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  • Writer's pictureStephen Yanni

🏆 Barbie (2023)- A Playfully Imperfect Journey

Updated: Jan 30

Rating: ★★★☆ (4/5 Stars)

Released 07-21-2023

Watched 07-22-2023

Reviewed 07-23-2023

Viewed in Theater - Using Cinemark Movie Club

"I don’t have anything big planned. Just a giant blowout party with all the Barbies, and planned choreography, and a bespoke song. You should stop by."

Barbie, directed by Greta Gerwig and headlined by Margot Robbie, Ryan Gosling, Will Ferrell, Rhea Perlman, and a host of other big names, is an ambitious venture into the world of living dolls and their brush with human reality. Despite its high-caliber cast and aesthetically pleasing visuals, the film falls just a little short of expectations due to its script and storyline.

The performances are undoubtedly the film's major strength. Margot Robbie as Barbie delivers an engaging and dynamic performance, and the chemistry she shares with Ken, portrayed by Ryan Gosling, is delightful. The supporting cast, including Dua Lipa, John Cena, Rhea Perlman, Helen Mirren, and Will Ferrell, bring depth and a diversity of character that adds to the vibrancy of the Barbie world.

Gerwig's vision is encapsulated in the stunning visuals and set design. The vivid and colorful world of Barbie Land is a joy to behold, while the transition to the real world provides a stark and intriguing contrast. The pacing is steady, maintaining interest without overwhelming viewers with rapid plot developments.

However, where the film struggles is in its script and storyline. The narrative appears promising, exploring the concept of perfect plastic entities venturing into the complex and often messy human world. But the potential for intriguing character development and compelling conflict seems squandered, as the plot often feels superficial and lacking in depth. The film does have its humorous moments and emotional beats, but they are drowned in a script that leans heavily on cliches and predictable plot turns.

"Barbie" feels like a missed opportunity to delve deeper into the iconic character and her world. Its innovative premise could have been used to tackle themes of perfection, identity, and societal expectations in a more meaningful and engaging way.

In conclusion, "Barbie" is a visually striking film with commendable performances but is let down by its script. For hardcore Barbie enthusiasts, it might still be a fun journey, but for general audiences, it is perhaps best to wait until it hits home streaming platforms. Despite its flaws, the film does have its charming moments and could serve as a light, entertaining watch on a lazy afternoon.

PS - The "Barbenheimer" phenomenon.

The Barbenheimer phenomenon is a quirky internet trend that arose from the simultaneous release of two vastly different blockbuster films, "Barbie" and "Oppenheimer," on July 21, 2023. This unlikely pairing led to the creation of the portmanteau "Barbenheimer," which quickly gained traction on social media platforms. The juxtaposition of the two films—one catering to a younger audience and filled with colorful, fantastical elements, and the other a more serious and historical examination—captured the imagination of the online community. Memes, jokes, and creative content exploring this unexpected connection spread across platforms, turning Barbenheimer into a symbol of modern pop culture's eclectic and often humorous nature. This caused many people to plan to see them both on opening day.

Did you see them both? Which did you like better? I had a clear favorite - Did you? Leave us a comment below.


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