Well, this has been keeping me and the Film4.com team busy for the last couple of months. Thanks to the…
Work all day. Work it all night.
Mike, an experienced stripper, takes a younger performer called The Kid under his wing and schools him in the arts of partying, picking up women, and making easy money.
It ain't no Showgirls, that's for sure!
Despite the positive word of mouth the thought of a Steven Soderbergh male stripper movie never sounded appealing and the end results were as disappointing as expected. I can only assume that the film was well received purely because people got to see Hollywood celebrities wear very little clothing and grind their crotches in women’s faces because it certainly wasn’t because of the story. As with all of Soderbergh’s recent films, Magic Mike, feels incomplete. Sub plots are started and then briefly explored before being abandoned entirely, characters are given the scantest development (just like their wardrobe) and it generally lacks any real drive or interesting central focus.
For the second film running, Matthew McConaughey steals the show. His turn…
Magic Mike, how do I loathe thee, let me count the ways.
1. Channing Tatum. I don’t know why, but images of David Hassleholf spring to mind whenever I see you onscreen.. Perhaps it’s your simian acting style. I guess you thought your real-life stripper story was going to be the next Rocky, and that you had the heart and soul ( and talent ) to pull it off on screen. I’m sure you did. What I see is a popular High School quarterback in the school play. Sure, it sells tickets, but it’s embarrassingly awful to watch.
2. Cody Horn. You deliver about as much charisma and emotion as a Stepford Wife on prosaic. Your dad being the chairman…
A couple things I realized while watching this:
1) I was right in my assumption that thrusting my pelvis into a woman's face is a total turn on for her.
2) I just need to stop watching Soderbergh's movies.
I know that I am completely alone in my total ennui towards this guy, and I'm cool with that. But how did he elevate this material? By shooting everything through a doo doo-stained filter like he always does? I could put on Coyote Ugly and mess with the color controls for that, thanks.
Okay, so maybe he toned down the visual flair to focus on working with the actors to create interesting characters. Let's see, Matthew McConaughey's portrayal of Matthew McConaughey…
I am torn.
This is possibly one of the worst films I've ever seen. I wanted to walk out 20 minutes in, by 40 minutes in I rued having had that coffee that was preventing a good snooze, and by the 90 minute mark I was angry that it hadn't ended yet. I came out declaring that next to Pauline at the Beach this was definitely the worst I'd seen. There were a few interesting camera shots and McConaughey was fantastic, but his performance stood out like a sore thumb, most of the dialogue was inane and the audio mix was terrible in too many spots to count.
And yet, there was something nagging me about the structure of the…
Steven Soderbergh is the kind of director who apparently can make movies about everything. He seems to be on a temporary break from film making, I can only wish that this break doesn’t last much long. In Magic Mike he focuses on the life of a male stripper who is surrounded by women, money and glamour but despite all these something more important and deeper is absent in his life which makes it less joyful. Magic Mike tells its story in three different months, in June Mike is having fun, he enjoys his life more than before and seems like nothing can reduce his pleasure. In July the first signs of his unsteady situation show themselves and finally in August…
Rollin' down the street, smokin' indo, sippin' on gin and juice
Laid back (with my mind on my money and my money on my mind)
Consider this a dual review for Magic Mike and Morocco, mainly because both films have their mind on their money and their money on their mind.
As far as I’m concerned, Steven Soderbergh can do no wrong. The guy, particularly in his post-Traffic period, is just so supremely confident in his abilities that it’s scary. He really hit his stride following The Informant, where he made genuinely adult films that kinda felt like they belong to some bygone era. It’s the sort of stuff that Ashby or Paluka would produce, though I guess I would…
When I heard people talk about eye candy...
Eye candy!? It is a matter of taste.
Such a let down of a movie. Not enough naked dancing dudes to make up for the shitty plot. And I love how the director pretends that we care about the plot. I'm not watching this for the plot, just like men don't buy playboy to read the articles. And they had Matt Boner (that's his name now) and did not take advantage of him. I mean, come on! He's sexier than Channing TaterTotes by like a 1000 fold. Anyways, the main bitch was really boring, whiny and plain. But so is Channing, so I guess they're made for each other. Also, fluffy can't act to save his life, the bro should have cracked a joke or something. Also, I…
Between revisiting this and watching The Knick, Soderbergh makes the craft of filmmaking look so effortless that it’s just not fair. When he occasionally whiffs it, it’s almost reassuring.
Conventional in a lot of ways. The Soderbergh elements make it strong. Great ending.
Okay, so Soderbergh can shoot the shit out of all the ridiculously involved stripping/dancing routines that Tatum, Pettyfer and McConaughey perform. Shame the story on which those routines are hung (haha, hung) is so weak and unfocused. The romance subplot is a black hole, and when I was supposed to care about the characters, I really couldn't. Entertaining but empty.
Notable cinematography, excellent choreography. Use of diegetic music in dance seguences is stellar. Script could be tighter. Good acting by Tatum.
This evening's special at Soderberghs is the Magic Mike. On first appearances, this burger may look unhealthy, like the sort of thing one might crave in the moment during those ungodly hours, but regret later on. If it wasn't a dish at Soderberghs, your palettes probably wouldn't even give this tasty morsel a second thought.
This film is just an excellent entertainment, full stop. It is filled with great scenes, a fun cast and an assured direction. Tatum has rarely if ever been this well cast, and his final dance scene is an immortal moment. This film also wouldn't feel right without the legitimising presence of McConaughey, who was born to play that role (among others).
In some ways, it…
- Mulholland Drive
- Yi Yi: A One and a Two
- There Will Be Blood
- Under the Skin
- G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra
- Judge Dredd
- Mars Attacks!
- Bad Boys II
I'm not a fan of the term "Guilty Pleasure" so I decided to make my list called the "Fuck you,…
- Once Upon a Time in Anatolia
- Miss Bala
- The Turin Horse
- This Is Not a Film
This list combines the two checklists The A.V. Club published last year: