'Magic Mike's Last Dance' Movie Review: A Tease with No Climax
- Published: Friday, 10 February 2023 01:07
- Written by Lupe R Haas
Channing Tatum's sexy dance skills are the main attraction in Steven Soderbergh’s MAGIC MIKE movies, and MAGIC MIKE’S LAST DANCE is no exception. While the storyline teases a big finale, the climax just never came. However, his on-screen chemistry with Salma Hayek is off the charts.
Salma Hayek is a divorced socialite whose mesmerized by Mike’s (Tatum) performance while vacationing in Florida. Max (Hayek) lures him to London to put on a theatrical show for others to delight in the experience she shared with the former stripper.
After a promising and steamy start, MAGIC MIKE’S LAST DANCE falls flat on its face. Tatum will still get you hot and bothered with his strip tease and adding Salma Hayek to the mix amps up the sexy vibe. The two sizzle together, and those are the best parts of the thin storyline.
Max is an impulsive and scorn socialite looking to shock the status quo in London. Mike is in over his head as the newly minted theater director overseeing an upcoming show. It’s not obvious to Mike nor the audience watching what sort of show Max wants from Mike, but they recruit hunks with moves like Mike.
However, there is no emotional connection to the new dancers as their sole purpose is to strut their stuff in the background without any character development. They're solely here for eye candy. Mike's old gang played by Joe Manganiello, Adam Rodriguez, and Matt Bomer are sorely missed.
The dance numbers are underwhelming except for Tatum's two big routines that will make women swoon. The big finale dances without Tatum felt like a version of the Las Vegas show, watching random guys perform.
What MAGIC MIKE'S LAST DANCE gets right is finally giving the role of MC to a female character (Juliette Motamed). Motamed's character is a breath of fresh air to a stale story that goes nowhere.
The female gaze is attempted in this third iteration by screenwriter Reid Carolin, the same writer behind the MAGIC MIKE trilogy. The show Max and Mike aim to present is from the woman's perspective which is different from the previous versions but the tease doesn't pay off in the end. The dialogue is often times cheesy but the audience seems to enjoy the on-the-nose interactions. The third act is a mess with the introduction of a new obstacle that is resolved a little too quickly and conveniently.
Steven Soderbergh returns to direct after skipping MAGIC MIKE XXL. The director knows exactly where to aim the camera during the seductive scenes. It's classy and voyeuristic without getting into the X-rated realm.
As with the previous MAGIC MIKE movies, the story culminates into an impressive showcase of hunks, but the finale fails to reach the climax the movie was building up to. The sequel ends abruptly as well.
Is MAGIC MIKE'S LAST DANCE worth the money? Watching Channing Tatum dance is worth dropping those dollar bills, just don't expect any substance.