‘Magic Mike’ is nothing more than a top-notch peep show, it tries very hard to be much more than that but it simply fails. I would say this is the cheapest way to enjoy a male strip show rather than going to a strip club, because that part of the movie is a guaranteed good time. The movie definitely out does itself with all the butt shots and fun sexy shirtless moments; honestly that’s what most people are going to check out this movie for anyway. I would definitely suggest leaving your boyfriend home for this one, so you can enjoy all the eye candy without being pinched every five seconds.
The story is divided between Mike (Channing Tatum) and Adam (Alex Pettyfer). Basically, Mike who is an entrepreneur and holds a handful of part-time jobs, the most prominent being a male stripper, decides to take nineteen year old Adam who he nicknames “Kid” under his wing. Adam is a screw up at everything he does, his lifeline is his sister Brooke (Cody Horn), but thanks to Magic Mike’s guidance he finds something that motivates him. Magic Mike entered the world of male stripping thanks to Dallas (Matthew McConaughey) owner of club Xquisite, in Tampa. Here Magic Mike and newcomer Kid show their talent, along with: Big Dick Richie (Joe Manganiello), Ken (Matt Bomer), Tito (Adam Rodriguez) and Tarzan (Kevin Nash), they perform to the music of Tobias (Gabriel Iglesias). Slowly we explore the nightlife these male strippers lead and all the ups and downs that come along with that.
Director Steven Soderbergh worked off Tatum’s idea, which became one of the producers of the movie that stem off the fact that he was a male stripper for eight months when he was 18 years old. To compose a rounder idea they decided to portray a young newcomer versus a thirty year old experienced headlining stripper. The idea works, since this is the only real believable connection in the film. It was interesting to see that despite all the fun, most of these characters are lonely and have almost like a “rockstar” kind of life. There are certainly a number of funny moments that will make you giggle, some that will make you drool, and others that will make you cheer.
The other connection they work very hard at is between Tatum and Horn, although she’s the biggest obstacle of the film and she serves her purpose it feels too forced and awkward most of the time. But, the thing that bothered me most about the film was the way it was edited, it had a timeline, which served as a way to cut up the movie into chapters, but it was distracting and rushed the movie along especially at the end.
There are no great acting performances here, except for McConaughey who really knows how to play a controlling nut, besides that the only great performances happen on stage. Without a doubt Tatum delivers every time the spotlight is on him and it is time to seduce, but he has yet to convince me that he’s more than a pretty face. It was nice to have comedian Iglesias play one of the most serious roles of the film, although it’s such a hidden and unexplored story.
Perhaps if the film had focused on the title the plot would have been more interesting, as Tatum’s character clearly has layers to work with. It would have been nice to have a fun time along with a sensible storyline, but not all is perfect in life. So, enjoy the entertaining yummy peep show and try to overlook everything else that surrounds it.