samarthbhaskar’s review published on Letterboxd:
Magic Mike XXL is an incredibly fun movie. Having seen, and liked the first Magic Mike, I was expecting something slightly darker, more socially minded, or even more plotted. Instead, I found myself laughing out loud, gasping and yelling at the screen while watching one vignette after another of long, expertly choreographed dance scenes, beautiful Soderbergh-ian cinematography, dialog and plot that didn't take itself too seriously, but also didn't devolve into being goofy or dumb.
I am endlessly impressed with the slight-of-hand trick that the filmmakers pulled in this movie. Audiences going in to Magic Mike XXL probably do not expect a film that celebrates female sexuality, respects women, shows (without sensationalizing) diverse body types and non-traditional relationships or men participating in drag shows without threats to their identities. Certainly there's still plenty more we could ask for. For example, for men to not consider themselves "healers" for merely listening to women. For a fuller, more complete treatment of race. But every movie doesn't have to accomplish every thing. What this movie accomplishes is a great start.
I should reiterate, again, that this movie is a bag of fun, before it is anything else. The dancing alone is worth the price of admission. I look forward to getting more examples of good, clean, unadulterated fun at the movies that doesn't rely on dumbing things down or rely on making fun of someone.