Greta Gerwig’s Barbie is a cute, fun and lighthearted movie which has beautiful aesthetic and fashionable outfits. I watched it in a nearly packed theater and reacting with an audience — and my childhood friend — made the movie-viewing experience enjoyable. For anyone reading this review who still needs to watch Barbie, there will be spoilers ahead!
Starting with the actors, Margot Robbie’s performance is strong and emotion-evoking as Barbie. Robbie is an amazing choice for this role due to her charisma and vibrancy. Ryan Gosling is comical as Ken, whether he’s expressing his devotion to Barbie or learning about patriarchy in the human world.
Additionally, Michael Cera is hilarious as Allan, who seems like an underrated character due to his comedic yet awkward timing at certain moments, i.e., acting awkward when Barbie waves hello to everyone at the beginning. There is also the part where he pops up in the backseat of the car as Gloria and her daughter Sasha, played by Ariana Greenblatt, attempt to leave Barbie Land — then temporarily named Ken Land.
Speaking of Ken Land, I found it funny seeing Barbie poke fun at the women being dominated by male power to a major degree. It also made me sympathize with Gloria (America Ferrera) when she spoke about the constant contradictions that women have to face in society.
The film met my expectations by making me laugh during the cutest moments and some parts, surprisingly, made me cry. One part, in particular, is at the end when Barbie has a vision of what it’s like being a human being as a montage of kids experiencing life plays out. Watching that part while listening to Billie Eilish’s What Was I Made For made me cry, especially because of her delicate and smooth tone and the powerful-sounding lyrics.
The first critique I have is that I wish there could have been more backstory about Ruth Handler (Rhea Pearlman), the creator of Barbie. It would have been interesting to see more of Ruth’s backstory and how she became inspired to create the beloved doll so that it added more depth to Barbie’s journey of finding herself and exploring the emotions of humanity.
Another character who deserves more backstory is Gloria, who has suffered a lot of mental health struggles from being overworked at Mattel and having a distant relationship with Sasha. Because of these aspects about her, it would have been just as impactful to see more about Gloria’s life growing up and how that might have affected her when she became a mom.
Overall, Barbie is one of the most fun films I have watched this year and it is worth the hype. I hope more people that go to the theater will laugh and cry from the film as much as I did.
Edited by: Steven London & James Sutton