Magic Mike XXL delivers when it counts.
There’s blood pressure raising dance moves and ragtag entertainment from a group of soon to be has-beens. This time around other characters are given screen time to shine.
The cast manages to inject some individuality into their roles even though the script only allows them to explore their characters on the surface. Joe Manganiello is a lot of fun here with an expanded role as Big Dick Richie who delivers the best line – spruce up the tree if you expect to trim the hedges.
The new additions offset the white over-muscled crew. Donald Glover is the scrawny crooner that offers a sweeter approach through old school serenades. Jada Pinkett Smith is the sultry emcee that flips the gender dynamics by reminding the customers that they are the queens.
The movie is able to create sexual tension between characters without any of them getting naked.
The group of bulked up goofballs is amusing to watch as they hang around. But this meandering road trip derails what could have been a better narrative.
The sequel attempts to come up with a compelling reason to exist but they all end up unconvincing. The story turns male strippers into on-the-road therapists. The plot spends too much time on inane conversations and whistle stops then adds a tacked-on love interest.
Magi Mike XXL finally picks up when the male strippers realize that like sex, stripping is a two-way street. When a bunch of dudes finally figure out their niche and create an act that they’re also into, the performance is more satisfying for them and the audience.
Overall the film is less compelling with a barely-there plot. The original didn’t hesitate to dive in (remember that dick pump?) and added a story to what is obviously a Hollywoodized sausage party. The sequel replaces this with a shallow bromance.
Still, there’s a lot of rock hard abs to ogle at, sexual innuendos to make you giggle, and dance moves to enjoy.
Magic Mike XXL
Magic Mike XXL is fun but its dull and repetitive script wastes the magic of its predecessor and consequently, its potential.