BY CHRISTOPHER HASKELL
OCTOBER 19, 2013
Male strippers. You’re on board, or you’re not. Regardless, Steven Soderbergh steps behind this female fantasy inducing feature “Magic Mike” which is also a partial biopic about the early life of lead actor Channing Tatum. Relying heavily on the dances of the men involved, if you have any reservations about Chippendale dancers, steer clear of this film, because there’s no missing the thrusting crotches and constantly male butt cheeks involved. All skin aside, “Magic Mike” does have a softer side, with Mike’s (Tatum) relationships outside of work and his aspirations beyond just being a male revue dancer. The progression of Alex Pettyfer as Adam “The Kid” is entertaining enough, as he steps in the male stripping world at nineteen and becomes a drug-selling mess of bad ideas and trouble.
Mike eventually forms a natural connection with Adam’s sister, Brooke (Cody Horn). Together, Horn and Tatum produce very realistic chemistry with a shot selection and dialogue that creates a lifelike dynamic to their connection. Either Tatum is a very natural actor, who can deliver like they’re his very own words, or he’s just decent at projecting his actual personality with no acting needed. Either way, his performance is believable, and with Matthew McConaughey and Olivia Munn delivering above-average, they’re able to keep Tatum above-par. “Magic Mike” ascends above its stigma. It gives another unique prerogative from eclectic director Soderbergh. Despite its extremely in-depth journey into the male revue’s world, there is a strong dramatic sense at its core.
June 29, 2012
Warner Bros. Pictures
(for pervasive sexual content, brief graphic nudity, language and some drug use)