Magic Mike - (R16) (offensive language, drug use & sexual themes) – ID REQUIRED
Starring: Channing Tatum (21 Jump Street)
Alex Pettyfer (I am Number Four)
Matthew McConaughey (The Lincoln Lawyer)
Director: Steven Soderbergh (Contagion, Ocean’s Eleven)
By Sally Burgess
Based partly on the early days of actor Channing Tatum’s life, Magic Mike is a high-energy mixture of a sexier, raunchier The Full Monty, and Boogie Nights but without the porn. Tatum is stripper Magic Mike, who takes young, aimless slacker Adam (Pettyfer) under his wing and turns him into The Kid, the newest addition to male stripper group Xquisite. Adam is 19 and is soon having the time of his life in Tampa, earning as much cash as his thong can hold and enjoying many trysts with female clients, but he stupidly gets involved in a drug dealing scheme that puts himself in danger, and Mike’s savings for his own business dreams at risk.
Director Soderbergh directs this with a lot less control than his previous efforts, but the seemingly improvised scenes add to the reality. Tatum gets better with every film he’s in, and boy this man can really dance. Matthew McConaughey steals almost every scene as the club’s owner Dallas, and a very buff Alex Pettyfer gives the right amount of naïve depth as The Kid, a fictionalised version of Tatum.
There is plenty to like here for those who simply want to enjoy the many impressive physiques on display, but I was pleasantly surprised there was more to Magic Mike than male strippers. There’s a morality tale beneath the sleazy veneer, and a conventional romance between Mike and Adam’s sister Brooke (newcomer Cody Horn) gives the movie its emotional core.
FOUR POPCORNS OUT OF FIVE