‘Magic Mike’ review

Magic Mike was exactly what I thought it would be, which is to say, good.  After proving he could use that hard body and dumb face to hilarious effect in 21 Jump Street, Channing Tatum pulls off a more dramatic role in Magic Mike, without any of the wooden acting that seemed to dog his earlier days. In a movie that definitely didn’t need to be as good as it is, Tatum is really appealing–as more-personality-than-I-would-expect-but-still-stuck-in-the-requisite-love-interest-slot, Brooke (Cody Horn) says of Tatum’s stripping, “I get it. I get it.”

Matthew McConaughey is also fantastic as Dallas, the strip club’s head honcho. Perhaps stability in his personal life has emboldened McConaughey to take bigger, crazier risks in his film roles–the years of lifeless rom coms seem far behind him.

And certainly for all the inherent campiness of the genre, Stephen Soderbergh and company manage to make the film feel realistic. The profession certainly isn’t glamorized and the Tampa his cameras capture is at turns, stunning and sinister.

The only weak spot really is Alex Pettyfer as the movie’s naif. He just doesn’t play strung-out-on-ecstasy convincingly.

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