There’s no way that if you’re under 80, female and alive, that you won’t be completely entertained watching the pecs, abs and dance moves of Magic Mike and his men.
Channing Tatum, Joe Manganiello and their easy-on-the-eyes pals are back and prepared to pleasure you in Magic Mike XXL, a summer sequel to the unexpected 2012 hit, Magic Mike. What’s ironic is that while the film is once again centered on a tight band of “male entertainers”, this is a really feminist film. All the highly attractive beefcake on screen — Channing Tatum, Joe, Matt Bomer, Adam Rodriguez, Kevin Nash and more — is perfectly muscled and minus body fat — but those dudes are all entirely focused on making every woman in the audience feel great.
Mike (Tatum) and the boys have reunited three years after the original film for a last hurrah at a legendary strippers convention in Myrtle Beach. Mike has spent the preceding years building up a legitimate woodworking and furniture-making business, but like any first, intense infatuation, he just can’t quit his true love: dancing. When the night falls, he’s all alone and his favorite tunes come on Spotify, he just can’t help himself — he HAS to dance.
His woodworking table becomes a stage and he lets loose with the most original, swift dance moves ever performed next to a drill. That’s why it’s easy to understand how he can be lured back to his old crew when they come calling with the seductive plans for one last road trip and performance. What’s so seductive about the story is that, despite their bulging pecs and other private parts, this isn’t a film about machismo.
This group of male entertainers is — each and every one — mush inside. All they want to do is please women Make women of all shapes, sizes and relationship statuses feel better about themselves, and feel desired. It’s like they’re trying to make up to the female sex for all the insensitive male mishandling they’ve had in their lives. Along the way to Myrtle Beach, they have their share of misadventures, which of course all prove to be fortuitous in the end.
‘Magic Mike XXL’: The Boys Are Back & Hotter Than Ever
Mike and Big Dick Richie (Manganiello) encounter the highly unlikely but potential girls of their dreams, Zoe (Amber Heard) and Nancy (Andie MacDowell). Mike also reunites with the sexy, smart and driven businesswoman, Rome (Jada Pinkett-Smith) who’s created a pleasure palace for women, and as well as an astounding “male entertainer” and erotic dancer, played jaw-droppingly well by Kelly & Michael host Michael Strahan.
Now, can we just talk for a few minutes about the fact that Michael Strahan, host of a stay-at-home-mom-friendly daily show on national TV, wears a thong and grinds his parts all over a very gleeful woman’s face, booty and boobs, and man, can he dance! I’m not sure Kelly will ever be able to look him straight in the face again. The real main meat of Magic Mike XXL, though, is the dancing. It’s absolutely fantastic.
Channing Tatum has lost not an iota of his edge. He’s so fast, so smooth, so original and he makes the most athletic of his moves look so easy and breezy — you can’t believe it. How he, Joe, Michael and the other dudes do it, I don’t know. Magic Mike is the Olympics of male entertainment dancing, and for the most part, despite the boys performing at a stripper convention, their clothes stay on — at least, their bottoms do.
But that’s good, because this film is about the sensual appreciation of women. It’s not about hardcore raunch. So, ladies, prepare to get reacquainted with a batch of dreamboats with literal hot moves that even your grandma could love.
Do you plan to go see Magic Mike XXL, HollywoodLifers? Let me know.
— Bonnie Fuller