Monday, March 13, 2017

Magic Mike (2012)

Number Rolled: 84
Movie Name/Year: Magic Mike (2012)
Tagline: Work all day. Work it all night.
Genre: Comedy, Drama
Length: 110 minutes
Rating: R
Production Companies: Iron Horse Entertainment, Extension 765, St. Petersburg Clearwater Film Commission
Producer: Reid Carolin, Gregory Jacobs, Channing Tatum, Nick Wechsler
Director: Steven Soderbergh
Writer: Reid Carolin
Actors: Matthew McConaughey, Channing Tatum, Olivia Munn, Alex Pettyfer, James Martin Kelly, Cody Horn, Reid Carolin, George A. Sack, Micaela Johnson, Denise Vasi, Camryn Grimes, Kate Easton, Joe Manganiello, Matt Bomer, Adam Rodriguez, Kevin Nash, Gabriel Iglesias, Betsy Brandt, Mircea Monroe, Riley Keough, Maynard the Pig, Michael Roark
Stunt Doubles: Kyle McDuffie

Speech Available: English
Subtitles Available: English

Blurb from Netflix: Veteran male stripper Magic Mike introduces a new dancer known as the Kid to the pleasures -- and perils -- of their profession.

Selina’s Point of View:
This isn’t the first time I’ve seen this film, but I happen to enjoy Magic Mike. I mean, it’s not the deepest movie you’ll ever watch. If you took Save the Last Dance (2001) and Good Will Hunting (1997), mixed them together, removed the majority of their depth, and added a pinch of sexy absurd pointlessness – Magic Mike would pretty much be your product.

It’s kind of fun to see some shameless nudity geared toward those interested in men, also. I’ve seen plenty of films with female tits and ass prominently displayed. I happen to enjoy that stuff too, long as it fits the story and doesn’t turn into a ten-minute awkward out-of-place sex scene. (Clearly referencing BloodRayne [2005] there.)

My personal view on the film might have a little to do with the eye candy, but I also genuinely enjoy the characters and the story.

I do, however, also acknowledge that this is more of a guilty pleasure than a ‘must recommend to everyone I see’ kind of thing.

The thing is, I know Magic Mike doesn’t push any boundaries. It’s not going revolutionize filmmaking. No one’s going to look back at this film thirty years from now and call it a classic. You know what, though? It’s fucking entertaining.

Movies don’t always have to be deep. Sometimes it’s allowed to be about eye candy and a cute/mildly interesting story.

I’m not a critic. I don’t have to take into account the camera angels and the cinematography. Most of us in the audience don’t. So my final take from this film is that it amused the hell out of me and I enjoyed watching it. I’d recommend it to anyone who isn’t uptight about movies and feels like being entertained.

Cat’s Point of View:
I actually watched this movie for the first time when it came out in theaters. A group of us had a fun girl’s night of it. I’ve seen it multiple times since then – not generally all the way through, since I’m usually happening upon it by chance as it’s playing on one of the cable movie networks.

I’ll admit that I went into this movie thinking that it was going to be a fluff piece for the sake of earning the female moviegoer eye-candy dollar. It wasn’t really so much that I thought that Channing Tatum (The Eagle, Side Effects, The Hateful Eight) was incapable of helming a serious movie project – but with the subject matter, it was a bit hard to look at it any other way.

I am pleased to say that I was wrong.

This film had some layers within the plot and an actual story with substance. Truthfully, there’s supposedly only about 19 minutes of male exotic dancing in this movie. (Someone counted) With the film being not quite 2 hours long, that’s something.

I know, right? It was refreshingly surprising to me, too. Not that I’m going to complain about seeing Tatum, Joe Manganiello (One Tree Hill, Sabotage, Knight of Cups), Matt Bomer (Space Station 76, American Horror Story, The Nice Guys), and Alex Pettyfer (Beastly, In Time, Elvis & Nixon) gyrating in next to nothing. I will admit that I was shamelessly fangirling. Seriously, this was Manganiello fresh from his total-body transformation for his part as Alcide in True Blood (2008-2014).

I digress.

Before I get carried away extolling the praises of the cast, let’s take a look at the plot. I promise there was one. We’ve seen a few movies that have explored what women go through, to some extent, in the adult entertainment industry – namely films like Showgirls (1995) and Striptease (1996) and their ilk. We haven’t really seen anything from the opposite side of the scenario.

With the struggles that women face being taken seriously in society in general, one might even assume that guys would have it easy in this department. That’s not generally the case. This film takes a look at the struggle of the title character as he wants to expand his horizons beyond where his looks and dancing can take him. It’s also a story about friendships, and even a bit of legitimate romance.

There’s quite a bit of levity in the movie as well as exploring the darker side of this corner of the industry. I like the parallel’s drawn between Tatum and Pettyfer’s characters and how that plays out.

Of course, we can’t forget Matthew McConaughey (The Lincoln Lawyer, Interstellar, Kubo and the Two Strings) and his role in this film. There’s light and darkness with his character – and he even takes the stage to dance a bit. Unfortunately, one (or more) of the extras got a little over-excited and handsy during his performance and actually ripped his g-string. He worked it into his performance, though, and it fits right in with the movie.

I really enjoyed this movie. It exceeded my expectations; and while it might not be an Oscar contender, it was solid and I would definitely recommend it.

Alright, alright, alright.

Rotten Tomatoes Critic Score – 81%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score – 60%

Netflix’s Prediction for Selina – 2/5
Selina’s Trust-the-Dice Score4/5

Netflix’s Prediction for Cat – 3.5/5
Cat’s Trust-the-Dice Score4/5

P.S. There’s a song sung by Matthew McConaughey near the end of the credits and some bits of the movie that play during the start.

Movie Trailer:

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