspired by his real life. The film follows Mike (Tatum) as he takes a young dancer called The Kid (Pettyfer) under his wing and schools him in the fine arts of partying, picking up women, and making easy money. – ROTTEN TOMATOES

Magic Mike is a drama/comedy film that is set around the world of male strippers or ‘male revue’ as it’s called. The film stars Channing Tatum with Steven Soderbergh in charge of direction. The film is loosely based on Tatum’s own experiences as a stripper in Tampa, Florida when he was 19 years old. Now I know I’m not clearly the target audience but ever since I saw the trailer I was intrigued by this film for a number of reasons. Firstly Channing Tatum has impressed me now, especially from 21 Jump Street which came out a few months ago in which he was a revelation. And secondly Steven Soderbergh who knows how to tell a good story and has a unique style which I like.

Now, this is gonna come as a shock but I rather enjoyed Magic Mike. Aside from the reasons I wanted to see it anyway I was still skeptic with the amount of crotches being gyrated into my face on the big screen, all I can be thankful is that this film wasn’t in 3D! Might of gone blind otherwise. But beneath the colourful nightlife and vibrant club scene lies a decent drama and story.

On the acting side most of the cast were pretty decent. Tatum, who plays Mike was very natural, charming and believable. This has been a good year for the man and I hope he continues now to challenge himself with different roles than resorting to rom-coms all the time. Equally as good if not better was Matthew McConaughey as the ringleader for the strip club who goes by the name Dallas. I know we all joke about McConaughey being shirtless in every film he’s basically been in, regardless of what it is but in Magic Mike it’s ironically acceptable. He’s having such a turn around and is pumping out great films after great films, truly the resurgence of the man.

Alex Pettyfer, who plays Adam was pretty stock if you ask me. Nothing special or outstanding about his performance but generally an unlikable character. Olivia Munn appears through the film has she and Mike enjoy some loose fun with each other, it’s a small role for her which to be honest isn’t worth writing about in all honestly. Now to the worst part of Magic Mike, this falls down to Cody Horn who is the ‘love interest’. She is utterly, utterly dreadful. I thought Olivia Williams was terrible in Cowboys & Aliens but Cody Horn takes the trophy so far. She has no charm, charisma or talent and is seriously out of her depth in this film. She just can’t act and just stands there with a blank, vague expression on her face.

Overall I found Magic Mike more enjoyable than I expected. It’s a solid story with good drama and is surprisingly funny to boot, I laughed a fair few times. Obviously it’s aimed more to the female market and a lot of those would get more out of the film than others but there is plenty on offer for the rest of us that isn’t flesh on a stage.

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