Movie Review: MAGIC MIKE XXL – ‘The Channing Tatum Stripper Film’

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When you review movies, there is occasionally that film that comes along that is not marketed to you at all, doesn’t appeal to you at all, yet you still decide to sit through it and hopefully come out on the other end awake at least; this, was that film. This film was not made for me and i was not interested in the film, so before deciding to check this out i genuinely thought i was going to hate this film, but after watching it, there was just something about it that made this movie a surprisingly enjoyable one. I gotta say it; i actually enjoyed Magic Mike XXL. For the most part it is just a fun movie with a good amount of comedy and likeable characters that happens to be about strippers. The film struggles with pacing during the second act but i would say the fun light-hearted tones during the first and third acts made up for it. I did not see the first Magic Mike so i was being introduced to these characters for the first time in this film and i gotta say, the film-makers did a great job at quickly introducing or re-introducing these characters in a way that gave me a quick overview of their personality and allowed the film to just move on. This really helped me get behind these characters’ actions throughout the film, well for most of the film.

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The first 40 minutes of this movie i really enjoyed, it felt like a road trip film with a group of guys who had good chemistry and it was really funny. The film wasn’t taking itself seriously, it knew it was just here to entertain its target audience so it had fun with setting up surprisingly very well choreographed ‘dance’ scenes that not only appealed to the female audience but i thought was some pretty good comedy that got me laughing quite a bit. Everyone played their part in making this section entertaining, Channing Tatum, Joe Manganiello, and Gabriel Iglesias were the drivers of this comedy and were putting in good performances. I won’t spoil anything but at a certain moment an event happens and in a heartbeat the film just flipped its overall tone and just lost me. It ditched the light-hearted, careless fun tone and the fast pace for a more slow, plot driven, and i guess meaningful tone. It was almost like one guy wanted a fun comedic film and someone wanted a serious stripper film so rather than picking one, they went with both and split it down the middle. And for the next 45 minutes i was just barely hanging in there with the hope that it would go back to what was good in the first act.

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But despite the very slow and quite uninteresting middle portion of the film, the relatively short third act bought back some of the fun from the first act and some ‘interesting’ dance routines that actually helped the film finish off kinda strong despite the vent end going by really quickly. This is one of the surprises of the year, i never thought i would come out of a film about male strippers saying that i actually somewhat enjoyed it, but i really did. If you are a female then yes you will most definitely like this movie i don’t need to tell you that, otherwise if you are not, you probably won’t, but there is some fun to be had if you don’t focus on the fact that you are watching a movie about almost naked men dancing. – 5.8

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