The following review was written by Ultimate Rabbit correspondent, Tony Farinella.
I thought the first two “Magic Mike” films served two different purposes, but they were entertaining and fun in different ways. The first “Magic Mike,” directed by Steven Soderbergh, was more artistic and character driven. It was a good film with great performances and cinematography. In “Magic Mike XXL,” we got some comedic touches to the material, and it was a charming and fun journey. “Magic Mike’s Last Dance” features style but very little substance and almost none of the charm of the second film. Instead, we are left with a film which really serves no purpose. I really hope it is Magic Mike’s last dance because what else is left to explore with this franchise at this point?
Mike Lane (Channing Tatum) has fallen on hard times after his furniture business went under because of the pandemic. He is now a bartender in Miami and trying to keep a low profile. It’s not that he is ashamed of his past, it’s just that he is looking to leave it behind and move forward. While bartending, one of Mike’s former clients recognizes him, but she plays it cool because she is with her husband. This information gets passed onto Maxandra Mendoza (Salma Hayek Pinault) who offers him $6,000 for a dance. He initially asked for $60,000, but they were able to settle on $6,000. After he dances for her, she offers him a chance to earn that $60,000 in London, but she leaves out the details.
While in London, we discover Max is in the middle of a divorce and is now in possession of the Rattigan Theatre. She wants Mike to choreograph dance elements into “Isabel Ascende,” a play which was being run there before she arrived and shut it down. When Mike and Max come together, they come up with the idea of incorporating erotic dance into the production in a way which will spice things up around town. This, however, does not come without problems from her ex-husband, Roger (Alan Cox). Max believes Mike can find a way to put something magical out there, even if it is for only one night, as he really made an impression on her back in Miami with his dancing.
One of the biggest problems with this film is the fact it does not feature the previous crew of dancers such as Kevin Nash, Joe Manganiello, Matt Bomer and Adam Rodriguez. They are only shown here on a brief Zoom call, where Mike promises to get them their money back after the furniture business they invested in with him went out of business. The film was really missing their presence and chemistry together as a group. Overall, the film does have some great dance numbers, especially the one in the beginning between Mike and Max and some big numbers at the end. It is everything in the middle which just seems unnecessary and unimportant to the viewers.
I liked the chemistry between Tatum and Hayek Pinault. I wanted their relationship to develop more on screen from a character perspective instead of just being a physical attraction. I thought her personal assistant, Victor (Ayub Khan-Din), had some great one-liners and used his screen time wisely. More of his character would have been appreciated. Max’s adopted daughter, Zadie, played by Jemelia George in her first film role, also showed tremendous timing and screen presence. There is a genesis for an entertaining film here, but at nearly two hours long, it’s a real slog to sit through from start to finish. The first two films were better than I expected them to be, but this one is a drag. There is not a lot of enjoyment to be had here as this sequel is really flat and uninspired.
* * out of * * * *
Blu-ray Info: “Magic Mike’s Last Dance” is released on a two-disc Blu-ray/DVD combo pack from Warner Brothers Home Entertainment. It has a running time of 112 minutes and is rated R for sexual material and language. This combo pack comes with the Blu-ray, DVD, and a digital copy of the film as well.
Video Info: The 1080p High-Definition transfer looks really, really good here. I’ve always been a big fan of the look and feel of Steven Soderbergh’s films, and this is no exception here. It has a crisp, clear look, but it also knows when to light up during the dance numbers. This is a really, really good-looking Blu-ray.
Audio Info: The DTS-HD MA: English 5.1 audio transfer is also top notch with flawless sound. It also comes on the following audio formats: Dolby Digital: English Descriptive Audio, French, and Spanish. Subtitles are in English, French, and Spanish.
Magic Mike’s New Moves
Should You Buy It?
I understand they wanted to do something different with the third film. They took it to London and added Hayek Pinault. They had good intentions here. After all, this is Tatum’s baby, and he’s a producer on the film. However, they left behind the boys from the first two films, and they are such a big part of this franchise. They added the flavor and the fun factor. The film also takes itself too seriously with these voiceovers which come across as too self-important. There are good intentions here, as I mentioned, but the execution is very poor. There is no meat on the bone with the screenplay here. I did not feel like I knew any of the other dancers all that well, and I wanted to know more about Hayek Pinault’s character besides the fact she is getting divorced from a wealthy businessman. If this is on HBO one night, you can check it out. I would not go out of my way to see it or buy it.
**Disclaimer** I received a copy of this film from Warner Brothers to review for free. The opinions and statements in the review are mine and mine alone.