Thursday, July 5, 2012

Magic Mike Review

Well I feel vindicated.  After repeated disappointments from the movies I was so excited about this summer, I am thrilled to report that my ticket to Magic Mike was worth every penny . . . or dollar bill stuffed into a male thong.

For months  (literally I have been talking about this movie since last fall) I've told everyone that this movie is going to be awesome.  And not just because it takes place in my hometown, and not just because Channing Tatum, Matthew McConaughey, and Alex Pettyfer are dancing around naked.  Because I knew it was going to be more than a movie about male strippers.  And just as Joe Manganiello's character "Big D Richie" promises, it was a lot more.  Okay, enough with the stripper jokes.

Obviously the Xquisite club in Tampa featuring an all male revue is a huge part (I'm so sorry, last one) of Magic Mike and those scenes elicited more than a few squeals and cheers from the female members of the theater.  However, Olivia Munn showed up topless within the first few minutes and my boyfriend cheered for that so you know, equality all around.

 But Magic Mike is also about youth, identity, partying, drugs, sex and living in Florida.  And the movie somehow manages to tackle all of these topics with humor and thoughtful consideration; sans judgement.  Many of the early reviews criticized that Magic Mike starts out as a fun romp but loses its stamina ( I guess can't stop making sex jokes) once the plot takes a dark, drug-filled twist.  I completely disagree.  This is what keeps the movie gritty and compelling.  Without these conflicts, Magic Mike would simply be a more naked version of Step Up.  Which, come to think of it, is a pretty good idea.

Unfortunately Magic Mike was marketed as a movie for tipsy women to watch with their friends and fantasize about the hot guys on screen.  That sounds like a blast, but if you strip away (I'm on a roll!) the gratuitous shots of butts and biceps, Magic Mike is about guys drinking on the beach by day, and partying with girls who want to rip their clothes off by night.  As Mike explains, its all about "women, money, and a good time."  Sounds more like a man's fantasy to me.  But I loved having a front row seat to the show.

Magic Mike, rated "R," comedy/drama, starring Channing Tatum, Alex Pettyfer, Matthew McConaughey and Cody Horn "A-"

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