Magic Mike is, of course, based loosely on star Channing Tatum’s own pre-fame stripping career, but it’s McConaughey who steals the show as Dallas, the stripper/impresario. After all, everyone knew Tatum would look hot in thong, but the 42-year-old McConaughey was a revelation, literally. He was buff and well-waxed, of course (he went to a shopping mall waxing salon just to get used to the process), but he was also naked in his greed and ambition.
His Dallas is a cross between the emcee from Cabaret, a basted turkey, and Mephistopheles, seducing and laying waste to the souls of young strippers who are the raw, replaceable fodder for his ambition of starting a nationwide chain of beefcake clubs. Since it’s McConaughey, he does it with the same sly smile and drawl he uses on the ladies in his audience. Give McConaughey extra points for demanding that he get his own solo stripping scene, and for composing and singing the Ladies of Tampa song that accompanies it.
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