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Review: Magic Mike

Reviving the '80s beefcake genre
By NICK JOHNSTON  |  July 3, 2012
3.0 3.0 Stars



After January's Haywire, director Steven Soderbergh revives another genre, the '80s beefcake buffet, with better results than could have been expected. Based on Channing Tatum's experiences working as a stripper in the early-aughts, the plot concerns the titular Mike (Tatum), a furniture entrepreneur-cum-stripper, taking a brash college dropout (Alex Pettyfer) under his wing as he considers giving his lifestyle up for the said apprentice's sister (Cody Horn). Soderbergh's subtle style complements a witty screenplay, which lets the performances take center stage, especially within the amazing striptease sequences. Each of the supporting players makes an impression, especially Matthew McConaughey as the owner of the club, but it's Tatum's cocksure swagger that sells the movie, even through a pace-killing drug subplot. Magic Mike is one of the most entertaining surprises of 2012, and it's almost enough to purge our minds of Striptease. Almost.

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